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Buckeyes Buckeye Archive Big Ten Recap - Week 4
Written by Dan Wismar

Dan Wismar

UM ND1Conference play begins this weekend in the Big Ten, and that may be the only thing that can put an end to the entirely legitimate critique of the league’s non-conference performance. Big Ten teams were 7-3 this past weekend (Indiana and Purdue were idle) and in the only contest against a ranked team, Michigan was outclassed by No. 11 Notre Dame in South Bend.

In other action, B1G teams were able to get by Idaho State, South Dakota, Eastern Michigan and Louisiana Tech...oh wait...scratch that last one.

This week there are five conference matchups on the schedule (Purdue hosts Marshall, and Michigan is idle), and beginning October 6, all teams will be in conference play. If nothing else, that will allow for a shorter Recap for the rest of the season. To the games...



Wisconsin 37 - UTEP 26
Wisky UTEP1Halfway through the 4th quarter of this one the Badgers were clinging to a 23-19 lead over the Miners, and their star running back Montee Ball had left the game with a head injury.  But Wisconsin has two other capable backs in James White and Melvin Gordon, and each scored a TD in the final minutes to help the Badgers pull away and move to 3-1 for the season. UW recovered a fumbled kickoff after White’s 4th quarter score, and Gordon scored on the first play from scrimmage to give the Badgers two TD’s in 15 seconds. Joel Stave has replaced Danny O’Brien as the Badgers’ starting QB, and he went 12 for 17 for 210 yards, including completions of 47 and 60 yards to Jared Abrederis.  Recap  (Wisconsin 3-1, Next game: 9/29 at Nebraska)

Central Michigan 32 - Iowa 31
Iowa was stunned by the Chippewas of CMU Saturday, giving up nine points in the final 45 seconds of the game to drop to 2-2 on the season. Central Michigan was coming off a 41-7 drubbing by Michigan State the week before, but they led this game at halftime and through three quarters, and then rallied with a late touchdown and an onside kick recovery to set up their last second field goal to win it. Last week’s Hawkeye rushing hero, walk-on fullback Mark Weisman, had another huge day for Iowa with 217 rushing yards and three touchdowns on 27 carries. QB James Vandenberg was 16 of 25 passing, for 215 yards and a TD.  Recap  (Iowa 2-2, Next game: 9/29 vs Minnesota)

Ohio State 29 - UAB 15
OSU UAB1The Buckeyes started slowly once again, managing just one first down in the first quarter, and surrendering a blocked punt for a touchdown to fall behind 9-0. A second quarter rally put them up 21-12 at the half, but UAB kept the pressure on the favored Bucks, closing to 21-15 in the 4th. Braxton Miller scored the second of his two rushing TD’s with five minutes to play, and the two-point conversion provided the final margin of victory. Poor tackling and dropped passes again plagued OSU, and the next complete game this group plays will be their first of the year. Jordan Hall had his first career 100-yard game, and junior tailback Rod Smith got in on the action with his first TD of the season. Recap  (Ohio State 4-0, Next game: 9/29 at Michigan State)

Northwestern 38 - South Dakota 7
The Wildcats remained unbeaten on the season with an easy win over FCS opponent South Dakota. Northwestern’s diminutive tailback Venric Mark scored touchdowns on runs of 3, 4, and 6 yards, as the ‘Cats built a 28-0 halftime lead and cruised into league play at 4-0. The Wildcats threw the ball just 15 times, completing 12, as both Kain Coulter and Trevor Siemian took snaps at QB. Mark led a strong Northwestern ground attack with his 117 yards, as the ‘Cats out-rushed the Coyotes 277-51. Recap  (Northwestern 4-0, Next game: 9/29 vs Indiana)

Michigan State 23 - Eastern Michigan 7
The Buckeyes weren’t the only ones to struggle at home against a winless underdog on Saturday. The Spartans trailed the Eagles of EMU by a 7-3 count at halftime before rallying behind a 253 yard rushing performance by Le’Veon Bell. EMU held the lead at 7-6 until just over a minute remained in the 3rd quarter, but Bell wore them down in the end, and the Eagles proved incapable of running the ball (46 yards) and converting on 3rd down (2 for 14). Spartan quarterback Andrew Maxwell went 16 for 29 passing, but he was victimized by several drops by his receivers. He hit on one TD pass, to emerging tight end Dion Sims. Recap  (Michigan State 3-1, Next game: 9/29 vs Ohio State)

