Before we get going, the gnomes would like to apologize to Bobby Hauck. They said you'd be fired. Instead you got extended. Good work.
Well, the gnomes were really planning on having this up yesterday. But I was sidetracked by work and was then on the road and had to choose between The Honeycrisp Trophy and this. The gnomes were unhappy with my decision, but they understood. I mean, HONEYCRISPS. Anyway, I brought them with me to Thanksgiving today and we all ate too much food and fell asleep and anyway, here's snark, holiday style!
Illinois: 4-7 (1-6)
YOU WON A B1G TEN GAME ILLINOIS! CONGRATULATIONS ON ENDING THE B1G STREAK FUTILITY! To The Champaign Room!
How do I do this? How do I respond to the Illini winning their first Big Ten game in two years, and their first since The Champaign Room came into existence? It's just so....it's so....strange?
Yeah, you know what? I am. I don't care that the Illini barely managed to beat a Purdue team whose lone win this season was a 20-14 -- hey, look at that score! -- win over an Indiana State team that just finished its season with a 1-11 record on Saturday. I don't care that they didn't blow a bad Boilermakers team out, or that the offense made plenty of mistakes.
The Illini won a Big Ten football game.
So that's that. Time go move on and...wait, what's this?
University of Illinois football staff member and former NFL player Matt Sinclair was charged on Monday with two felonies after allegedly pointing an unloaded handgun at a vehicle carrying other staff members, authorities said.
Sinclair was arraigned on two felony counts of unlawful use of a weapon, Champaign County State's Attorney Julia Rietz said. The 31-year-old Champaign resident was arrested on Saturday as he drove his truck home from Illinois' game at Purdue in West Lafayette, Ind.
Someone called police at about 4 p.m. Saturday to report a driver pointing a gun out of a truck on Interstate 74 in eastern Illinois.
After police arrested Sinclair a short time later in Urbana, "[Sinclair] told them it was a joke," Rietz said.
I just...there is a reason OTE has a meme about Illinois not being allowed to have nice things.
ILLINOIS SHOULD BE THANKFUL FOR...
As the gnomes have said before...
Up next? NERRRRRRRRDS! 2:30 PM on BTN.
Indiana: 4-7 (2-5)
The gnomes are required to tell you that Indiana lost 42-14 and probably shouldn't have even shown up. Sorry The Crimson Quarry, but we need thoughts.
In the cold and eventually the snow, the Hoosiers went into Columbus and showed little to no fight the entire game. Sure, Indiana has played probably the two best teams in the conference over the last team weeks, but the offense has looked incredibly pedestrian. I'm actually starting to doubt whether the offense was nearly as good as we all thought or if it was just mostly running up against less than average defenses.
Given what you did to Minnesota and what Minnesota did to UW and what you did to MSU and what MSU has done to everyone I'm going to have to say that the last sentence is an overreaction.
INDIANA SHOULD BE THANKFUL FOR...
Here is Indiana's record when playing for the Old Oaken Bucket:
- Last 5 years? 1 out of 5
- Last 10 years? 2 out of 10
- Last 15 years? 3 out of 15
- Last 20 years? 6 out of 20
Yea, be thankful for Purdue. Unless you lose this week. Then you can be thankful for basketball season.
Up next? Purdue comes in for a visit. 2:30 PM on BTN.
Iowa: 7-4 (4-3)
Oh Michigan, sweet Michigan...Iowa tried their hardest to hand you a victory but that's just not how you roll is it? Black Heart Gold Pants lays out just how badly you were beaten:
IOWA SHOULD BE THANKFUL FOR...
The lifeblood of their economy.
Up next? FARMAGEDDON! Black Friday - 11AM on ABC.
Michigan: 7-4 (3-4)
24-21, even though Iowa gave you the ball FOUR TIMES.
Let's move along. Maize n Brew?
Michigan is exactly who we thought they were
What else can I say here? Devin Gardner is still a turnover-prone leader of the offense, coughing up the rock when the game was on the line. Al Borges is still maddeningly ignorant at times. Greg Mattison still doesn't have enough talent up front to produce an elite defense.
MICHIGAN SHOULD BE THANKFUL FOR...
...not being coached by this guy.
Up Next? The Game (That You're Going To Lose). 11AM on ABC.
Michigan State: 10-1 (7-0)
Continued Northwestern's misery by running over them 30-6. The Only Colors is excited to be "Going going, back back, to Indy Indy."
With the win, MSU is 13-3 in Big Ten road games since 2010. It's MSU's third 10-win season under Dantonio. It had only been done two previous times in school history, though playing fewer games in the past makes a difference. MSU has never gone 8-0 in the Big Ten. They'll have a chance to do that next week when they host Minnesota.
MICHIGAN STATE SHOULD BE THANKFUL FOR...
Seriously, you get to be a part of the best internet only B1G trophy out there. That's kind of a big deal.
Up next? BEWARE THE GOPHER. 11AM on BTN.
Nebraska: 8-3 (5-2)
Penn State's kicking game issues gifted Bo another lifeline in the latest close Husker win. 23-20 in OT? Par for the course right now. Corn Nation, your thoughts?
Tell me if you've heard this before: Nebraska has a couple of critical turnovers in the game, but rallies late to win the game. Again. Turnovers still are the bugaboo of this program; earlier this season, it seemed better, but now it's not. Some say it's systematic, though I'm not sure I completely agree. Some of the things this offense does make in the option game makes turnovers more likely to occur, but much of this season's problems can be explained on youth and inexperience.
But something else is very real: the gritty, gutty determination to overcome whatever adversity comes their way cannot be denied. Critics can merely dismiss it and choose to maintain their blindness to it. Their ignorance is simply glaring, as it's this program just doesn't give up. This is one mentally strong program.
