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Monday, October 22, 2007

10/22/07 - Weekend Recaps

Penn State 36 Indiana 31
Penn State opened up a 29-17 lead in the 4th quarter, then had to hold on as Indiana's valiant attempt at a comeback fell just short. The Nittany Lions defensive line pestered Hoosier QB Kellen Lewis all afternoon sacking him six times in the game. Indiana WR James Hardy had a huge game in the loss, catching 14 balls for 142 yards and 2 touchdowns. Penn State QB Anthony Morelli finished the day 22 of 32 with 195 yards and 2 first half TDs, but the key to this game was turnovers. The Nittany Lions forced four Indiana fumbles which helped PSU keep the Hoosiers arms length away for most of the game. With Ohio State next week, this was a huge win for the Lions, and they can be happy to just get out of Bloomington with the win.
Player of the Game: Indiana WR James Hardy

Purdue 31 Iowa 6
Coming into this game, these teams looked headed in opposite directions. Iowa was coming off an impressive home win over a ranked Illinois team, and after a 5-0 start, Purdue had been blown out in two straight games against the Big Ten's top two teams. Well that didn't last long as Dorien Bryant and the Purdue passing game got back on track in this game, and the Iowa offense looked as bad as it has at any point this season. Purdue QB Curtis Painter threw for 315 yards on 29 of 48 passing with 3 touchdowns. Bryant caught 9 of those passes for 167 yards and 2 scores. The Boilermakers are now bowl eligible and will try to keep things rolling when they host Northwestern next week. Iowa will now have to win 3 of their last 4 just to finish the season .500.
Player of the Game: Purdue WR Dorien Bryant

North Dakota St 27 Minnesota 21
Could things have possibly gone any worse for Minnesota coach Tim Brewster in his first year? After giving away a win at Northwestern last week, the Gophers came back to the Dome only to find it filled mostly with ND State Bison fans. On top of that, the Minnesota defense was absolutely dominated by Division 1-AA North Dakota State. The Bison out gained the Gophers 585 yards to 307, while racking up 394 yards on the ground. Bison RB Tyler Roehl rushed the ball 22 times for 263 yards and a touchdown. Minnesota is looking at a winless Big Ten season, unless their defense can show any ability to hold anybody in check, something it hasn't done all year. Things will get even uglier next week when the Gophers travel to Ann Arbor.
Player of the Game: ND State RB Tyler Roehl

Wisconsin 44 Northern Illinois 3
Wisconsin needed an easy dominate win after back-to-back road losses to Illinois and Penn State. The Badgers pounded the ball all afternoon against NIU, finishing with 331 yards rushing. RB P.J. Hill led the way with 184 yards on 21 carries and 2 touchdowns. The Wisconsin defense also completely shut down what is a very bad Northern Illinois team, holding the Huskies to just 6 first downs and 13 rushing yards. This blowout got the Badgers to six wins, but things will get considerably tougher as they continue Big Ten play with upcoming games against Indiana, Ohio State and Michigan.
Player of the Game: Wisconsin RB P.J. Hill

Ohio State 24 Michigan State 17
Ohio State dominated the Spartans for much of the game, but a couple of mistakes in the 2nd half gave MSU a chance late in the game. Michigan State scored 14 points off OSU turnovers to give the Buckeyes a bit of a scare, but in reality this game wasn't as close as the final score would suggest. The Spartans finished the game with only 185 yards of total offense and nine first downs as the Buckeye defense continued to dominate. RB "Beanie" Wells led the way for Ohio State with 221 yards on 31 carries and a touchdown. QB Todd Boeckman looked solid through the first half, but did throw one interception in the 3rd quarter that gave the Spartans life. Boeckman finished the day 15 of 23 for 193 yards with 2 TDs and 1 INT. The Buckeyes now travel to Penn State for their biggest test to date.
Player of the Game: Ohio State RB Chris "Beanie" Wells

Michigan 27 Illinois 17
Michigan had to battle back on the road to beat Illinois without RB Mike Hart and with a banged up Chad Henne at quarterback. Hart was on the sideline, but did not dress for the game due to an ankle injury. The Illini jumped out to an early 14-3 lead in the first half, but could not hold off the Wolverines in the 2nd half. Henne was knocked out of the game, but came back to guide Michigan to a come from behind victory. He finished the day 18 of 26 for 201 yards and 2 touchdowns. WR Mario Manningham also had a big day catching 9 passes for 109 yards and 2 scores. The Wolverines showed a lot of heart on the road in a tough situation, but behind the leadership of Chad Henne and the other seniors pulled out the win to stay undefeated in conference play. Up next for Michigan is what should be an easy win over Minnesota before the final stretch of Michigan State, Wisconsin and Ohio State.
Player of the Game: Michigan QB Chad Henne

Northwestern 26 Eastern Michigan 14
In a rare Friday night Big Ten game, Northwestern and Eastern Michigan did battle in an empty Ford Field in Detroit. This was a must win game for the Wildcats to keep their bowl hopes alive, and although it wasn't pretty, NU did what they had to do to win this ball game. QB C.J. Bacher led the offense again with 470 yards on 41 of 58 passing and throwing for 4 touchdowns. EMU did a nice job of staying close with their backup quarterback playing this game, but eventually the 4 turnovers did them in. Northwestern is now just one win away from reaching six and becoming bowl eligible, but the Wildcats will certainly have to play better in their last four games.
Player of the Game: Northwestern QB C.J. Bacher