Monday, October 5, 2015

Week 5 PASS/FAIL Reports: Big 10

BIG 10

PASS: Indiana, Purdue, Northwestern, Iowa, Michigan, Illinois

Despite losing RB Jordan Howard to an ankle injury, Indiana still led Ohio State at the half, and forced the Buckeyes to play on their heels all day long. Despite losing 34-27, Indiana receives a PASS for a heroic effort on the day, even after losing Howard and QB Nate Sudfeld.

Purdue also lost, but gets a PASS on effort alone as they refused to go away, as Markell Jones rushed for 157 yards in the losing effort.

Northwestern shut out Minnesota for the first time since 1959 in a 27-0 win. The Wildcat defense led the day once again, and Clayton Thorson rushed for 2 TDs in the win. Northwestern is 5-0 for the first time since 2012.

Iowa survived a grinding nail biter to hang onto a 10-6 win over Wisconsin, and capitalized on 3 crucial Badger turnovers, including a fumble recovery at the 1 yard line to prevent Wisconsin from pulling ahead late. It’s the first Iowa win over Wisconsin since 2009, and Kirk Ferentz got his 120th career win.

Michigan earned their 2nd straight shutout in a 28-0 win over Maryland. Drake Johnson rushed for one score and caught another as the Wolverines blew the game open in the 3rd quarter during a 15-0 run.

Illinois got 2 4th quarter TD passes from We Lunt to knock off Nebraska at home 14-13, giving Bill Cubit his 1st Big 10 win.

FAIL: Ohio State, Michigan State, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Maryland, Penn State, Nebraska

Zeke Elliott ran for 274 yards and 3 TDs, and it’s a good thing he did, as the Buckeyes were forced to score 28 points in the 2nd half, and were also forced to deflect a desperation pass in the end zone as the clock expired to hold off Indiana. Ohio State was supposed to be far better than this in 2015.

Michigan State jumped to a 21-0 lead over Purdue, and then were held to a FG in the 2nd half and had to fend off a very bad Purdue team to hang on to a 24-21 win. The Spartans, like the Buckeyes, are not living up to expectations despite being unbeaten.

Minnesota suffered through another offensively inept performance against Northwestern, rolling up a paltry 183 total yards of offense and it looks like they will be a non-factor in the Big 10 race.

Wisconsin now on the outside looking in in the conference race, as Joel Stave tossed two picks and fumbled at the Iowa 1 yard line in a 10-6 loss. The root cause of the loss was an offense that was absolutely abysmal throughout, and the Badgers absolutely need to go out and recruit a QB in the worst way.

Maryland was held to just 105 total yards on the day in a 28-0 loss to Michigan, and the locals are grumbling, as the fire Randy Edsall/Hire Chip Kelly calls are starting to come in. Remember that Maryland nearly hired Mike Leach before settling on Edsell.

Penn State needed 3 turnovers from Army, and Christian Hackenburg underperformed once again with just 156 yards passing, and the Nittany Lions survived an uninspired effort to win 20-14 at home.

Tommy Armstrong completed just 10/31 passes on the day, and Nebraska is off to their worst start (2-3) in 60 years under Mike Riley, who is already receiving heat in year one as head coach.

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