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Sunday Morning Coming Down // Week 8

A Missive from the Doldrums

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 22 Iowa at Ohio State Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Ten B1G Things

  1. Nothing good comes from playing Iowa. You either beat up on a feckless bunch of 3-stars who already have the misfortune to be spending their college years in Iowa, or you lose to them in the most embarrassing fashion. Terrible proposition.
  2. Iowa ran for just 77 yards enroute to 158 yards of total offense.
  3. Ohio State ran for...66. Not great, Bob.
  4. Stroud owes the zebras a thank-you for the offsetting penalties that negated an absolutely disgusting end zone INT.
  5. This game was so boring that the did-the-ball-hit-the-ground-with-one-second-left debate in Maryland felt like compelling TV in its own right.
  6. The question of “Is Maryland for real” is now actually less clear in victory. Because Northwestern.
  7. Is there any compelling reason to keep Tom Allen at Indiana?
  8. Other than the absolute meltdowns over at Crimson Quarry, of course
  9. Wisconsin getting that nice dead cat (badger?) bounce that many companies experience after the board fires the CEO a few months ahead of the impending bankruptcy filing
  10. Three INTs by Aidan O’Connell didn’t hurt the Badgers’ odds either
  11. White-outs: Not just for consequential matchups against ranked opponents anymore
  12. Mo Ibrahim kept his FBS-leading streak of 100-yard games alive, thanks to a 4th-quarter TD drive (this of course came moments after the talking heads loudly predicted the end of his 15-game streak)
  13. Penn State looks just good enough to make next week terrifying for OSU fans
  14. UCLA should fit right in with the B1G West, after stinking out the house against a lower-ranked opponent with insufferable fans

The Rundown

Iowa at Ohio State | Buckeye victory does not inspire confidence, 54-10

GF3: This game was among the most painful to watch. Though the outcome was never in doubt, it looked as though Ohio State had received a government grant to research the existence of an absolute zero for Style Points against a hapless team. Add to that, it’s pretty clear we are not seeing Jaxon Smith-Njigba the rest of the year. His hamstring last for not even a whole series. They honestly just need to sit the kid, because at this point he’s been out of the offense so long OSU risks a situation like we saw with Braxton Miller in 2015, where they tried to wedge him into an offense that didn’t really have room for him.

The run game performance against Iowa’s defense was concerning, given the relative strength of OSU’s offensive line vs. Iowa’s other opponents this year. I wasn’t expecting the Bucks to run rough-shod over Iowa, but 100 yards as a team seemed like a not-unrealistic hope. Fortunately, the Manny Diaz Show doesn’t seem quite so adept at run stopping.

MaximumSam: That was a weird Iowa game. For once, the weird Iowa game resulted in Iowa getting blown off the map. Now you know how everyone else feels, weird Iowa.

Stewmonkey13: You say that like Iowa doesn’t lose incredibly stupid games on the regular.

Iowa’s offense is so bad it makes looking at the box score look like Iowa’s defense got torched. You know what just read Creighton’s nepotism article from a couple weeks ago, or read this one:

Indiana at Rutgers | Rutgers relegates Indiana, 24-17

BuffKomodo: There are a ton of different reasons this thing failed. But in the end, it all stops and ends with coaching. This season is on Walt Bell, Chad Wilt, Tom Allen, and Scott Dolson (and Fred Glass too). Everything from roster build to scheduling to assistant quality to on field performance has been piss poor. They’re a two minute drive and a last second field goal shank away from being 1-7 through 8 games. This team likely wins 0 more games this season and everything will probably be hunky-dory in the off-season again.

Well, just in case my post on Thursday wasn’t clear, I don’t think regime change is a good strategy this season. That said, my knives and pitchforks are getting sharpened and I’m getting a shit ton of lighter fluid because starting in game one of 2023 I’m going to be extremely vocal on criticizing Allen’s performance. Indiana is en route to two of its worst seasons in a row since 2011 and 2012, and it’s first two win season followed by a 3 win season since GERRY FUCKING DiNARDO. Justify that you Tom Allen defenders.

