Recently the SB Nation mothership suggested that we (the all powerful college football blog consortium on SB Nation) make use of our web based story generation stations in a similar way. Specifically, we were each encouraged to put up a Wednesday post that touched on our team's wider conference in some way. As luck would have it, I was already planning to do a recap/look-ahead post for the rest of the B1G. That's synergy friends!
My concept here is really complex so I hope I don't lose anyone. On Wednesdays, I will put up a post that offers quick recaps of every other B1G team's game from the previous week, including a link/quote from their SB Nation site. I'll also toss up a quick blurb about who they play next, including kickoff time (CST of course) and where on the TV dial it can be found. I'll also be including quotes from my friendly sidekick, Gopher Gnome, who will share his feelings about our B1G brethren. My snappy title? "What's the B1G Deal?" Hopefully you see what I did there.
So...yea. Recaps/Look-aheads in alphabetical order:
What happened? Beat Western Michigan 24-7. Bad news is that Scheelhause got hurt, no word on how bad.
Because the first half flowed like that, I ate. I wasn’t agitated. I wasn’t quietly seething. Yes, we have lots to fix, especially on the offensive line – that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m saying that my halftime consternation over the past 7 years was due to a coach who ran a game different from common wisdom. Today, precision ruled the day before halftime, and because of that, $9 for a brat and a Diet Coke.
Gopher Gnome Sez: Is Illinois' defense that good or is WMU not the passing powerhouse we were expecting?
Up Next? @ Arizona State. 9:30pm on ESPN.
What happened? They played a much too close game with Indiana State, winning 24-17. Sophmore QB Tre Roberson improved on last season, going 26 of 36 for 280 and a TD.
Well, it's a win. And it's week one. While IU's Big Ten schedule is very tough, the design of the schedule in September seems to work in IU's favor.
Gopher Gnome Sez: You can feel the excitement.
Up Next? On the road against Massachusetts @ Foxborough Stadium. 2:30pm on ESPN3.
What happened? Iowa beat Northern Illinois 18-17. Vandenberg made Q look like Peyton. AIRBHG granted Damon Bullock a reprieve and allowed him to rumble for 176 yards of total offense with 33 carries.
So that game went just about like we all expected it to go, right? With a come-from-behind nail-biter win from an Iowa team led by their defense and running game? I think that's how we drew it up last week.
Gopher Gnome Sez: I too hate Iowa.
Up Next? Home versus Iowa State. 2:30pm on Big Ten Network.
What happened? Beat Boise State 17-13. #1 thing worth knowing? Le'Veon Bell: 44 carries, 210 yards, 2 TDS, 4.8 YPC. Monster game. #2 thing to know? The new scoreboards in Spartan Stadium look glorious.
Any win over Boise State is a good win, plain and simple. When you look at the stats, the game shouldn't have even been close, but that's how critical some of MSU's offensive mistakes were. A national title is a longshot and Friday's game likely didn't have any affect on #P4RB, but it was big win for the program in front of a national audience, and got an exciting season off to a great start.
Gopher Gnome Sez: Our run defense better improve before Bell comes to town...
Up Next? @ Central Michigan (who put up tens of thousands of temporary seats to cash in). 2:30 on ESPNU.
What happened? Lost to Alabama by way too many. It wasn't pretty.
The overall takeaway: Michigan lost to one of the nation's best teams, if not the nation's best team, and although they might not have shown it they're still going to be a conference contender. Alabama's defense is more talented and more physical than any defense Michigan will face yet Michigan's offense produced 269 yards, and that's in spite of the horrific play calling done by Al Borges. The defense struggled against the greatest offensive line it has played against in years, but who was actually expecting the Wolverine front to hold? After all is said and done this team will be right there in the thick of the conference race and be ready to redeem itself in a high-end bowl game.
Gopher Gnome Sez: DERP
Up Next? Air Force comes to the Big House. 2:30pm on ABC.
What happened? Beat Southern Miss 49-20. Taylor Martinez has a nice start to the year, going 26 of 34 for 354 and 5 TD's. The arm punt motion remained. Rex Burkhead hurt his knee. The seriousness of the injury is still TBD.
