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Sunday Morning Coming Down // Week 10

All Eyes on Michigan (for a change)

NCAA Football: Purdue at Michigan Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Ten B1G Things

  1. OSU’s defense has not surrendered more than 17 points after playing 3 ranked opponents
  2. Rutgers had not allowed a play over 40 yards all year...until Treyveon Henderson’s 65-yard catch & run.
  3. Michigan’s defense has not surrendered more than 13 points after playing no ranked opponents
  4. J.J. McCarthy threw for 335 yards on 37 attempts. and (somehow) no touchdowns
  5. Drew Allar threw for 240 yards on 34 attempts and 4 touchdowns
  6. Okay, Terps, you’ve beaten the whole “September Maryland” joke into the ground
  7. Indiana beat Wisconsin with an offensive showing that produced 36 yards of offense in the second half
  8. With this win, Indiana snapped a two-decade home losing streak to Wisconsin
  9. Michigan State needed 4 different players throwing passes to beat Nebraska
  10. Those 4 players went a combined 15/24...a nearly 50% better success rate than Heinrich Haarberg for nearly double the yardage
  11. Illinois reaches new levels of unpredictable with a backup QB who completes 100% of his passes in a comeback victory
  12. Minnesota falls to 43-6 when leading at the half under Fleck, while Bert improves to 10-0 lifetime against the Gophers
  13. Northwestern had 1st & Goal from the 2-yard line, played all 4 downs, came away with no points, and lost by 3
  14. Brian Ferentz, we hardly knew ye (just kidding...we all knew you...especially Michigan)
  15. Extra: Congrats to Army to for showing 8-0 Air Force how to ball

The Rundown

Ohio State at Rutgers | Different Rutgers, same result, 35-16

GF3: Imagine scoring less than 35 points against Rutgers. I could never.

Anyway, another Pyrrhic victory for the Buckeyes, beating a very tough Rutgers team (touted as a “notable win” for Michigan by the CFP committee) at the cost of injuries to Josh Proctor and Josh Fryar. Rutgers’ defense is good, which is a weird thing to be saying. Their offense isn’t bad, but it’s not good enough to finish drives in the red zone.

Julian Fleming gives me hope that I might have college football career at Ohio State yet. I, too, was a good blocker against players under 200 lbs and I’m sure I can also drop 90% of passes I get my hands on. Look out Fleming, GF3 is gunning for your job.

RUReady4Brazil: Rutgers gave everything they had but Henderson and Ohio State was too much. I wouldn’t call it a moral victory per se, but it’s the first time they have ever even hung around with the Buckeyes. This will all be short lived though because no one will care about OSU if they lose to Iowa while if they beat Iowa it will be a huge feather in the cap. So no reason to dwell on this game too much because in a week, it will have been mostly forgotten.

Purdue at Michigan | Powerful performance by the clear No. 1, 41-13

RMB: Pretty good team. I have very real concerns about how they handle good pass rushers. 2023 Corum < 2022 Corum. 2023 Edwards <<< 2022 Edwards. The corners are a significant step down from last year, but the linebackers are better, and the D-Line is a lot better. Next week we travel to Happy Valley and we’ll learn if this team is as good as I think it is.

Brian: In somewhat of an uneven performance, Michigan still handled Purdue in a game that was never in question. Credit Michigan’s defense for keeping the Boilermaker offense from doing much of anything until the game’s final minutes, and quarterback JJ McCarthy for driving the offense. I’d there was a red flag for Michigan, it was that it (again) couldn’t get its running game on track. “We strive to be a balanced team,” McCarthy said after the game. They’ll need to be more of one next week, when the Wolverines head to Happy Valley to meet the once-defeated Nittany Lions.

BoilerUp89: Purdue won the second quarter 6-3. At least Purdue Pete made some money scouting for Ohio State during this game.

Editor: Imagine going a whole quarter and not scoring a TD against Purdue. At home. Honda McCord and OSU’s trash offense would never.

Penn State at Maryland | Franklin found his offense in his other pants, 51-15

misdreavus79: First of all, fuck Maryland. Always and forever.

Secondly, it definitely looks like once Drew Allar finally threw that interception, the weight of the world was finally off his shoulders. He was able to swiftly work through progressions, take what the Maryland defense was giving him, and get a few explosive plays in while were at it!

Oh, and turns out, when you have more than one wide receiver available to you, things open up quite nicely. Who knew! All in all, Penn State couldn’t have picked a better time to get some of the lingering issues we’ve been crying about to actually look like they’re being addressed. Onto Michigan!

P.S.: The score was 51-15

Larry31: Way back in June during Maryland week, devoted Penn State fan, Chalupabatman [something like that] did his best trolling by stating Maryland is gonna Maryland. They’ll look great in September and then limp their way to 6-6 or 7-5. Looks like he was spot-on. Same old Maryland. 5-0 in September but will have a losing conference record. I was so certain of this defeat that I didn’t watch a single second and only checked the score three times, 21-7, 35-15, and 41-15. I don’t know what the final score was. Whatever. Of course, the cruel/laughable irony [depending on your perspective] is that Penn state suffers from a similar malaise. A James Franklin-led Penn State team has never beaten Michigan and Ohio State in the same season, which is pretty much the standard by which they would be consided elite and get into the CFP. I suspect Chalupabatman, and most Penn State fans, would gladly root for Maryland football’s version of success if it meant that Penn State could break through their own seemingly unbeakable ceiling. FWIW, I’d totally root for a Penn State CFB berth if it meant Maryland could have a 9-3 or 10-2 season. Oh, well. Basketball season starts on Tuesday.

