Had the week off.
Next Up: Miami (Ohio)
Lost to Missouri 45-28
The Hoosier offense struggled early, but started to hit its stride in the second quarter, scoring two quick TDs to tie the game at 14. Then things started to go awry. After Mizzou retook the lead with a good drive, Nate Sudfeld was picked off by defensive end Kony Ealy (yep, a DE), who took it 49 yards for a 28-14 lead. The play appeared to break the Hoosiers spirit, as the offense struggled to regain any further momentum as the Tigers padded their lead. Tre Roberson took over in the 4th quarter and provided a spark, bit it was too little, too late, in a disappointing performance for the Hoosiers.
Hero of the Hour: WR Cody Latimer – Receiving 8-136-1.
Next Up: Penn State (Oct 5th)
Beat Florida A&M 76-0
Braxton Miller sat out this game too, and Kenny Guiton had an ignominious start, throwing an early interception. Unfortunately for the Rattlers, that was the highlight of their night as they were utterly steamrolled by the Buckeyes. Guiton went on to throw 6 TD passes, and the OSU offense failed to score only one more time, punting late in the 3rd quarter. Running back Ezekiel Elliott, who’s normally buried on the depth chart, led with 162 yards and 2 TDs on just 14 carries. The real story of the day was the defense, which allowed FAMU to gain just 80 yards on offense. Granted the Rattlers are an FCS team, but this kind of domination is rare. Will this defense show up against the Badgers next week, or the one who allowed Cal to move the ball on them?
Hero of the Hour: QB Kenny Guiton – Passing 34-24-215-6-1, Rushing 1-5-0.
Next Up: Wisconsin
Beat Kent State 34-0
I wonder if KSU fancied their chances against the Nittany Lions after last week’s loss to UCF? The Flashes are a strong team in their own right and have held their own against some tough teams. Today was not their day. A missed field goal on Kent State’s opening drive was as good as it got for Kent State, as PSU dominated from then on, allowing 190 total yards (against a team that won 11 games last year) and a big old goose egg on the scoreboard. The Lions ran over the usually tough KSU defense to the tune of 287 yards, although Christian Hackenberg had his first bad day at the office, completing just 13 of 35 passes for 176 yards with a TD and an interception. Mark Weisman was money at the goalline, pounding in 3 short-yardage scores.
Hero of the Hour: The defense.
Next Up: @ Indiana (Oct 5th)
Lost to Wisconsin 41-10
After stepping up their game against Notre Dame last week, the Boilermakers returned to the tank this week with a sorry performance against Wisconsin. An early 10-point surge to get Purdue back into the game early in the second quarter suggested they could give the Badgers a battle, but they only manage TWO more drives in excess of three plays from then on. The offense did little outside of Rob Henry’s TD run – even their field goal came off an interception deep in Wisconsin territory. Henry finished with 18 completions out of 36 attempts, with just 135 yards, while the running attack accounted for 45 yards. The defense, on the other hand, allowed 388 rushing yards, with Melvin Gordon and James White rushing for 147 and 145 yards respectively. This could be a long season for the Boilermakers if they continue to play at this level.
Hero of the Hour: P Cody Webster – 9 Punts, 393 Yards, 2 Inside 20.
Next Up: Northern Illinois
Beat Purdue 41-10
After last week’s disappointing loss to Arizona State, the Badgers came out red-hot against the struggling Boilermakers. Purdue was never in this game, even though they pulled to within 14-10 in the second quarter. A combination of the powerful Wisconsin running attack and their stingy defense never allowed Rob Henry or Akeem Hunt room to breathe, let alone move. Forget last week’s loss to ASU; Wisconsin is good and has to be considered a contender in the Leaders. Again. Bring on the Buckeyes!
Hero of the Hour: RB Melvin Gordon and James White – Rushing 16-147-3 and 16-145-1 respectively.
Next Up: @ Ohio State
Beat Western Michigan 59-3
The Broncos have had some problems on offense so far this season, but have played tough on defense against what is essentially a Big Ten schedule. No one told Iowa. The Hawkeyes returned two punts and two interceptions for TDs, and the offense ran over the Broncos for 446 yards, 258 on the ground. Jake Rudock continues his development with 134 yards and 2 scores on 10 of 15 passing, but he has had his running attack to back him up to date. The defense was the key though, holding the Broncos to 209 yards and forcing 4 turnovers. BJ Lowery returned both of his interceptions for scores. Still, Iowa have looked better every week since their tough loss to Northern Illinois in week 1.
Hero of the Hour: PR Kevonte Martin-Manley – Receiving 1-6-0, Punt Returns 4-184-2.
