Archive for October, 2012

2012 NCAA Football – Week 9

Posted on October 29, 2012. Filed under: Football, NCAA Sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Upset week… or just good football?

October 28, 2012

Week 9 action around the Big Ten -let’s recount all that happens…

INDIANA 31, ILLINOIS 17
This was out NCAA Game of the Week… For our game summary, click here.

MINNESOTA 44, PURDUE 28
Minnesota owned the Boilermakers in the game, scoring 44 straight points from the middle of the first quarter to the middle of the third quarter. Oh, and this was also the Gopher’s first Big Ten win this year.

MICHIGAN STATE 16, WISCONSIN 13 (OT)
With the loss, Wisconsin’s road to the Leaders division spot in the Big Ten title game goes through Indiana, who is the only team who can prevent the Badgers from going to Indianapolis.

NEBRASKA 23, MICHIGAN 9
Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson was knocked out with a second quarter elbow injury, and Nebraska’s defense took over from there, holding the Wolverines to a season-low 188 total yards, intercepting backup quarterback Russell Bellomy three times and keeping Michigan out of the end zone for the second consecutive week. Nebraska has defeated its two main rivals for the Legends crown in back-to-back weeks with victories over Northwestern and Michigan and now is sitting pretty in first place in their division. During the game, Nebraska celebrated the 50th anniversary of the beginning of its NCAA-record sellout streak, currently at 323 games in a row and counting.

NORTHWESTERN 28, IOWA 17
Northwestern ran for 349 rushing yards on Iowa and was in control throughout the entire game. Iowa looks average and their record would agree as they are 4-4 overall and 2-2 in the Big Ten.

OHIO STATE 35, PENN STATE 23
This game was coined the “IneligiBowl” which went in favor of Ohio State who remains one of six unbeaten teams. Ohio State isn’t allowed to win many things, but Braxton Miller can still win the Heisman and he is definitely one of the favorites. The sophomore rushed for 134 yards and scored three total touchdowns. Penn State quarterback Matt McGloin, who leads the Big Ten in passing, threw for a career-high 327 yards and two touchdowns but threw a costly third-quarter interception that was returned for a touchdown. With the win, Ohio State will most likely now win the Leader Division but will be removed from the Big Ten title game like a bad tattoo.

NOTE: Ohio State has now won three consecutive games at Beaver Stadium for the first time in the history of this rivalry.

In additional games during week 9, four Top Ten teams fell this week and five ranked teams suffered their first losses of the season. Meanwhile, Collin Klein and Manti T’eo boosted their Heisman chances while Alabama, Oregon, Kansas State and Notre Dame continued to make their case for a shot in the national title game.   Here are all highlights from a wild week in college football.

#1 ALABAMA 38, #13 MISSISSIPPI STATE 7
If Alabama was already looking ahead to next week’s matchup with LSU, you wouldn’t know it from their play. The Crimson Tide rolled up 38 unanswered points before finally surrendering a touchdown in the game’s final minutes. Once again, the Alabama defense was dominant, holding the Bulldogs to just 256 total yards, forcing three turnovers and holding LaDarius Perkins, the SEC’s leading rusher, to just 38 yards on the ground. Crimson Tide quarterback A.J. McCarron, who threw for 208 yards and two touchdowns, has now gone eight straight weeks without throwing an interception.

#2 OREGON 70, COLORADO 14
Colorado came into the game ranked next-to-last in scoring defense, and that stat isn’t likely to improve after the Ducks rolled up a season-high 70 points and 617 yards. Oregon led 56-0 at halftime, and most of the Ducks starters were pulled midway through the second quarter. Oregon running back Kenjon Barner rushed for 104 yards and two touchdowns while DeAnthony Thomas added a 73-yard punt return touchdown to go along with 97 rushing yards and a score. Colorado has given up at least 50 points in each of the last three weeks.

#12 GEORGIA 17, #3 FLORIDA 9 – UPSET!!!!
Georgia’s defense had given up 300+ yards in every game and at least 20 in all but one this season. But they picked a great week to turn things around have their best game of the season, holding the Gators to just 266 yards and forcing six turnovers. Freshman running back Todd Gurley ran for 118 yards and a touchdown to provide most of Georgia’s offense against a Florida defense that had another solid game (held the Bulldogs to just 273 yards and intercepted quarterback Aaron Murray three times) but was unable to overcome the Gators’ offensive miscues. This is just the fifth time Georgia has won in their last 23 games against the Gators.

