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Iowa Game Prediction

While 7-3 though ten games is not what Michigan envisioned when the season started, how they got there has been equally as disappointing. They showed marginal improvement last week against an injury riddled Northwestern team, however this week in Iowa City will be a much stiffer challenge.

With the shot of playing for a B1G championship gone, a chance at 8 or 9 regular season wins is still on the table.

Iowa’s defense won’t be confused with‎ MSU’s anytime soon, but their front is stout and with Michigan’s struggles along the interior of the offensive line, expecting to rush for near 4 yards a carry two weeks in a row is unlikely.

‎Devin Gardner, from the outside looking in, had a somewhat efficient game last week. But if Northwestern’s defense didn’t have lobster claws for arms they would have picked him off 5-6 times. I get that he’s running for his life nearly every play, but at some point throwing the ball out of bounds needs to cross his mind if his first or second target are covered.

Michigan will try to pound the ball, if for no other reason of Gardner’s preservation. Expect Iowa to use the blueprint of the previous three games and load the box and largely be successful. Michigan will make enough plays to stay in the game.

However both of Iowa’s lines will prove too much for Michigan to overcome, and Iowa will make just enough plays to win.

Iowa 23  Michigan 17

B1G Ten Players of the Week

Following Big Ten football games on Nov. 16, the offensive, defensive and special teams players of the week and freshman of the week in the Big Ten were announced this morning. Below are this week’s honorees:

Offensive Player of the Week

Carlos Hyde, Ohio State

Sr., RB, Naples, Fla./Naples

•           Rushed for a career-high 246 yards, the fourth-most in Ohio State history, and scored five total touchdowns in the Buckeyes’ road victory over Illinois, becoming the first Big Ten player since 2010 to score five times in a game

•           Averaged 10.3 yards per carry and rushed for four touchdowns, including runs of one, eight, 51 and 55 yards

•           Also had an 18-yard touchdown reception and totaled 272 all-purpose yards in the game

•           Records the third Offensive Player of the Week award of his career and second this season

•           Last Ohio State Offensive Player of the Week: Braxton Miller (Oct. 28, 2013)

Defensive Player of the Week

Ryan Shazier, Ohio State

Jr., LB, Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Plantation

•           Recorded a career-high 16 tackles that included 1.5 sacks and 3.5 tackles for loss in the Buckeyes’ road win at Illinois

•           Forced a fumble on a third-quarter sack, which led to an Illinois safety to give the Buckeyes a 37-21 advantage

•           Leads the conference and ranks among the top 15 in the nation with 1.45 tackles per loss a contest

•           Claims his fourth career Defensive Player of the Week honor and second this season

•           Last Ohio State Defensive Player of the Week: Ryan Shazier (Sept. 16, 2013)

Special Teams Player of the Week

Brendan Gibbons, Michigan

Sr., K, West Palm Beach, Fla./Cardinal Newman

•           Was perfect on his kicking attempts in a road win against Northwestern, including a 44-yarder as time expired to force overtime

•           Also converted on attempts from 25, 28 and 29 yards to match his career best of four field goals in a game

•           Made two fourth-quarter field goals and added another in the second overtime

•           Claims his second career Special Teams Player of the Week honor

•           Last Michigan Special Teams Player of the Week: Brendan Gibbons (Oct. 22, 2012)

Freshman of the Week

Corey Clement, Wisconsin   

RB, Glassboro, N.J./Glassboro

•           Averaged nearly 10 yards per carry, finishing with 108 yards on 11 totes, and scored two touchdowns in Wisconsin’s win over Indiana

•           Rushed for more than 100 yards for the third time this season and tied a career high with two scores

•           Was one of three Badgers to rush for more than 100 yards in the game as they ran for 554 yards, which ranks eighth in Big Ten single-game history

•           Wins his second Freshman of the Week award

•           Last Wisconsin Freshman of the Week: Corey Clement (Sept. 9, 2013)

Nebraska Game Prediction

Anyone not still stinging from last week’s brutal beat down by the Spartans in East Lansing must have been on a coma this week. DGreenEvery fear fans had, other than turning the ball over, was experienced time and time again. We’ve known for several weeks that Michigan had issues on the interior of its offensive line and we all hoped that they would gel. Well the doors got blown off t hat one last week.

All is not lost however, Wolverine faithful. Nobody will argue against the fact that MSU has one of the very best, elite defenses in the nation. And also the toughest one Michigan has faced or will face, the duration of the season. What better to come to town after getting your ass kicked? A team that this year is softer than Kleenex. Who is also missing their best offensive player in QB Taylor Martinez and others on both sides of the ball. Nobody confused them with a tough team when they weren’t banged up all over the place, but even more so now.

