You know what’s interesting about college sports? Call it “the circle of life”, call it “karma” (j/k, don’t do that) call it “Brent Musberger’s Vegas Connections”, but the fact is that things just seem to work themselves out.
In spite of efforts to create story lines and “narrative”, teams win and teams lose and everyone gets to play in a bowl. Well, almost everyone.
It’s like I’ve been saying all season- “If you do well, will you not be accepted?” Play well, win the game you’re in, and let the chips fall where they may.
Sure, it’s great that you’re averaging a metric bucketload of points every week, but when you don’t hit that target what will you do? Case in point: Texas A&M, Oregon, and Baylor combined for 41 points in their three losses. yesterday. That’s less than Oregon and Baylor were each averaging per game.
As the prophet said, “Everyone’s got a plan until they get hit in the mouth”.
The Ducks went down in spectacular fashion, giving Rich Rodriguez a home upset of a nationally ranked team that will surely a) earn him an extension and b) give Michi1gAAn fans eternal heartburn. Not only did Mariotti throw his first interception of the year in the game as a result of that great play you see above, but he then tossed his second on the way to a 42-16 loss in Tuscon. It’s not that the Ducks were without flash and sizzle… it’s just that they never found a rhythm and were unable to play Stanford football.
Baylor came into Stillwater not having won there in forever… and left the same way. The nation’s top offensive team was unable to deal with the different looks that TBPU gave them, and struggled to get their high octane offense going.
In addition, their vaunted defensive front didn’t create any consistent pressure or stop Oklahoma State’s bigger specialists from making play after play. I guess the Lord helps those who help their Chelf.
Helmet sticker goes to the “turf monster”, though, who seemed to be the leading tackler for both teams. He also made a big play by interfering with a Baylor snap late in the game to solidify the win for the up and coming Cowboy team.
As for Johnny Freaking Football, he and the Aggies continued their trend of underperforming against top competition. As our friend @FightOnTwist pointed out earlier in November, Manziel is an amazing quarterback, but his interceptions often lead to opposing teams’ scores; and other than the win in Tuscaloosa, he’s been pretty pedestrian versus teams that are nationally ranked.
Against LSU on Saturday, his one TD pass was coupled with only 1g completions and two interceptions as the Aggies fell again to LSU by a 34-10 score. I guess you could say he got beaten like a… well… yeah. Read More
Today’s soundtrack thanks our Veterans for all that they’ve done…
Ok, class… time for a quiz. What did we learn this week?
We learned that the template for beating Oregon has not changed. Control the ball and the clock with power running, Don’t turn the ball over, Take advantage of turnovers, and Hold on for dear life.
While this would seem to be the obvious solution to beating any team, Stanford has certainly shown that it’s a template for stopping one of the most powerful offenses in the country. By continuing to do so on Thursday night, the Cardinal looked like Ohio State and Auburn and LSU… and the Duck Dynasty were bumped off the path to the National Title game.
If that wasn’t enough, on Saturday the Head Duck even showed his newest uniform… and this one will probably not be welcomed with open arms in Eugene.
We also learned something that we should have already known; sometimes these are the most difficult of lessons. Even here at tBBC we’ve highlighted again and again that “Big Game Bob” is a myth, that other than a BCS game against UConn (not a difficult thing, no matter what Michigan fans will tell you) and some wins over Texas during their programmatic slide, the Sooners have not managed to win the big one at anywhere near a dominant success rate.
Even this year they were embarrassed by a Texas Team that was searching for it’s identity, and have a “quality win” over a Texas Tech team who’s now dropped three in a row. We should have known better than to expect wonders from the team from Norman, but there Buckeye fans were, hoping that they’d handle a Baylor team that’s been setting scoreboards on fire.
We forgot that they have no downfield passing game, and their running game is predicated on a fullback at quarterback. And so, even though it looked close at the outset, we couldn’t be too surprised when Oklahoma collapsed in a heap of it’s own making.
And Baylor? Well, Baylor continues to look absolutely fabulous. With contests against TTU, TBPU and Texas upcoming in their season, the Bears are by no means shoo-ins for the conference title, but the path is pretty clear.
To be fair to the Longhorns, they’ve turned the season around and remained undefeated after their overtime win in the first Texas trip to Morgantown as a part of the new conference configuration. Judging by the responses on Shaggy Bevo, fans are somewhat torn by this turn of events- Winning is good, but how can they fire Mack if he manages to bring home a B12 Title this year? Read More
OK, I’m starting to feel a little nauseated.
This pick ‘em thing is not working out like I planned.
Of course I expected to win. Who expects to lose other than the Tampa Bay Buccaneers?
Let’s recap our last week of picks, which was two weeks ago. Took a week off to attend the funeral of my 95-year-old grandmother in South Bend.
So our picks from the previous week included both Gary and myself picking Penn State over TTUN and Nebraska over Purdon’t.
Gary took Sparty and the Badgers, while I incorrectly took Indiana and Northwestern. Blech!
Once again we don’t have a consensus for this week’s picks.
Gary and I agree that Ohio State will beat Penn State, Nebraska will beat Minnesota and that Northwestern will win at Iowa.
But again, we differ in another game.
I like Illinois to defend the home field against Sparty, who couldn’t score with a pocket full of change in a …. well, never mind.