#4 KANSAS STATE 55, #15 TEXAS TECH 24
Collin Klein threw for two touchdowns and ran for two more to keep himself squarely in the Heisman mix and the Wildcats in the national title hunt. The Wildcats got off to a slow start (just 19 yards on their first three drives) against a Texas Tech defense that came into the game ranked seventh in the nation, but exploded to score on eight straight possessions. Red Raider quarterback Seth Doege threw 15 touchdown passes in his previous two games, but was held in check this week, throwing for 331 yards and two touchdowns, but also a pick-six interception. This is Kansas State’s first 8-0 start since 1999.

#5 NOTRE DAME 30, #8 OKLAHOMA 13
Are the Irish forreal? Notre Dame running backs Cierre Wood and Theo Riddick each ran for 74 yards and a touchdown as the Fighting Irish became just the second ranked team to beat a Bob Stoops-coached team in Norman. And while Notre Dame had decent success running the ball, the Fighting Irish defense made sure Oklahoma couldn’t do the same, holding the Sooners to just 15 yards on 24 carries. Linebacker Manti T’eo continued his stellar season with 11 tackles (two for loss), one sack and an interception. After missing last week’s game with a concussion, Fighting Irish quarterback Everett Golson threw for 177 yards and rushed for the go-ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter. Notre Dame is the only team in the nation with four wins over Top 25 teams. This was just the second time in their last 35 games that the Sooners were held to 17 or fewer points.

#6 LOUISIANA STATE UNIVERSITY BYE LSU had a very well-timed bye to prepare for next week’s big showdown with #1 Alabama. R&R weekend….

WASHINGTON 20, #7 OREGON STATE 17 – UPSET
Oregon State quarterback Sean Mannion’s return from an early-season knee injury didn’t go well, as the sophomore threw a career-high four interceptions before being pulled midway through the fourth quarter in favor of backup Cody Vaz. The Beavers outgained Washington 427-293, but Mannion’s interceptions twice ended drives in Washington territory and set up the Huskies’ go-ahead touchdown. Washington is one of the most difficult teams in the country to figure out—they have now beaten two Top Ten opponents, but hey have also lost three games by 30 or more points.

ARIZONA 39, #10 SOUTHERN CAL 36 – UPSET
Arizona quarterback Matt Scott accounted for 469 total yards and four touchdowns, leading the Wildcats back from a 15-point deficit late in the third quarter to upset the Trojans. USC led 28-13 with four minutes left in the third quarter before Arizona rallied to score 26 unanswered points in the next 14 minutes. USC receiver Marqise Lee caught 16 passes for a PAC-12 record 345 yards and two touchdowns in the loss. Arizona’s win snaps a four-game losing streak to the Trojans.

#11 FLORIDA STATE 48, DUKE 7
Despite losing star running back Chris Thompson with a knee injury last week, Florida State’s offense showed little sign of slowing down, rolling up 560 yards and 48 points. Seminoles quarterback E.J. Manuel threw for 282 yards and two touchdowns while Thompson’s replacement, sophomore Devonta Freeman rushed for 104 yards and two scores. Florida State’s defense and special teams were equally impressive in the win, holding the ACC’s second-best passing attack to just 129 passing yards, forcing four turnovers and getting a 75-yard punt return touchdown. The Seminoles are now 18-0 all-time versus Duke.

#14 CLEMSON 42, WAKE FOREST 13
Clemson quarterback Tajh Boyd threw for a school-record 428 yards and five touchdowns, including one to receiver Sammy Watkins, who caught eight passes for a school-record 202 yards. After managing just 16 yards on its first two drives, the Tigers’ offense erupted to find the end zone on its next five possessions, jumping out to a 35-0 lead in the second quarter. The Tigers have now won four in a row in this series.

#16 LOUISVILLE 34, CINCINNATI 31 (OT)
Louisville outgained the Bearcats 524-353 but needed a field goal and an interception in overtime to keep its undefeated season alive. Cardinals quarterback Teddy Bridgewater threw for 416 and two touchdowns, twice rallying Louisville from 10-point deficits. Cincinnati quarterback Munchie Legeaux threw three interceptions, including one that ended the Bearcats’ only possession in overtime. On Louisville’s field goal attempt in overtime, the snap was fumbled. But Cincinnati had called timeout to ice the kicker just before the snap, giving Louisville’s John Wallace another attempt at the 30-yarder that he made for the win.  The win snaps a four-game losing streak for the Cardinals in this series.

