Spartan Nation's Big Ten Football Wrap-Up: Week 9

Michael Alan Smith


Northwestern (6-2, 2-2 Big Ten) @ Indiana (4-4, 0-4 Big Ten)


Northwestern 20Â Indiana 17

It was a show down of two potent Big Ten aerial assaults in Bloomington this weekend when Northwestern’s QB Dan Persa and Company came to town to square off with Hoosier QB Ben Chappell and his dangerous receiving corp. The Hoosiers were looking for their first Big Ten win of the season, while the Wildcats were playing for that ever-important bowl-eligibility purse. In the end the Wildcats hung on to win even though Persa was taken out of the game with a concussion in the fourth quarter. Northwestern’s back-up QB Evan Watkins entered the game and set up what would prove to be the winning margin  field goal. Ben Chappell did racked up some gaudy numbers but it simply wasn’t enough against these pesky Wildcats, who have now won six straight road games. Chappell threw for 308 yards on 30 for 54 passing with one TD and one interception. Indiana however, could get very little cooking on the ground once again, with a mere 65 rushing yards. Persa continued to perform admirably going for 212 yards on 18 of 28 passing with two TD’s and no interceptions. Indiana did manage to keep Persa’s quick burst in check most the afternoon, holding him to 19 yards on the ground, but Cat-back Mike Trumpy picked up the slack rambling for 110 of the Wildcats 155 rushing yards. The Hoosiers in a late push scored a TD on a Chappell to Duwyce Wilson 39 yard pass, to pull within 3 points with 44 seconds remaining in the contest. The Hoosiers attempted the onside kick but the ball failed to go 10 yards and the Wildcats escaped Bloomington with the W.

Scoring Summary


               FG          10:21    Mitch Ewald 23 Yd    NW0      IND 3

SECOND QUARTER             Â

               TD          13:46    Jeremy Ebert 11 Yd Pass From Dan Persa (Stefan Demos Kick)  NW7      IND 3

               TD          00:48    Ben Chappell 5 Yd Run (Mitch Ewald Kick)     NW 7     IND 10

               FG          00:00    Stefan Demos 23 Yd     NW10    IND 10


               TD          08:30    Jeremy Ebert 30 Yd Pass From Dan Persa (Stefan Demos Kick)  NW 17   IND 10

FOURTH QUARTER             Â

               FG          06:51    Stefan Demos 45 Yd     NW 20   IND 10

               TD          00:44    Duwyce Wilson 39 Yd Pass From Ben Chappell (Mitch Ewald Kick)     NW 20   IND 17




Purdue 10 (4-4, 2-2 Big Ten) @ Illinois 44 (5-3, 3-2 Big Ten)


Illinois 10Â Purdue 44

The fighting Illini proved yet again that they were not to be taken lightly and put up a 34 point shellacking win on the floundering, injury laden- Purdue Boilermakers, at home in Champaign this weekend.  Both teams entered the game at 2-2 in conference play, but by game’s end there was little doubt as to who was a superior squad this season. Boilermaker QB Sean Robinson, in his fill-in role for Robert Marve (out for season, knee) just couldn’t get anything going against the tough Illini defensive-squad, finishing the day with only 52 yards on 7 of 20 passing, and one TD. After only picking up 64 yards in the entire first half, Purdue was rather fortunate to only be down 17-0. But, when the stars aligned in the third quarter for the Illini, this one was quickly put away as they rattled off three straight TD’s while the defense pitched a shut-out, putting the game clearly out of reach at 37-0 by the start of the fourth quarter. The only Boilermaker points came in the final quarter of play when Carson Wiggs booted a 35 yard field goal with 10:50 to go; that was followed shortly after by Gary Bush’s 7 yard TD catch from Sean Robinson with 5:44 on the clock. Illini Freshman QB, Nathan Scheelhaase, who finished the day with an efficient  16 of 20 passing for 195 yards and four TD’s, continued nicely along the road of progress. A Scheelhaase to Chris James 15 yard TD pass ended all scores in the game, capping off a brutal day for the Boilers in Champaign culminating to a 44-10 final.