NEBRASKA SHOULD BE THANKFUL FOR...
Well, maybe it's just Bo Pelini who should be thankful. Depending on where you come down on the "FIRE BO!" discussion the Ficken misses might make you unhappy.
Up next? FARMAGEDDON! Black Friday - 11 AM on ABC.
Northwestern: 4-7 (0-7)
Well, at this point it probably feels that way for Northwestern. Let's get this over with Sippin' On Purple:
Northwestern isn't going to go to a bowl game. For the first time since 2006, Northwestern won't even have enough wins to go to a bowl game.
For the second time in this season, Northwestern was dominated offensively and defensively. We'd joked about Northwestern having horrendous luck in past weeks, because they did. Today, however, we found out that Northwestern simply isn't anywhere close to as good as Michigan State. Quite frankly, it was better this way: we got to stop holding out hope way earlier.
When this season started, I imagined a worst-case scenario where Northwestern won five games. And now they're going to need to beat Illinois next week to make that happen. This has been disappointing and disastrous. We hope it's a one year blip, but it's time to start wondering if that thing we saw last year was actually the high point for Northwestern football.
Go Cats and stuff.
This is how the gnomes envision Rodger looking right now:
NORTHWESTERN SHOULD BE THANKFUL FOR...
Almost there Northwestern. Win or lose, the end is almost upon you.
Up next? The LOLHat is on the line. 2:30 PM on BTN.
Ohio State: 11-0 (7-0)
Squashed Indiana like a bug. Yay? Land Grant Holy Land reflects:
The total yardage didn't indicate the level of blowout (a 471-442 Buckeye advantage) as Indiana was able to find some success throwing the football, and the Buckeyes were uncharacteristically sloppy with the football, turning it over three times. The Buckeyes held the Hoosiers on downs three times, and held Indiana scoreless in their first six trips into Buckeye territory, aided by two missed Indiana field goals. By the time Indiana finally hit paydirt, on a Nate Sudfeld 4-yard toss to Shane Wynn on 4th and goal, the Buckeyes had already built a 42-0 lead, and the clock didn't leave enough time for a repeat of last year's closer-than-expected matchup, despite their best efforts.
More important then the win over IU was this news:
In a release sent out to students, Ohio State outlined a somewhat radical new plan to try and improve safety regulations surrounding the annual Mirror Lake jump. For much of the previous two decades, the jump took place on the Thursday before the Michigan game. After the game was moved to Thanksgiving weekend more recently, the informal annual event was shifted to the Tuesday before Thanksgiving as most students would be home from Thanksgiving and away from campus on that Thursday.
Of course, this meant some folks had to stick it to The Man:
The real deal was what you'd expect:
Also, this new tradition called Project Ayhe is pretty darn sweet.
OHIO STATE SHOULD BE THANKFUL FOR...
If hadn't cheated, OSU fans would still be watching Tressel-ball instead of Urban-ball.
Illinois Indiana must be destroyed. 11 AM on ABC.
Penn State: 6-5 (3-4)
Sam Ficken, I'm sorry dude. Black Shoe Diaries, wha' happened?
This game could have been so much better, and it could have been so much worse; we can neither truly complain nor wholeheartedly celebrate. Just as last year's splendid absolution was the finale that befit that glorious team, so too was this afternoon's the perfect way to send out the Seniors of 2013, as a microcosm of their final year in the Blue and White.
Today's game, like this entire season, was an exercise in frustration, pockmarked with enough outright jubilation to just about make it all worth it, an experience that both built character and shouldn't be traded for the world.
PENN STATE SHOULD BE THANKFUL FOR...
Good bye bowl ban? Probably.
Up next? Speedbump for Wisconsin. 2:30 PM on ESPN.
Purdue: 1-10 (0-7)
I know this is hard Purdue, but we need you to point to the parts of the field where a Tim Beckman coached team beat you. Hammer and Rails, share your pain:
I knew Purdue had a bad football team. It was no secret. But before today I had hoped that the offense had been held in check because it had played five of the ten best defenses in America and a few other good defenses. After gaining 150 yards on the first two drives in the first quarter Purdue somehow turned the awful Illinois defense into the 1985 Bears. Jonathan Brown played like the best defensive player alive and Purdue somehow did not have an answer for one standout player.
How bad was it? After 150 yards on those first two drives Purdue gained only 133 yards the rest of the game. Of those, 42 yards came on Purdue's final drive where they reached the Illinois 30 before a terrible sequence of plays ended the game.
That breaks down to 91 yards of offense for the majority of three quarters of play, at home, against one of the nation's worst defenses. The Illini were giving up nearly 260 yards per game on the ground and Purdue still could not run aside from the touchdown by Akeem Hunt and a nice run by Brandon Cottom. Purdue finished with 120 rushing yards, double its average at least, but only 11 first downs. Purdue gained only three first downs between its last TD drive and the final drive.Folks, that is not just bad. Purdue would have to improve to be bad. This was an embarrassing effort and a collective failure of every single facet of the Purdue football program from Morgan Burke on down to the backup walk-on long snapper.
PURDUE SHOULD BE THANKFUL FOR...
Despite everything that has happened, you're in a better place than this guy is.
Up next? Wave goodbye to the Bucket. 2:30 PM on BTN.
Wisconsin: 9-2 (6-1)
The Badgers' relied on a 125-yard rushing effort from senior tailback James White and a stalwart defense in the latest installation of the border battle to stifle the No. 25 Gophers, holding UM to just 185 total yards in a 20-7 win.
HOCKEY HATE MEANS OBLIGATORY REMINDER.
WISCONSIN SHOULD BE THANKFUL FOR...
Time to take stock and realize you are a horrible program/person/human being. The gnome's hate never dies!
Up Next? Penn State for Senior Day. 2:30 PM on ESPN.