#17 SOUTH CAROLINA 38, TENNESSEE 35
South Carolina held off a late Volunteers rally to secure the win, but the Gamecocks may have bigger concerns this week as star running back Marcus Lattimore had to be carted off the field after suffering a gruesome knee injury. Even though coach Steve Spurrier declined on Sunday to discuss specifics of his horrific injury suffered in the second quarter of Saturday’s 38-35 victory over Tennessee, he confirmed the junior running back had a dislocated knee, the same injury incurred by freshman defensive back T.J. Gurley earlier this season.

“The knee sort of pops out of place, a dislocation,” Spurrier said. “They got it back in place pretty quickly, though. Dr. (Jeffrey) Guy said it was back in quickly.”

But Spurrier added it “remains to be seen” how long Lattimore’s rehab from his second major knee injury will take, and didn’t rule out the possibility of his recovery extending into 2014.

“Dr. Guy said there could be a chance (of a 2013 return), but there could be a chance that it could be two years down the road,” Spurrier said. “It could be a full year of recovery. We’ll have to wait and see, that’s what he said. We’ll take it one day at a time and allow the doctors and Marcus and a lot of prayers to do their work.”

Since Lattimore didn’t redshirt as a freshman in 2010, he has two years of eligibility left to play his final season, or he could opt for the NFL.

“It’s going to take a while, obviously, to recover and rehab this,” Spurrier said. “But Marcus has a good attitude today. We saw him and talked with him. He knows what the road ahead is. We’re all hoping and praying he will be back.”

South Carolina rolled up 510 yards of offense en route to their highest scoring game since late September. Quarterback Connor Shaw threw for 356 yards and tallied four total touchdowns for the win.

In the short term, the ball-carrying responsibilities fall to Kenny Miles (149 yards) and Mike Davis (157), while the plans to redshirt Brandon Wilds could be scrapped. Miles, a fifth-year senior, ascends to the No. 1 running back slot for the Arkansas game on Nov. 10 at Williams-Brice Stadium.  The Gamecocks will have to dig deep without Lattimore moving forward.

KENT STATE 35, #18 RUTGERS 23 – UPSET
Rutgers quarterback Gary Nova threw six interceptions that set up 21 Kent State points, ending the Scarlet Knights hopes for an undefeated season. Rutgers came into the game ranked third in the nation in rush defense, but allowed the Golden Flashes to roll up 224 yards on the ground. This is Kent State’s first-ever win over a ranked team (0-22 prior to this weekend) and the victory gives the Golden Flashes their first six-game winning streak since 1940.

#19 STANFORD 24, WASHINGTON STATE 17
Stanford’s defense was the story of this game, holding the Cougars to minus-sixteen yards rushing, sacking quarterback Jeff Tuel ten times and forcing one costly interception that was returned for a fourth-quarter touchdown that put the Cardinal up by two scores. This is the third time this season the Cougars have been held to negative rushing yards. By comparison, the rest of the FBS combined has just five such games. Washington State has lost 19 straight games to ranked teams, a streak dating back to 2006, while Stanford has now won 14 straight road games against unranked foes.

#21 BOISE STATE 45, WYOMING 14
Boise State overcame a slow start and put up 31 unanswered points to move to 7-0 all-time against Wyoming. The Broncos defense was once again dominant, holding the Cowboys to just 270 yards of offense (54 rushing) and returning a third-quarter fumble for a touchdown. Broncos running back D.J. Harper rushed for 105 yards and two touchdowns in the win. Wyoming was playing without head coach Dave Christensen, who was suspended for one game following an obscenity-filled tirade at Air Force coaches after their Oct. 13 game. The Broncos have won 48 straight games in the month of October, a streak dating back to 2001.

#22 TEXAS A&M 63, AUBURN 21
The stats really speak for themselves: at halftime, A&M had outgained the Tigers 464-91. The Aggies had 28 points on the board before Auburn ever made a first down. The Aggies scored on seven of their first eight possessions and jumped out to a 49-7 lead before the starters were pulled early in the third quarter. Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel accounted for 350 total yards and four touchdowns in just over two quarters of play. Auburn is off to its first 1-7 start since 1952.