Next Up: @ Minnesota
Beat Connecticut 24-21
What in the world is going on in Ann Arbor? A week after needing to hold on against MAC cellar-dwellers Akron, the Wolverines had to claw their way back from a 14-point deficit against UConn. Big Blue were again lucky to escape with the win after 4 turnovers, 3 by Devin Gardner and a muffed punt near their own endzone, gave the Huskies plenty of opportunities to put the game away. The Michigan defense was great though, allowing just 206 yards, and 1 conversion of 11 3rd down attempts. A key interception by Desmond Morgan got the Wolverines back in the game, and a pair of scores by Fitzgerald Toussaint put them in front. A last-ditch drive came up short (again), sparing the Wolverines many blushes. So, Michigan, who are you? A team that overlooked its last two opponents after some strong wins? A team who plays to the level of their opposition? Or just plain over-rated? We will find out in a couple of weeks.
Hero of the Hour: RB Fitzgerald Toussaint – Rushing 24-120-2, Receiving 2-7-0.
Next Up: Minnesota (Oct 5th)
Lost @ Notre Dame 17-13
You can blame the penalties (10-115) or coaching decisions all you want, but regardless of how questionable some of them may have been, the real problem was the offense, or to be precise, the passing game. After looking good last week, Connor Cook struggled against Notre Dame’s tough defense, completing just 16 of 32 passes for 135 yards and a TD. The inability to move the ball consistently hurt the Spartans immensely, and wasted a sterling effort by the defense, which held the Fighting Irish to just 220 yards. Tommy Rees managed just 142 yards passing after exceeding 300 in each of his last three games. The Spartans have to sort out their offensive woes or their defense may collapse if it has to carry games all season.
Hero of the Hour: S Kurtis Drummond – 7 Tackles, 2 for loss.
Next Up: @ Iowa (Oct 5th)
Beat San Jose State 43-24
Even though the offense was missing starting QB Phillip Nelson this week, the Golden Gophers still didn’t miss a beat, running over SJSU. Quarterback Mitch Leidner and running back David Cobb, who ran for 125 yards and 2 scores on 25 carries, paced the offense as San Jose State couldn’t slow them down, despite the lack of a complementary passing attack. The Gophers continue to be a second half team, flattening the Spartans after coming out of the break with just a 20-17 lead. Worryingly, David Fales passed for 439 yards and 3 TDs, although they picked him off twice.
Hero of the Hour: QB Mitch Leidner – Passing 12-5-71-0-0, Rushing 24-151-4.
Next Up: Iowa
Beat South Dakota State 59-20
After a poor second half against UCLA last week, the Cornhuskers didn’t exactly shine in the first quarter, as the Jackrabbits took a 17-14 lead courtesy of the rushing of Zach Zenner (21-202-2). Things improved markedly from there as Big Red dominated the rest of the game, finishing on a 45-3 kick. What is impressive is they played the whole game without injured QB Taylor Martinez, instead using a combination of Tommy Armstrong Jr and Ron Kellogg III, who combined for 305 yards and 2 TDs passing. After SDSU’s initial surge, the Nebraska defense took control and kept the Jackrabbits from sustaining drives. They also forced 3 turnovers, with Randy Gregory returning an interception for a score. With the B1G schedule beginning in 2 weeks, the Huskers have to show they can compete for an entire game.
Hero of the Hour: RB Ameer Abdullah – Rushing 15-139-1, Receiving 3-46-0.
Next Up: Illinois (Oct 5th)
Beat Maine 35-21
The Wildcats have looked strong in their last three games, yet were less than impressive against Maine on Saturday, despite taking a 21-0 lead in the 3rd quarter. Why? The defense was great, continually stymieing the Black Bear attack and taking two interceptions to the house, but the offense, traditionally the NU calling card, kept falling flat on its face after opening the game with a lightning TD drive. But when Maine QB Mark Wasilewski started hitting his passes and led a TD drive, the Wildcat offense (not the Houston Nutt version) responded in kind, and the teams traded scores (and fumbles) throughout the 4th quarter. Those pesky Bears wouldn’t go away, but NU never gave up their 14-point advantage. With the Buckeyes up next, the Wildcats can’t afford a slow start if they want to keep pace.
Hero of the Hour: DE Tyler Scott – 8 Tackles, 2 for loss, 1 Sack, 1 QBH, 1 Blocked FG.
Next Up: Ohio State (Oct 5th)
Topics: Connecticut Huskies, Football, Illinois Fighting Illini, Indiana Hoosiers, Iowa Hawkeyes, Kent State Golden Flashes, Michigan State Spartans, Michigan Wolverines, Minnesota Golden Gophers, Northwestern Wildcats, Notre Dame Fighting Irish, Ohio State Buckeyes, Penn State Nittany Lions, Purdue Boilermakers, San Jose State Spartans, South Dakota State Jackrabbits, Tyler Scott, Western Michigan Broncos, Wisconsin Badgers