Scoring Summary


               TD          06:40    A.J. Jenkins 17 Yd Pass From Nathan Scheelhaase (Derek Dimke Kick)     PUR0     ILL7

               TD          00:20    Mikel Leshoure 1 Yd Run (Derek Dimke Kick)      PUR0     ILL14

SECOND QUARTER              PUR        ILL

               FG          00:00    Derek Dimke 18 Yd      PUR0     ILL17


               TD          08:43    Mikel Leshoure 20 Yd Pass From Nathan Scheelhaase (Derek Dimke Kick)  PUR0     ILL24

               TD          07:00    Mikel Leshoure 1 Yd Run (Derek Dimke Kick)    PUR0     ILL31

               TD          05:14    Darius Millines 10 Yd Pass From Nathan Scheelhaase (Two-Point Conversion Failed)  PUR0     ILL37

FOURTH QUARTER              PUR        ILL

               FG          10:50    Carson Wiggs 35 Yd            PUR3     ILL37

               TD          05:44    Gary Bush 7 Yd Pass From Sean Robinson (Carson Wiggs Kick)  PUR10   ILL37

               TD          01:36    Chris James 15 Yd Pass From Nathan Scheelhaase (Derek Dimke Kick)    PUR10   ILL44




(11) Ohio St 52 (8-1, 4-1 Big Ten) @ Minnesota 10 (1-8, 0-5 Big Ten)


Ohio St 52Â Minnesota 10

Anytime Jim Tressel and the Buckeye's come to town you, should definitely plan on bringing your A-game…but it's hard to bring your A-game I suppose… when you can't even bring an actual Head Coach to the contest. Interim Minnesota Head Coach Jeff Horton who is temporarily filling the vacated position, after Tim Brewster’s firing, witnessed his 18th straight defeat as a football teams head man. Two losses in a row this season as the Minnesota fill-in guy, plus his 16 straight L’s that date back to his UNLV coaching days in the mid to late ‘90’s. Fate has obviously not been kind to Horton as a head guy, and getting a visit from Tressel when your team’s already down, probably isn’t going to end well, unless you’re a Buckeye of course. To the Gophers credit, the score was 7-7 at 7:44 in the first quarter when Minnesota’s DeLeon Eskridge ran for a seven yard TD. But, that score was immediately followed by an epic Buckeye offensive onslaught-- and a defensive effort that allowed but one lone Gopher field goal, an Eric Ellestad 33 yard boot, early in the third quarter-- and actually put up some points of its own in the process. With 10:16 to go in the contest John Simon returned a fumble 30 yards for the TD which capped off the 42 point drubbing. It was actually the Buckeye’s special teams in the third quarter that blocked a Minnesota punt in the endzone for the first Gopher-gaffe-turned-Buckeye-score. As Big Ten Conference thumpings go, this one was among the ugliest of the season. The Buckeyes racked-up 507 yards offensively, more than doubling Minnesota’s output for the day. Buckeye QB Terrelle Pryor had a very efficient day passing going 18 for 22 and 222 yards including two TD’s, but did throw an interception. Minnesota QB Adam Weber did not fair nearly so well against the Ohio State defense, passing for 9 of 20 and 162 yards and no TD’s and one interception.

 The Gophers are down, leadership is greatly lacking on the field and on the side-lines, and the fans are frustrated as they sit in their still-new TCF Bank Stadium for as long as they can emotionally endure. The Gopher season-ticket holders may get a small and much needed reprieve from the spectacle this coming weekend when the Gophers leave town and head to East Lansing… but the team and Interim Head Coach Jeff Horton, likely won’t be so lucky.

Scoring Summary


               TD          09:25    Terrelle Pryor 1 Yd Run (Devin Barclay Kick) OSU7     MINN0

               TD          07:44    DeLeon Eskridge 7 Yd Run (Eric Ellestad Kick)       OSU7     MINN7

               TD          00:22    Brandon Saine 3 Yd Pass From Terrelle Pryor (Devin Barclay Kick)       OSU14   MINN7

SECOND QUARTER             Â

               FG          08:24    Devin Barclay 23 Yd     OSU17   MINN7

               TD          01:43    Dan Herron 10 Yd Run (Devin Barclay Kick)   OSU24   MINN7

               TD          00:24    DeVier Posey 38 Yd Pass From Terrelle Pryor (Devin Barclay Kick)    OSU31   MINN7


               FG          11:12    Eric Ellestad 33 Yd       OSU31   MINN10

               TD          04:10    Zach Domicone Recovered Blocked Punt In End Zone (Devin Barclay Kick)     OSU38   MINN10

FOURTH QUARTER             Â

               TD          11:17    Jordan Hall 16 Yd Run (Devin Barclay Kick)    OSU45   MINN10

               TD          10:16    John Simon 30 Yd Fumble Return (Devin Barclay Kick)        OSU52   MINN10



