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Mail Bag - Who Says Maryland is the Biggest Tire Fire in the B1G?

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This week's mailbag was stuffed with great questions. Who is the best punter in the B1G? What team is the biggest tire fire? Which current undefeated B1G team loses first? If those questions get you fired up, come on in...if not, you're probably a communist with a secret love affair with an SEC team.

Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Q: Who is the best punter in the B1G?

WSR: Peter Mortell.  Best punter, best punter-related twitter account.

Stew: It’s probably Mortell, but I’m going to throw some love at Dillon Kidd and Marshall "The Demon" Koehn.  Kidd is averaging 47.9 y/p, which would qualify him for #7 in the country, but he doesn’t have enough punts to qualify (!!!).  And Koehn has punted twice, rugby style for 64 yards, and 49 yards, but pinning the opponent inside the 10.  And at some point (WI), Koehn is going to fake this and take off and run.

Townie: I’ll give you the top three, based on average punt length: #1: Dillon Kidd from Iowa (47.9 yd avg); #2: Cameron Johnston from OSU (47.4 yd avg); and Jake Hartbarger from MSU (46.5 yd avg).

Q: Indiana is 3-0...How confident are the "writers" of OTE that Indiana will make a bowl?

C4B: It’s honestly way too early to even be thinking about this. For as good as they’ve looked at times this year, it’s still Indiana football, where basically nothing should be taken for granted. Every time save once that the team has looked on the cusp of returning to bowl season in the last decade, something has gone wrong (the exception being 2007, where the Hoosiers rode a wave of emotion into the Insight Bowl). Go to 4-0, then things look pretty positive.

WSR: If they beat Wake Forest like they should it’s almost a layup, if I may put it in a sports term that Indiana fans would understand.  Ohio State, Michigan State, and Iowa may have too much talent to overcome, but that’s about it.  Every other game on their slate should be a chance to get closer to 6 wins.

Townie: At 4-0, I’d give it 80% likely. I see three probable wins (Rutgers, Maryland, and Purdue) and at least one more possible win (Penn State) on the schedule. If they can stay healthy (cough...Jordan Howard...cough), six wins looks likely. It would take a concerted effort on IU’s part to go 1-3 or 0-4 in those games. I think they make a bowl.

Q: Three weeks in, Jordan Howard of Indiana is far and away the leader in rushing yards in the Big Ten. Will that hold for the entire season, and if not, who will be the Big Ten’s leading rusher?

WSR: It’s not unreasonable to think that Howard could pull it off.  Indiana has a very favorable schedule, being in the East and getting Purdue as one of their crossover opponents.  If he can stay healthy with the head start he’s got, it could be his to lose.

C4B: He’s currently got about 160 yards more than Justin Jackson from Northwestern, who is his next closest

competition. Will he stay in front for the whole season? It’d be nice, but Jackson might end up being the Melvin Gordon to Howard’s Tevin Coleman.

Townie: I like Jordan Howard, but he hasn’t faced a front like he’ll see in the B1G. Let me put this conference in perspective for you...eleven of our squads rank in the top fifty teams in rushing defense: Nebraska (7), Michigan (10), Wisconsin (11), Iowa (12), PSU (14), Illinois (27), Rutgers (31), MSU (32), OSU (36), Northwestern (39), and Indiana (47). Now go look at Indiana’s schedule.

Q: Whose side do you take in the epic Biels-Kliff battle of the words?

WSR: You’re kidding, right? Has anyone rational ever sided with Bielema on anything?

Townie: I’m so on Kliff’s side in that. I hated Bielema when he was in the B1G. I hate him more now that he’s in the SEC. I love to see bullies get kicked in the nards. That’s what Kingsbury did.

Stew: Both!  I mean, Kliff is being a bit of a douche, and Bert is being a giant ass.  It’s not actually hurting anyone, and is pretty entertaining.  I hope they keep it up.  We need more coaches like Spurrier.

MNW: I’m on Stew’s side, closer to BERT’s side. I know, right? Bielema’s LOOK AT TEH REKURDS is exactly what all of us OTE chucklefucks do, and he’ll fit right back in here. #BERT4Iowa (WSR: "REKURDS"? Like 11-18 overall and 2-15 in conference play at Arkansas?)

Q: On a scale of the Nebraska fanbase to the Penn State fanbase, how insufferable do you think terp fans will be during shootyhoops?

WSR: Oh God, they’re going to be up there with Minnesota hockey fans.  It’s going to be bad.