“Sticking with my hometown boy Dantonio to bring me success in beating down a Chicago Blackhawks fan,” Gary said smugly.
Illinois can’t stink all the time, right?
So to recap:
Standings after four weeks:
The B1G 10 season is about to kick into full gear and two of your favorite BBC writers are going head-to-head the rest of the way.
Each week yours truly and Gary will pick the games that matter We may agree, we may not. And when one of us is right and Gary is wrong (it’s starting already) there will no holds barred.
It’s a light week so lets get right into it. We will include the 2 non-conference games as well.
Wisconsin at Ohio State
No differences of opinion here. We both predict an Ohio State victory over the Badgers.
Iowa at Minnesota
Gary likes Minnesota. I like Iowa.
In choosing the Gophers, Gary opined “I think the two teams are evenly matched.” He gives Minnesota the home-field edge as the margin of victory.
Iowa has been stuck in reverse since losing to Ohio State in a de facto Big 10 title game a few years ago. Kirk Ferentz has been feeling the heat and I think the Hawkeyes will get the big win they need.
Northern Illinois at Purdue Read More
Gary Russell and I are covering the B1G Tourney live again although it’s not actually from Chicago! Some last minute travel plans fell apart and we are hanging out at his house in Zanesville covering the games! Hope you enjoy the updates!
#6 Iowa versus #11 Northwestern
The first half of the day one night cap has been all Iowa. They hold a 36-22 lead at halftime and the score doesn’t reflect how dominating the Hawkeyes have been. The Wildcats didn’t score until the 12:30 mark of the first half. Iowa has been very balanced on the offensive end. 8 different players have scored for the Hawkeyes, and none of socred more than 7 points. As painful as it is to say, Iowa’s Aaron White leads all scorers with 7 points. Northwestern is being led by Freshman Alex Olah’s 6 points.
Iowa didn’t quite dominate the second half like they did the first half as they did their best impression of Michigan in letting a team hang around. The Wildcats refused to go away getting the lead under ten several times and even down to seven at one point. Unfortunately for Northwestern, timely three point shooting from Mike Gesell and Roy Devyn Marble combined with a Flagrant One foul by Reggi Hearn kept pushing the Iowa lead back to double digits. In the end, Iowa knocked off Northwestern 73-59.
Iowa will now face Michigan State tomorrow evening at apprixmately 9:00 EST. We hope you enjoyed day 1 of the Big Ten Tournament. Remember to check back with us tomorrow as we update with all the action from Day 2 of the tournament! Read More
After having the weekend off, Ohio State came into tonight’s game against Minnesota looking to rebound from their disastrous offensive performance in the second half of last Thursday’s loss to Nebraska. With a 14-11 record coming into this game and only four games remaining in the regular season, the sense of urgency for the Buckeyes was off the charts as they needed to win out in order to have any hope of making the NCAA tournament as an at-large selection.
Ohio State’s recent shooting woes reared their ugly head at the start of tonight’s game as the Buckeyes struggled to make any shot. Fortunately for OSU, a series of turnovers and fouls by Minnesota prevented the Golden Gophers from taking full advantage and the game was tied at 8 seven minutes into the first half. At this point Minnesota started to clean up its sloppy play, taking care of the ball and cutting down on turnovers which fueled a 11 to 2 to give the Gophers a 19-10 lead with just under eight minutes remaining in the half. The Buckeyes finally managed to stop the skid, forcing some turnovers and drawing a few fouls to help them slowly cut into the deficit and only trail 24-20 with just over a minute remaining in the half. OSU would miss a couple scoring opportunities in the final minute and the Gophers would make the final basket of the half to lead 26-20 at the break.
In a lengthy regular season that results in a conference tournament followed by a national championship tournament, it’s hard to call a game on a Wednesday night against Minnesota a “must win” game. But that’s exactly what tonight’s battle at the Schottenstein Center with the Minnesota Golden Gophers was for our Ohio State Buckeyes basketball team. Coming off a horrible loss on Sunday at Wisconsin and with Michigan State looming this Sunday, the Buckeyes needed the Gophers to right the ship and did just that in a convincing 71-45 win.
With the win the Buckeyes improve to 19-7 on the year, 9-5 in the Big Ten.
Aaron Craft’s buzzer beating three ended what was a first half of missed opportunities for Ohio State. The Buckeye defense regained its lost mojo and forced Minnesota into 12 first half turnovers but could only convert the miscues into ten points. The Bucks lead 29-23 at the half, but you had the feeling they could have blown the game wide open at several different spots.
The second half turned out to be a different story. The Buckeyes continued to clamp down on defense, meanwhile shots began to fall and easy transition buckets found them up 41-31 at the 12:00 mark and they never looked back.
Deshaun Thomas led all scorers with 19. He was followed for Ohio State by Shannon Scott with 11 and Laquinton Ross with 10. Minnesota was led by Andre Hollins with 11 and Oto Osnieks with 10.
The Buckeyes have now won 6 straight over the Golden Gophers. Tonight’s 26 point win is the largest in the series with Minnesota since the Buckeyes abused the Gophers 94-63 on March 4th 1992. Read More
After a debacling at the hands of Wisconsin, the Buckeyes are back at home looking to right the ship against the Minnesota Golden Gophers.
Today’s game is scheduled for 7 PM EST on the Big Ten Network. The LiveBlog is scheduled to start 15 minutes before tip.