Michigan 31 (5-3, 1-3 Big Ten) @ Penn St 41 (5-3, 2-2 Big Ten)


Penn St 41Â Michigan 31

This was a game that Michigan needed to win. It was a game that they were supposed to win. Historically speaking, Happy Valley is a notoriously difficult place for an opponent to pick up a notch in win column. So when the Penn State Nittany Lions are having a down year, plagued by inexperience and youth, you had better capitalize and get your licks in while you can. Wolverines entered the game absolutely famished for a Big Ten win over a team not named the Hoosiers, after having gone 4-15 in Big Ten play over the two and half season tenure of their head man Rich Rodriguez. Coming off a bye week with considerable time to prepare for the coup, Michigan was expected to come out swinging and tough out the win. Near the end of the fourth quarter however, the expression on Rodriguez’s face said everything. Michigan’s woeful defense had made Penn State’s third string former walk-on QB, Matt McGloin, and their grossly inconsistent RB, Evan Royster, both, appear more like All-American selections.  McGloin who is filling in for the injured Rob Bolden, finished the day with 250 yards on 17 of 28 passing and one TD, while Royster racked up 150 rushing yards and two TD’s. Wolverine QB Denard Robinson gave a valiant effort though, as the rest of the Wolverine roster seemingly did not show. Robinson went 11 of 23 passing for 190 yards and one TD and led all rushers with 191 yards and three TD’s. Aside from a Seth Broekhuizen field goal in the second quarter of play, Denard accounted for all the Wolverine’s points in one way or another. In the third quarter Denard hooked-up with Kevin Koger on a 60 yard pass for a score giving Michigan a glimmer of hope as it brought the score to a somewhat surmountable, 31-17 Nittany Lion lead. But JoePa’s squad was the next to score on a five yard TD run by Michael Zordich. Robinson still had some fight left in him though, as he rattled off two straight rushing TD’s to bring the difference within seven, at 38-31 with 9:25 left in the contest. Collin Wagner hit a 42 yard field goal with 5:43 to go, to up the led to two scores. It seemed as though Denard would get another shot on offense as Penn State lined up for a field goal on fourth down at Michigan’s 22-yard line with 3:44 left in the contest. Nittany kicker Collin Wagner instead tucked the ball and dashed left reaching the first down marker 7 yards away and in-so-doing securing a new set of downs for Penn State. From there the Nittany lions simply bled the clock, reaching the Michigan two-yard line before taking a knee in the victory formation-- and in-turn--ratcheting up once again, the temperature of Rich Rodriguez’s Ann Arbor coaching seat. After starting the season at 5-0 the Wolverines have lost three straight games, and once again find themselves near the basement of the Big Ten standings at 1-3 in Conference (5-3 overall). Rich Rodriguez is now 4-16 in Big Ten play in his Michigan coaching career, and has yet to play conference powerhouses Wisconsin and Ohio State this season. Next up for the Wolverines however, is the very formidable and much improved Fighting Illini, in the Big House. The Nittany Lions on the other hand, have improved to 2-2 in the Big Ten.

Scoring Summary


               TD          07:26    Evan Royster 4 Yd Run (Collin Wagner Kick)  UM0      PS7

               TD          04:01    Denard Robinson 32 Yd Run (Seth Broekhuizen Kick) UM7      PS7

               TD          01:24    Evan Royster 1 Yd Run (Collin Wagner Kick)  UM7      PS14

SECOND QUARTER              MICH     PSU

               FG          08:43    Seth Broekhuizen 37 Yd    UM10    PS14

               TD          03:27    Matthew McGloin 1 Yd Run (Collin Wagner Kick)         UM10    PS21

               TD          01:02    Graham Zug 20 Yd Pass From Matthew McGloin (Collin Wagner Kick)     UM10    PS28


               FG          09:57    Collin Wagner 32 Yd        UM10    PS31

               TD          07:58    Kevin Koger 60 Yd Pass From Denard Robinson (Seth Broekhuizen Kick)     UM17    PS31

               TD          03:59    Michael Zordich 5 Yd Run (Collin Wagner Kick)            UM17    PS38

               TD          01:36    Denard Robinson 1 Yd Run (Seth Broekhuizen Kick)    UM24    PS38

FOURTH QUARTER              MICH     PSU

               TD          09:25    Denard Robinson 4 Yd Run (Seth Broekhuizen Kick)    UM31    PS38

               FG          05:43    Collin Wagner 42 Yd          UM31    PS41