MIAMI (OH) 23, #23 OHIO 20 – UPSET
Ohio’s dreams of busting the BCS came to a dramatic end Saturday, as the Miami (OH) RedHawks took the lead with just 1:24 to go and then sealed the victory when Ohio quarterback Tyler Tettleton took a sack rather than throwing the ball away with just seconds on the clock. Miami receiver Nick Harwell caught eight passes for 138 yards and a touchdown in the upset win.

#24 LOUISIANA TECH 28, NEW MEXICO STATE 14
Louisiana Tech quarterback Colby Cameron threw for 292 yards and a touchdown while rushing for another score to lead the Bulldogs to their first-ever win as a ranked team. Louisiana Tech missed three field goals, but the Lobos were unable to capitalize, turning the ball over three times. This was New Mexico State’s seventh-straight loss.

#25 WEST VIRGINIA BYE
After back-to-back blowout losses, the Mountaineers got a much-needed week off to stop the bleeding and prepare for next week’s contest against fellow Big 12 newcomer TCU.

Our TOP 10

1. Alabama

2. Oregon

3. Kansas State

4. Notre Dame

5. LSU

6. Georgia

7. Florida State

8. Louisville

9. Clemson

10. Florida

Don’t discount… Oregon State, Texas A&M, USC, Boise State, Stanford. For a complete list of the BCS Standings, visit http://www.bcsfootball.org/

Our original, pre-season Top 10 can be found by clicking here.

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McDonald All-American Games

Posted on October 29, 2012. Filed under: AAU, Basketball, Basketball, Boys High School Basketball, Girls High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

High School Basketball best is Chicago-bound at least for a few years….

August 2012

McDonald’s announced on Wednesday that the boys and girls All American Games will stay in Chicago at the United Center through 2015, with an option for 2016.

Bottom line, the fans keep turning out to watch the best-of-the-best in high school basketball.

“Fans throughout the U.S. can now make Chicago their destination to see the greatest high school basketball players participate in this annual rite of passage,” Douglas Freeland, director of the games, said in a release.

According to McDonald’s, Chicago ranks first in average attendance with 17, 388 in the three years it has hosted the game (1982, 2011, 2012). Philadelphia is a distant second with 11,610 in two years hosting.

The 2013 game will take place on April 3. Tickets will be available in January and the rosters will be announced in February.

For more, click here.

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2012 Illinois takes on Indiana for homecoming

Posted on October 27, 2012. Filed under: Football, NCAA Sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Who will receive their first conference win?

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AmateurSports365.com) — As the subheading ask, well, it was Indiana defeating Illinois, 31-17, in front of 47,981 here at Memorial Stadium on Saturday afternoon. This win gives Hoosiers their first victory in the Big Ten Conference Leaders Division and hopefully getting their season back on the right track.

“It was a good win; the guys played hard,” coach Kevin Wilson shared during post-game. “I don’t know if we played particularly well; the defense rallied up and played well down the stretch. We didn’t turn it over, just the one pick early.”

Fighting Illini gots things going offensively on their opening possession with an 8-play, 73 yard drive that ended with a 2 yard pass from junior quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase to Eddie Viliunas (7-0).

Indiana answered on their second possession of the game with a 9 play, 75 yard drive ending with a 2-yard touchdown run by Stephen Houston tying the score 7-7. It is important to note that Mr. Houston has now scored in every contest so far for the Hoosiers, and a total of three times in the first half.

Scheelhaase (17 for 27, 176) gave the Illini back the lead (14-7) on an 8-play, 55-yard drive resulting in him running the ball in from 5 yards out in the second quarter.

Hoosiers tied the game (14-14) with 10:10 in the second quarter when Houston scored for the second time in the game on a 10-yard screen pass from Coffman. This scoring drive was setup by a 48-yard pass from Nate Sudfield to Cody Latimer.

Sudfeld took over as QB1 as starting quarterback Cameron Coffman was benched and this sparked the team as coach Wilson shared. “Yeah, (this move was) a little spark.”

Shortly after their second score, Indiana obtained their first lead (21-14) in the game when, Illinois senior, Tommy Davis, muffed a punt giving the Hoosiers the ball deep in their territory. Four plays later, Mr. Houston scored for the third time from 7 yards out, and with this score, they never looked back. The junior back finished the game 21 carries for 73 yards, plus 16 yards receiving.