Wisconsin at Indiana | Tom Allen says the milk’s gone bad, 20-14

BuffKomodo: A pulse has been detected in Bloomington, Indiana. In a stunning turn of events, the Indiana Hoosiers beat Wisconsin for the second time since 2003. Don’t misunderstand my lack of enthusiasm here for disappointment in the win. However the Hoosiers are now 3-6, and require winning the next 3 games to get to a bowl game. Those 3 games are winnable, but I’m not sure Indiana has rattled off 4 straight B1G wins in quite a while, excluding 2020.The offense was pretty okay today and the defense was admirable. All around it was a joy to have fun watching Indiana football again. Next up is an away game at Illinois who is sitting at 4-5 and looking to take their own steps towards bowl eligibility. IF Indiana is able to pull off the road win against Illinois, I’ll start to get a bit more excited. Until then, nice job Hoosiers and see you next week.

Kind of...(Chris): Indiana is not a very good football team. But Wisconsin is banged up (not an excuse), and is prone to doing dumb things regularly (see, not an excuse). Indiana played hard, and, even for one of the worst teams in the league, that can be good enough against an opponent that is mediocre at best and inclined to doing dumb things.Phil Longo is clearly out of his depth. Luke FIckell has been low-key apologizing for him the last couple of weeks. But Luke Fickell doesn’t trust his kicker to attempt 50 yard FGs, so the whole coaching staff might be out of its depth. It’s all rather gross.

MC ClapYoHandz: The best way I can describe this game: two-win Indiana was leading throughout in an upset win, and in the 4th quarter their crowd was booing their offense.

Nebraska at Michigan State | Sparty finds a spark, 20-17

BRT: Huskers had an amazing chance to get themselves bowl-eligible for the first time in eons against a 2-5 team. What could go wrong?

A lot, it turns out. When your crappy offense stays crappy and your normally sound defense turns in a mediocre performance, it’s tough to beat anyone, even a dispirited Sparty. Rhule may be a better coach than we’ve seen in Lincoln for a minute, but unfortunately, there’s still something in the air that seems to make the Huskers utterly allergic to any modicum of success.The only upside here is that I did call this in this week’s picks, proving once again that while I may not know much, I do know Husker football.

And to all the MSU fans in the game thread who kept insisting I didn’t know who Nebraska was or what they’d do with the game on the line? I know you’re proud of “Sparty NOOO!” and you’ve had your moments, but NO ONE can blow a game like the Huskers. Never, ever question my authority on this point again, you fools.

Dead Read: It was a particularly anemic effort from the offense, and a step back from the defense. Put those together and you get a loss. Nebraska is good only on its best days, and this was not one of them. Fortunately, none of the teams left on the schedule are unbeatable. Unfortunately, Nebraska still has it in them to lose to any or all of them. (edited)

Illinois at Minnesota | Illini win Keys to a ‘76 Volaré trophy, 27-26

AlmaOtter: It’s just a game. Sports are inherently dumb. The investment of energy and emotion never pays out as much as you’d expect. And that awful sinking feeling as you watch your team choke away a lead in the 4th quarter? It doesn’t have to end next year. It can go on for years, for decades, for lifespans.But sometimes, that last-gasp pass from the backup QB with a family legacy at the school hits the mark in the most beautiful way. Sometimes, everything comes together for a dramatic win. It doesn’t have to be for the national championship. Hell, it can be for a shitty 4-5 team that doesn’t deserve to sneak into a bowl.But sometimes, so damn rarely, the luck turns. Things actually work out for your team. And that’s why we’re here and why we watch and why we care.

thumpasaurus: What my folks are missing is that Bret Bielema is now like…what…15-3 coming off a bye week in his career?What a moment for Isaiah Williams. He’s quietly become one of the league’s best receivers. Illini football often sees moments as explosive as a backup quarterback finding the native son for a game winner with under a minute, but they’re usually done by the other team.For the first time in my life, I finally truly believe that life is short. The football corollary is that every win is special. This one meant a lot to me.

He was a high school QB: Bert is now 10-0 against Minnesota. That was fun. Minnesota is not a great site for college football, but the fans are good sports.At an alumni event before the game, Josh Whitman took a pot shot at Hunter Dickinson. That was also fun. (edited)

WSR: I’ve seen worse losses, and I’ve seen more infuriating losses, but I’ve never been more upset about a game I thought we’d lose before it started.

Iowa at Chicago’s B1G Team | A Prayer for Brian Ferentz, 10-7

MNW: Iowa and Northwestern did exactly what you’d expect Iowa and Northwestern to do in the year 2023. Kirk Ferentz took timeouts and then took knees at the end of the first half, played the final drive of the game to kick a 50-yard field, and won yet again. (Drew Stevens is a hell of a kicker.) This final campaign of the Big Ten West is surely motivated by nothing but spite for Beth Goetz, and the cynic in me will just enjoy the ride. A real masterpiece, Ferentzes.At this point I’m not sure I’ve ever seen Northwestern pick up 4th and 1 in my 18ish years of fandom, and I’m not sure I ever will. Brendan Sullivan limped around the field in the fourth quarter on the “grass” of Wrigley Field, and I want someone’s head to roll for how awful that looked. It was just terrible, and maybe it’ll look better against a defense not coached by the inimitable Phil Parker, but man, the ‘Cats deserved better here.I’ve processed most of the rest of it in this article. I’m furious that Northwestern continues to play this unsafe and counterproductive sham of a game, and I leave it less irritated that I watched bad football and got emotionally invested than I am irritated that it happened in the first place. On to wisconsin.

LPW: Damn it. After a scoreless first half, Northwestern and Iowa finally bothered to score points, leading to 7 - 7. Then Iowa scored a 52 yard field goal and Northwestern could not answer. Game over. Shit. Just fire offensive coordinator Bajakian now. We can’t let Iowa be the only team getting rid of decrepit OCs.