Nebraska 73 - Idaho St. 7
Nebraska ISU1The No. 25 Cornhuskers are in the process of casting themselves as Legends Division favorites with their high-scoring offense along with the stumbling of their co-favorites Michigan and Michigan State. Husker tailback Rex Burkhead (pictured) rushed for 119 yards and two TD’s to prove that he has no lingering after-effects from his knee injury, and Nebraska took advantage of the date with a weak FCS program to rest many of their starters in the second half. Speaking of no lingering after-effects, Huskers head coach Bo Pelini seems to be fine after leaving the Nebraska sideline last week suffering from disorientation and heartburn. Maybe someone will give him some heartburn now for scheduling a hapless patsy like Idaho State. Recap  (Nebraska 3-1, Next game: 9/29 vs Wisconsin)

Penn State 24 - Temple 13
Matt McGloin had a big day throwing the ball and the Nittany Lions defense was solid as well, as Penn State proved that they are not as bad as they will be soon, defeating Temple for the 23rd straight time. McGloin was 24 for 36 for 318 yards, with a TD and an interception, and he added two rushing touchdowns to his day’s work. Zach Zwinak and Michael Zordich rushed for 94 and 75 yards respectively, and Allen Robinson caught his 5th touchdown pass of the young season for the Lions. Penn State has bounced back after starting the season 0-2, and they’ll open B1G play in Champaign this week. Recap  (Penn State 2-2, Next game: 9/29 at Illinois)

Notre Dame 13 - Michigan 6
Notre Dame held a Big Ten opponent without a touchdown for the second week in a row, as they intercepted Denard Robinson four times in the first half, and limited the Wolverine quarterback to 138 yards passing for the game. The Irish led just 10-0 at the half though, and the outcome was in doubt until the last three minutes of the game when Notre Dame was able to run out the clock on offense with a 7-point lead. In fact, Michigan won the statistical battle, besting the Irish in total yards, first downs, rushing yards and time of possession, but they couldn’t overcome the turnover-fest authored by the erstwhile Heisman candidate under center for the Wolverines. Michigan now has the week off to think about it  Recap  (Michigan 2-2, Next game 10/6 at Purdue)

Minnesota 17 - Syracuse 10
Minn Syracuse2Backup quarterback Max Shortell showed well for the second week in a row in relief of the injured Marqueis Gray, and the Gopher defense forced four turnovers to shut down an Orange offense that came in averaging 29 points per game. Syracuse scored their only touchdown with under a minute to play, making the score appear closer than the game really was. Donnell Kirkwood scored two rushing TD’s and ran for 99 yards for Minnesota, and Shortell threw for 231 yards on 16 of 30 passing. It seems like more than four years since the Gophers started 4-0 (2008) and they have yet to prove much against quality opposition, but they are two wins away from bowl game eligibility, and that alone would be a huge boost for a beleaguered program.  Recap  (Minnesota 4-0, Next game: 9/29 at Iowa)

Louisiana Tech 52 - Illinois 24
Yes, the Bulldogs of LaTech are 3-0, but this home field humiliation of the Illini has to be the Big Ten’s embarrassing game of the week (in a tight competition with several qualified entries). LaTech ran out to a 21-7 lead in the 1st quarter, but Illinois closed to 21-17 at the half. That was as close as it got, because the Bulldogs toasted the Illini 24-0 in the 3rd quarter, as Illinois piled up six turnovers on the day, and their QB’s were sacked five times. Injured Illini quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase gave it a go on his sprained ankle, but gave way early to Reilly O’Toole, who went 19 for 25 passing for just 120 yards. Illinois managed 119 yards on the ground and a total of just 324 for the game. Recap  (Illinois 2-2, Next game: 9/29 vs Penn State)


Big Ten Statistics

Big Ten Standings - Results


Player of the Week
(This is my own selection, not the official POW named by the conference)

Venric Mark - RB - Northwestern
Mark scored three touchdowns and rushed for 117 yards. Big Ten officials picked MSU’s Le’Veon Bell as offensive POW, but Mark had a higher average per carry, and two more TD’s.

Honorable Mention

CMU Iowa WeismanMatt McGloin - QB - Penn State - 24 of 36 passing, 318 yards, 1 TD
Mark Weisman - RB - Iowa - 27 carries, 217 yards, 3 TD (pictured)
Le’Veon Bell - RB - Michigan State - 36 carries, 253 yards, 1 TD
Chris Borland - LB - Wisconsin - 12 tackles, 3.5 TFL, 2 sacks


Play of the Week
Three plays, actually....Central Michigan’s touchdown with 45 seconds remaining...their successful onside kick...and the ensuing game-winner as time expired, a 47-yard field goal that seemingly never got 20 feet off the ground, to upset Iowa 32-31 in Iowa City.  All three plays, in a quick one-minute YouTube here.


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