The Hoosiers did everything they planned to do, including containing Illinois’ rushing attack and force the Illini to become one-dimensional. In addition, Hoosiers defense created two key turnovers.

Illini had chances, lots of them, but couldn’t capitalize, the way Indiana did on the afternoon. The Hoosiers final score came off of a 6 play, 60-yard drive in which Sudfield (10-15 for 107, 2 touchdowns) connected with Shane Wynn (31-17).

Indiana’s season started off very well with a pair of wins over non-conference foes Indiana State (24-17) and UMass (45-6), but since then it has continued to tailspin with now six consecutive losses. The Hoosiers’ four losses in league play have come in hard-fought battles against very good teams in Northwestern (44-29), Michigan State (31-27), Ohio State (52-49) and now Illinois (31-17). This makes their official Big Ten record 4-26 since the start of the 2008 season.

“We talked about how you want to get used to that feeling (of winning) and the best way to do that was to prepare and tonight we’re on a college campus and let’s try to be winning team,” coach Wilson added with perspective of the victory today. “We’ve been doing a lot of things right and it’s nice to get a Saturday scoreboard to go our way and we want a more of those.”

Saturday was homecoming for Illinois, but as Memorial Stadium emptied, the Hoosiers did all of the celebrating. The team gathered in the southeast corner of the stadium with a few dozen red-clad fans who likely shared the team’s relief in finally getting a win.

“Well, it’s Homecoming and I’m not used to being involved in losses,” said coach Tim Beckman after the game. “So I guess first and foremost, the game of football is played when you don’t turn the football over and you don’t beat yourself.”

This lose gives Illinois a five-game losing streak and they continue to spiral with multiple double-digit losses and today they suffered eight penalties for 81 yards, along with penalties, sacks and turnovers were costly. On a brighter note, the Illini had one of their best rushing days of the season with 196 yards, and had 23 first downs to Indiana’s 14.

“I was proud of the way we blocked on the perimeter and the way guys ran,” coach Beckman concluded.

Next for Indiana will host Iowa (November 3); Illinois will travel to Ohio State on the same day.

CHAMPAIGN ROOM Q&A POST GAME

Illinois coach Tim Beckman “there’s not one play that loses a games and that’s what you teach these young men, it’s a number of plays.”

Illinois coach Tim Beckman has never faced the Hoosiers until not, while IU coach Kevin Wilson is 1-1 against the Illini.

Illinois has an all-time record is now 44-56-2 on Homecoming and is 4-3 all-time in Homecoming games against the Hoosiers.

The Hoosiers have scored 24 or more points in each of their games this season, the first time they have pulled off that trick in school history.

IU is averaging 13.3 points more per game this season than it did last year (34.7 vs. 21.4).

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2012 Illinois vs. Indiana Football Pregame

Posted on October 25, 2012. Filed under: Football, NCAA Sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Who will receive their first conference win?

October 26, 2012

Illinois (2-5, 0-3) return to Memorial Stadum for the first time in four weeks to host the Indiana Hoosiers (2-5, 0-3) as part of the University of Illinois’ 102nd Homecoming celebration on Saturday (11 am CT, BTN). Illini have played 28 games after a bye in the modern era and are 11-17 in those contests.

A pair of teams still winless in the Big Ten Conference Leaders Division try to get their seasons back on the right track when the Illinois Fighting Illini host the Indiana Hoosiers on Saturday afternoon. Indiana’s season started off very well with a pair of wins over non-conference foes Indiana State (24-17) and UMass (45-6), but since then it has gone into a tailspin with five consecutive losses. The Hoosiers’ three losses in league play have come in hard-fought battles against very good teams in Northwestern (44-29), Michigan State (31-27) and Ohio State (52-49). Still, they have gone just 3-25 against Big Ten opponents since the start of the 2008 season. On the other hand, Illinois is in the midst of a four-game losing streak, falling most recently to Michigan on Oct. 13, 45-0. Unlike the Hoosiers however, the Illini have not shown much promise in their games, with all five of their losses coming by 14 points or more. They have scored a pair of wins at Memorial Stadium, although they came against obviously inferior competition (24-7 versus Western Michigan, 44-0 versus Charleston Southern).

