Big Ten Football Week 6 Preview
Iowa and Minnesota have bye’s this week…
My Record….40-12 76.9%
Michigan State (3-2, 0-1) @ Indiana (2-2, 0-1) Noon Big Ten Network: The Spartans hold a 42-13-2 lead in the series vs the Hoosiers…pretty much an elimination game for these two teams as far as chasing their respective division titles, more so for the Spartans than the Hoosiers though….2 conference L’s pretty much dictate that IF you make a bowl game, it will be played between Christmas and New Years…and that isn’t a good thing in college football. Statistically, Michigan State is the best defensive unit in the Big Ten…it really isn’t even close…the shocker is that Indiana is one of the better offenses in the conference. Dantonio better get this W…this Saturday begins a murderous stretch of three road games in four weeks for his squad….if his team and it’s consistent offensive struggles can’t win at The Rock…then it may mark the end of the Spartans chances at winning the Legends Division in 2012….MSU will win, look for the La’Veon Bell show to get rolling…MSU wins 27-17.
Northwestern (5-0, 1-0) @ Penn State (3-2, 1-0) Noon ESPN: Penn State leads the series vs Northwestern 12-3..the Wildcats have lost 5 straight to the Nittany Lions and have only won once at Beaver Stadium (2004)….What has really been the secret to the Wildcats success so far has been their rushing game…they are 2nd in the Big Ten at almost 256 yards per game…the Nittany Lions are 8th vs the run this year…herein lies the marquee matchup on Saturday…PSU’s defense seems to be rising to each and every challenge as they face them…so I wouldn’t be surprised to see them slow down Northwestern, but The Cats have a lot of other weapons, more I think than Penn State…This will be Northwestern’s first road game since the opening weekend…I think they will struggle and I like Penn State to get it done at home with their own running game..PSU wins 24-20.
Illinois (2-3, 0-1) @ Wisconsin (3-2, 0-1) 3:30pm ESPN2: Illinois leads the series between the two schools 36-35-7….The Badgers have won 6 of the last 7 meetings and haven’t lost to the Fighting Illini in Camp Randall since 2002 (0-3)…Brett Bielema is 3-1 vs Illinois and 2-0 in Madison…these may be two of the most enigmatic teams in the Big Ten right now…How good is Wisconsin?…as long as Brett Bielema has been coaching the Badgers (since 2006) I never thought I would see this day..Wisconsin is last in the Big Ten in rushing offense…dead last. But just above them is Illinois….very uncharacteristic for these two teams…by the way, Wisconsin is also last in passing offense…Tim Beckman needs to stop the bleeding coming from his team… but it’s going to be tough to triage this in the next two games…this week and then a trip to Ann Arbor…then he gets his bye week…but by then it will be too late…Badgers win at home 24-14.
Michigan (2-2, 0-0) @ Purdue (3-1, 0-0) 4:00pm Big Ten Network: Michigan leads the series vs Purdue 42-14…the Wolverines have won the last 2 games in the series and they have won 3 of the last 4 at Ross Ade Stadium…Purdue has been one of those teams that Denard Robinson hasn’t been able to figure out…he is lifetime 22-35 for 346 with 3 INT’s and only 1 TD pass…but they have held him in check rushing too..in three meetings, he has totaled just 128 yards on the ground and never gained more than 68 yards in a game…my point is this; he hasn’t played his best vs Purdue and this may be the best Boilermaker defense he has faced…if he doesn’t get some help rushing (Fitz) he will not win in West Lafayette….the Purdue rushing defense is 4th in the Big Ten at giving up just over 105 per game…uh-oh UM fans…Purdue beats big Blue 27-23.
Nebraska (4-1, 1-0) @ Ohio State (5-0, 1-0) 8:00pm ABC: Ohio State leads the series 2-1…and the Corn has never won in Columbus (0-2)…the best rushing team in the Big Ten (Nebraska) faces one of the better run defenses in the conference (OSU is 3rd vs the run)…two of the most efficient passers will be starring in this one Taylor Martinez is #1 in the Big Ten and Braxton Miller is 4th…I really can’t imagine Braxton Miller making it through this season if Urban continues to call his number in a hauntingly Mark Dantonio-like fashion..but if they can find a rushing game this week and keep the ball away from that Corn offense, I like their chances…the Buckeye defense needs to get better…beating an anemic Spartan offense is one thing, but doing it to the Corn is another story…I think the Bucks will have last year’s game on their mind…Bucks expose the Corn’s defense and beat Taylor Martinez 28-20.