Now that hopes of a B1G Championship game appearance are doused and on life support at best, it’s time to get other players some snaps. Shane Morris, Derrick Green, DeVeon Smith, Ben Braden, Taco Charlton, and several others need reps. All are talented, and many have as good or more potential than those starting in front of them. Fitz Toussaint has done some very good things for U of M, but few will stand up to say they don’t want others to get some snaps. Nows is the time to see what you’ve got, both for the last 4+ games of the season, and beyond.

We will find out whether Michigan has the fortitude to bounce back, and I think they will. In fact in a big way.

Michigan 44, Nebraska 21

Nebraska Preview

What to watch on offense

Bo Pelini is in his 7th year at Nebraska and the natives are growing restless. Despite bringing a level of stability to the Huskers, Pelini has lost at least 4 games in each of his 6 seasons at the helm. Off Coor. Tim Beck enters his 3rd year after serving as the RB coach at Nebraska the period 3 years. Thanks to the presence of Taylor Martinez, Nebraska has mainly employed pistol based spread attacBPelini - ES k offensively. Injuries to Martinez have allowed the Huskers to experiment with pro-style schemes and plays that were previously unavailable.

Taylor Martinez has been the face of the Nebraska offense for going on 4 seasons. By virtue of sheer number of starts Martinez was already Nebraska’s career leader in passing yards heading into the season. Martinez has experienced an injury plagued season, missing 4 of the team’s 9 games so far. Redshirt freshmen Tommy Armstrong has done an admirable job filling in, going 4-0 as a starter but does have more interceptions than TDs.

Ameer Abdullah rushed for 1,100 yards a year ago and returns to lead a rushing attacked that is ranked in the top 15 in the country. The Huskers lost longtime stud Rex Burkhead but haven’t lost a beat with Abdullah and the powerful Imani Cross. At 6’1 225 cross brings an added power dimension to an offense that is built on moving the pile and between the tackle runs.

The Huskers return their top two receivers in Kenny Bell and Quincy Enuwa, both of whom are now upperclassmen. Bell led the team in receptions, yards, and TDs a year ago though Enunwa has emerged as the go to WR so far this season. Redshirt freshmen Jordan Westerkamp is average 13yds per reception this season, though he only has 14 catches on the year.

Nebraska has made its reputation based on the play of its offensive line and takes great pride in the unit. The Huskers lose LG Seung Hoon Choi and center Justin Jackson but return as many as 8 players with game experience. Tackle Jeremiah Sirles was 2nd time All-Big 10 a year ago and returns to lead a unit that is while plagued with injuries, has been very effective so far this season.

Best Offensive Player

Ameer Abdullah- Abdullah is the player that makes the Husker offense go. While not the biggest player at 5’9 190, Abdullah is adept at finding holes and has surprising inside running power to go along with his outside and break away speed. Abdullah has already gone over the 1,000yd mark and is on pace to finish with well over 1,500yds.

Continue reading “Nebraska Preview”

Week 11 B1G Ten Picks

  Lance Callihan Sean O’Connell Ryan Callihan Matt Brinkman Clint Derringer Jon Jennings Drew Montag Todd Male Luke D’Mello Joseph Boyd
PSU/MINN MIN PSU PSU MIN MIN MIN MIN PSU PSU PSU
IOW/PUR IOW IOW IOW IOW IOW IOW IOW IOW IOW IOW
ILL/IND IND IND IND ILL IND IND IND IND IND IND
NEB/MICH MICH MICH MICH MICH MICH MICH MICH MICH MICH MICH
BYU/WIS Wisconsin Wisconsin Wisconsin Wisconsin Wisconsin Wisconsin Wisconsin Wisconsin Wisconsin Wisconsin
OREG/STAN Oregon Oregon Oregon Oregon Oregon Oregon Oregon STAN Oregon Oregon
OKL/BAY Baylor Baylor Baylor Oklahoma Baylor Baylor Baylor Baylor Baylor Oklahoma
LSU/ALAB Alabama Alabama Alabama Alabama Alabama Alabama Alabama Alabama Alabama Alabama
Last Week 5-3 5-3 5-3 5-3 4-4 6-2 7-1 5-3 5-3 5-3
Overall 79-18 78-19 77-20 75-22 74-23 73-24 73-24 68-29 68-29 67-30