KEYS TO THE GAME
Indiana must contain Illinois’ rushing attack and force the Illini to become one-dimensional. That means doing a better job of bottling up the read-option play that is a staple of Illinois’ offense and not allowing the Illini to run off the big plays that were so devastating to the Hoosiers when they played Northwestern and Ohio State earlier this year. IU’s defense must create turnovers, and the Hoosiers can’t suffer through offensive brownouts in the fourth quarter. Indiana must be disciplined and limit its mistakes on both sides of the ball.

FUN FACTS
This week’s game marks the 70th meeting between the Fighting Illini and the Indiana Hoosiers. The Illini have won four of the last five against the Hoosiers and hold a 45-21-3 overall series advantage against IU. The Illini won last year’s meeting in Bloomington, 41-20, giving the Illini a 6-0 start to the season.

Illinois coach Tim Beckman has never faced the Hoosiers, while IU coach Kevin Wilson is 0-1 against the Illini.

The last two times the Hoosiers have come to Illinois’ Memorial Stadium, the Illini have put up 55 (2008) and 43 (2010) points in blowout victories.

INJURIES
ILLINOIS
QUESTIONABLE: Defensive end Tim Kynard (10/21, ankle), Kicker Nick Immekus (10/21, undisclosed), Tackle Corey Lewis (10/21, knee)

PROBABLE: Cornerback Terry Hawthorne (10/23, neck), Quarterback Nathan Scheelhaase (10/23, concussion)

OUT FOR THE SEASON: Defensive tackle Jake Howe (10/1, leg) and Linebacker Henry Dickinson (8/26, ankle/leg).

INDIANA
LB Chase Hoobler has returned to practice and could see playing time vs. Illinois this week. He last played in the first quarter in Week Two vs. UMass.

LB Jacarri Alexander has been banged up and missed last week’s game, but he is expected to be back this week.

HOMECOMING FACTS
The first homecoming celebrated on Illinois’ campus was on Oct. 15, 1910, which the Illini won 3-0 over Chicago. This year’s game against Indiana marks the Illini’s 102nd Homecoming.

Illinois has an all-time record of 44-55-2 on Homecoming.

This year will mark the seventh time overall and the second time in the last three years that the Illini have hosted Indiana on Homecoming. Illinois is 4-2 all-time in Homecoming games against the Hoosiers.

Oct. 23, 2010: Illinois 43, Indiana 13

Oct. 7, 2006: Indiana 34, Illinois 32

Oct. 25, 2002: Illinois 45, Indiana 14

Oct. 17, 1970: Indiana 30, Illinois 24

Oct. 16, 1965: Illinois 34, Indiana 13

Oct. 28, 1950: Illinois 20, Indiana 0

We will be in Champaign LIVE to breakdown the game… stay tune to AmateurSports365.com for updates, or follow us via twitter at @ASNN365.  If you don’t have the Big Ten network, you can watch the game LIVE online at http://livesportsforu.com/ncaa.html

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2012 NCAA Football – Week 8

Posted on October 22, 2012. Filed under: Football, NCAA Sports | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Heart pounding finishes in several contest…

October 2012

Big Ten football isn’t always pretty, but one thing is for sure lack of separation between most of the teams means close, hard-hitting games every week. Week 8 was no different – three games came down to the last or almost last snap: Michigan’s 12-10 win over Michigan State, Nebraska’s 29-28 squeaker over Northwestern, and Ohio State’s improbable 29-22 overtime comeback victory over Purdue. Indiana even went down to the wire in a 31-30 loss to Navy.

Ohio State 29 Purdue 22 OT

Ohio State pulled one out in a game that they should have lost.  Braxton Miller was injured on the late in the third quarter and was taken to the hospital.  Purdue led 22-14 when Ohio State drove 51 yards to tie the game after the two point conversion.  Kenny Guiton came in to relieve Miller and threw a two yard TD pass to tie the game.  The loss over-shadowed a good defensive effort by the Purdue defense led by DT Kawann Short. Short is one of the best DT in the country and has now had two good games against good competition.  Earlier this year Short had a monster game in a loss to Notre Dame.

Up Next: Ohio State at Penn State, Purdue at Minnesota

Michigan 12 Michigan State 10  

Somewhere up above Fielding Yost and Bo Schembechler are smiling as Michigan football recorded their 900th victory. The Wolverines are on a roll after early season losses to Alabama and Notre Dame.  This one wasn’t pretty as it was a defensive struggle most of the way.  Michigan was down 10-9 with two minutes to play when Denard Robinson drove the ball 36 yards to set-up a Brendan Gibbons 38 yard field goal to win the game.  Robinson had 259 yards of offense on the day. The Spartans are reeling offensively when Le’Veon Bell can’t get off running.  Bell was held to 68 yards on 28 carries.