Northwestern at Maryland | Time had expired, 31-24

LPW: God fucking damnit. What a kick in the balls. We played competitive (or hell, Maryland might have played down to our level of ineptitude) and I got my hopes up that maybe, just maybe, we’ll get a conference win on this side of the Atlantic. The momentum shifted after Sullivan’s interception and we could not recover. Let’s see, what standard rant should I use after this loss: fire everyone? Put the coordinators in a catapult and send them away? Pass the Malört? Or should I just take solace in the face we lost by less? The Magic eight ball says yes. This sport is exasperating. Go ‘Cats.

MNW: For the second straight ‘Cats game, I was at a wedding. Too bad about the loss. Onto Iowa and an opening O/U around 34.5.

Minnesota at Penn State | At least Pennstater got to dress up, 45-17

misdreavus79: Didn’t watch. I heard there was a controversial pass interference call?

87townie: One of the more fun whiteout games I have attended. There were Chad Powers and Trace McSorley sightings. Tailgate was great. Lots of townies here for homecoming. Wasn’t a fan of Clifford’s first half dozen passes. Behind guys. Forcing throws and an ugly INT. But he rallied and did well. I was afraid this would be a let down, after the hamblasting we took at Michigan. But the guys did some good things and we got the W. 10-2 is still on the table.

WSR: All right, standing at my gate at BWI so I should probably take care of this before we board. The better team won. Pretty clear, innit? The Gophers defense did everything it could to keep the team in the game, and only trailing 17-10 at halftime was a damn miracle given how much we put the shackles on the offense until the last drive of the half. I honestly don’t think we could have tried to protect Kaliamakis more, and it didn’t matter. The OL was shook to start the game and that destroyed any chance of getting him into a groove handing the ball off to Mo. Overall, I thought he looked pretty good when he had time to drop back and actually make a read instead of wearing a Nittany Lion when he got there. I am pretty frustrated that he didn’t get a ton of help from his receivers, and holy crap how the hell did the refs miss the DPI on his pick? It didn’t matter for much other than aesthetics, but he didn’t deserve that INT.

Purdue at Wisconsin | Badgers bounce back by beating Brohm, 35-24

Kind of...(Chris): Wisconsin looked like...a decent team? I know. I know. All the Purdue people told us. And the hex seems real. But, of the previous 15 consecutive wins, how many did Wisconsin enter with a losing record? Seems pretty clear that Mertz is a better QB on the move (i.e., when he’s only scanning half the field). Not a recipe to beat really good teams, but there are none of those left on the schedule. More encouragingly, the OL is more cohesive and the defense is swarming to the ball again. If you want to play the “what if” game, UW could be 6-2 right now. But they’re not. Maryland is, though, and that’s who the Badgers see next, following a bye week. Will be really interesting to see what the interim coaching staff does with the extra week of prep time. A bowl seems eminently within reach now. (Hell, second in the division is reasonably on the table). And, if it all goes sideways, and I’m submitting a more morose entry two weeks from now, well, basketball tips off the next day anyway.

BoilerUp89: ESPN, you are a f-ing joke of a company. There is nothing wrong with staying with the end of a close game rather than changing to the game kicking off. That’s the right decision. But this is 2022. When I can stream games (on ESPN!) like McNeese-Nicholls or Holy Cross-Lafayette on my computer, I should be able to stream the game that is actually supposed to be on your main channel at that time. Instead, the Purdue-wisconsin game wasn’t listed your streaming options. Your TV channel said we could watch it on the ESPNApp. I wouldn’t know, because your app took FOREVER to load. It hadn’t finished getting to the main menu before the end of UC-cocaine ponies. Which again shows how much of a joke you are. I’m also told by others that already had the App downloaded, that they couldn’t even watch the start of the game, because apparently this is the worst app ever created. Coral is a better thing. TL,DR: ESPN, you are a joke and a disgrace to sports broadcasting and I’m looking forward to the Big Ten never being on your network again. On to the game recap.

Yep. What I told you would happen, happened. Readers voted in the power poll that I talk more about Scipio Africanus. As a reward for leading the Roman army to an overwhelming victory against their mortal enemies Carthage, Scipio’s friends and allies were prosecuted for supposedly misappropriating funds and bribery in the war effort. Scipio was forced to retired to the countryside and died under suspicious circumstances.