We read story after story about Taylor Martinez's work with quarterback guru Steve Calhoun in the spring and summer. Some believed it, some dismissed it. Some insisted it was too late and ridiculed the whole notion. Now after game one, it's not just talk anymore. It's absolutely real. Sure Martinez has had good games throwing the ball before: see the Oklahoma State in 2010 or Northwestern in 2011. But this one was different; in past games, the passes sometimes were caught despite themselves. Against Southern Miss, the accuracy was improved and more importantly, the touch was there. Yes, it's just one game, but it is more substantial than talk. We'll see if Martinez can do it again, but for now, we have to give the man credit.
Gopher Gnome Sez: I liked the inaccurate arm punts better.
Up Next? @ UCLA in the Rose Bowl. 7:30pm on Fox.
What happened? Cardiac Cats? Cardiac Cats. NU coughed up a 22 point lead but won the game in the final minutes on a drive led by backup QB Trevor Siemian (Kain Colter had a shoulder injury).
Well, I had been hoping Northwestern's season opener would tell us a lot about a team that was difficult to gauge this offseason. Would a young, talented team be good this year, or bad? There's no worse way to answer that question than a one-point victory. Northwestern was massively outgained and earned a dubious penalty to keep the decisive drive alive, but got the W. The win is very, very nice, but the game leaves NU's fanbase with just as many question marks as we had going in.
Gopher Gnome Sez: This game makes me feel better about playing NU at home.
Up Next? Northwestern plays the 2nd of 3 BCS schools on it's schedule as Vandy comes to Ryan Field. 8pm on Big Ten Network.
What happened? OSU won 50-10 over Miami (OH). Oh, and this:
When the smoke cleared, Ohio State had outgained the Redhawks 538 yards to 312, going 8-for-16 on third downs, 1-for-1 on fourth down, and winning the turnover battle, +3 to -3. Despite their frantic pace offensively at times, the Bucks even finished the afternoon winning the time of possession battle, 31:26 to 28:34. Ohio State's 7.3 yards per pass completion bested the RedHawks' 5.8 and the rushing advantage was even more definitive: Ohio State averaged 5.6 yards per carry while the RedHawks finished at a paltry -.1 per touch. To really put the icing on things, the Bucks were more attention-to-detail oriented and disciplined in terms of executing, committing just three penalties for 20 yards loss relative to Don Treadwell's group's six penalties for 33.
Gopher Gnome Sez: I want a free tattoo.
Up Next? UCF @ The Shoe. 11am on ESPN2.
What happened? The nightmares of PSU fans came true as Ohio won 24-14. Also, many PSU fans continue to struggle with moving on.
So, yeah. Not the result we hoped for, after 10 months of misery. After my third watch of the game, after my emotions were drained, it occurred to me that we'd just seen the 1985 Villanova vs. Georgetown NCAA hoopey-ball championship game. And Ohio was Nova.
Gopher Gnome Sez: Put away the Paterno cardboard cutouts PSU suite owners.
Up Next? @ Virginia. I forsee another loss looming. 11am on ABC.
What happened? Handily defeated EKU 48-6.
I couldn't be happier that we more than took care of business against a team that had visions of grabbing a power conference pelt. The Colonels have had some near misses and given the look of Purdue from last year they were thinking they had a chance. Even handing them the ball five times didn't help them prevent a convincing Purdue victory. It was still everything you want out of an opening season game. It was a convincing win.
Gopher Gnome Sez: What is this "Purdue" you speak of?
Up Next? @ Notre Dame. Purdue fans are PISSED b/c Hope just announced Caleb Terbush as the starting QB over Robert Marve. So that could be interesting. 2:30 on NBC.
What happened? Let Northern Iowa storm back into the game before their potential game winning drive fell short. Montee Ball was Montee Ball. Danny O'Brien is not Russell Wilson.
It was nowhere near pretty, but at the end of the day all victories count the same.
Gopher Gnome Sez: Better Dead Than Red!
Up Next? @ Oregon State, aka the latest team to enjoy the charm of Frat Boy Brett. 3pm on FX.