Townie: I’m not sure how Penn State fans got to be an extreme of insufferability. I don’t think you know many of us. And possibly the ones you met weren’t good examples. I find most to be more midwestern in our fandom.

Stew: #FSUTwitter

MNW: I don’t know, but I’m thinking they can make some serious noise in the ACC this year. Next question.

Q: Who loses first among the current undefeated B1G teams?

WSR: Well, Northwestern is going to lose their 1st B1G game.  It just comes down to beating them faster than somebody emerges from the Iowa vs. wisconsin or Ohio State vs. Indiana games.


Iowa plays at 11am, so I’m inclined to say Iowa. Assuming Iowa escapes, then, it’ll be Indiana. HAPPY STRONG DISLIKE WEEK, WSR.

Townie: This weekend is going to be big fun. Hate! Hate! Hate! Where’s my popcorn?

Q: If you had to attend a B1G school that isn’t your own, which would you choose?

MNW: I tried that for PhD work. It didn’t go so well. Consequently, fuck every other Big Ten school that’s not Northwestern (and I’m a little more than mad at them, too).

WSR: Um, Northwestern? I know I shouldn’t say that this week, but I think that’d have to be the choice because it’s not a terrible college and it’s not too far from Minnesota by plane.

Townie: Hell, I fled from Pennsylvania as fast as my pickup truck would go.. I ain’t heading to the midwest for nothing.

Q: Best type of whiskey: Scotch (single malt or blended), bourbon, rye, Irish, whatever? Also, best post-meal digestif?

Stew: Don’t go blended.  You’re just not going to get the flavor.  Personally, I’m not a giant bourbon fan, as I think it tends to be a bit too thick and sweet.  And there are a lot of types of Scotch, I prefer a nice, bright, and dry Highland.  But in winter, or if you’re feeling particularly self-loathing, a nice dark, smokey, peaty Islay will do the trick.  I also like rye, because it tends to be dryer, and mixes better; a rye old-fanshioned is the only old fashioned (fuck your brandy, WI).  But my very favorite whiskey is an Redbreast, a pot distilled Irish whiskey.  It’s great.  Go get some.

WSR: It’s Irish. I’ll have to get some Redbreast because I don’t think I’ve ever seen Stew be wrong about food or drink, but I keep Jameson 12 on my desk at work and 2 Gingers at home because it’s such a great mixing whiskey.

Townie: I’m with WSR on this one. My first love with whiskey is a nice glass of Tullimore Dew or Bushmills Black. I’m a fan of bourbon too. I have a bottle of Basil Hayden stashed away for special occasions. I’m probably alone in liking a glass of grappa as a digestif. Jacobo Poli makes some excellent varieties.

Q: what school currently has the biggest dumpster fire of a team?
Will Abbott

Stew: 3 contenders here, [ERROR SCHOOL NOT FOUND], Maryland, and Buttgers.  I think Purdue is out, because they’re Purdue, and who really cares about something that actually doesn’t really exist.  I think Maryland may be worse than Rutgers, but Rutgers gets bonus points for being just so damn stupid in how everything’s been handled. I think it’s virtually tied, and a tie goes to Buttgers.

Tire Fire

Q: Who do you want to see in "expendables 4" that you haven’t yet seen but fist the character types?
Captain SoCo

Townie: If you want kitsch you have to go with the Hoff. Who better than the original Knight Rider? If you are serious, I’d say Denzel Washington. He’s now an iconicly cool ass kicker. His role as John Creasy, the alcoholic bodyguard in Man on Fire is the stuff of legend.

Q: What is the best one-episode-only character on The Simpsons?
Viceroy Fizzlebottom

Stew: Frank Grimes (Homer’s Enemy) got the mention in the post, and it is one of the very best episodes.

But I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention Sherry Bobbins.  It’s a musical episode, which is fun.

Also, the ending is just as awesome as Homer’s Enemy.

WSR: This is tough, because some of my favorite episodes have the best one-off characters (Homer vs. The 18th Amendment, Marge vs. the Monorail), but it’s Hank Scorpio.


What is the optimal Chipotle order?
Viceroy Fizzlebottom

Stew: The premise is flawed, because Pancheros far superior to Chipotle.

WSR: Burrito, brown rice, ask for chicken and steak (they give you more if you ask for two meats), corn salsa, a little bit of lettuce, and extra cheese.

So there you have it folks. Your questions answered again. We'll be doing this again in a week, so we need more questions. Let us hear about it in the comments.

Your Friends,

Townie and the OTE "Writers"