Up Next: Michigan at Nebraska, Michigan State at Wisconsin

Nebraska 29, Northwestern 28

There isn’t really anything funny I can say about this matchup as it was actually a great game. Both Nebraska and Northwestern look like teams that will earn above-average bowl games.  Nebraska now has an important tie-breaking win that will factor in the much more interesting chase for the Legends Division crown. Up next: Michigan at Nebraska, Iowa at Northwestern

Wisconsin 38, Minnesota 13

Ladies and gentlemen, your 2012 Leaders Division winner Wisconsin Badgers! I know it’s only half way through the Big Ten schedule but seriously, Wisconsin (3-1 in Big Ten play) is the default winner of this division. Ohio State and Penn State are ineligible, Indiana can’t close out games, Purdue is mediocre and Illinois is terrible. Enjoy the trip to Indy, Wisconsin, you are the least terrible!

Up Next: Purdue at Minnesota, Michigan State at Wisconsin

Penn State 38, Iowa 14

Penn State continues to impress despite coming into the year following one of, if not the most, disastrous off-field distractions in sports history. Iowa wasn’t the strongest opponent but the Nittany Lions handled the Hawkeyes fairly easily, almost doubling them up in total offensive yards.

Navy 31, Indiana 30

For weeks it seemed that if Indiana’s defense could contain opponents, the Hoosiers could start winning games. Turns out what’s really keeping the Hoosiers from winning is their inability to finish games. For the third time during their current five game losing streak, the Hoosiers have blown fourth quarter leads, each one in a different way. The Ball State game was a double last-second comeback for both teams that ended in the Cardinals favor. The Michigan State game was controlled by the Hoosiers early, but gradually lost, resulting in a go-ahead score for the Spartans halfway through the fourth quarter. Now the Hoosiers blow a two-score lead in the final six minutes to Navy. The Hoosiers may lose almost every game, but at least they keep us guessing how they will lose it. The only way this team can truly get its confidence back is to beat up on a terrible team. Hello Illinois!

Illinois gets an extra week of practice before they play what looks like their only chance for a Big Ten win this season when it hosts Indiana. I researched, and yes, one of them will leave that weekend having won a Big Ten game, and we’ll be there LIVE.

FINAL OBSERVATION OF THE BIG TEN…

Big Ten football can almost expect these types of games over the final month and a half of the season, with unpredictable results and an exciting league race, especially in the Legends Division. They might not be as sexy or thrilling as watching a national championship contest, or most SEC games, but they will certainly keep Big Ten fans’ hearts pounding. Thus, a specific collision courses are all set for October. 27 in BIG Ten: Michigan and Nebraska! Both teams show grit to survive difficult tests, making their meeting in Lincoln a crucial one for the Legends Division race. With Iowa and Northwestern both losing, the Wolverines and Huskers stand as the top two teams in the division, and they have an intriguing game on tap. Nebraska’s high-scoring offense, which is even more potent at home, will try to top Michigan’s rapidly improving defense. Denard Robinson versus Taylor Martinez is a marquee matchup. In addition, Penn State – Ohio State!!!! Neither can make it to the Big Ten title game, due to sanctions, but they can have the best record in the Leaders conference and might just be the best two teams in the league, not just the division too. They will square off in State College in what should be a highly charged atmosphere. Add in the renewal of the recent rivalry between Wisconsin and Michigan State and a do-or-die Legends game between Northwestern and Iowa, and you can see why the Saturday before Halloween should be scary good.

NOTE: We will be LIVE in Champaign, Illinois for the Indiana – Illinois game!

Tune in next week for our recap!

****OTHER CONTEST ON OUR RADAR****
Notre Dame 17 BYU 14

A battle of great LB’s in this one with Notre Dame’s Manti T’eo and BYU’s Kyle Van Noy. T’eo is a Mormon by faith and spurned going to BYU which still doesn’t sit well in Provo.  Both Van Noy and T’eo answered the bell and had interceptions in the game.  Notre Dame’s defense is first class but this team isn’t national championship material with this offense.  Tyler Eifert is their only passing weapon and it seems they target him on every play. Notre Dame did rush for 279 yards on the ground.

NORTHERN 37, Akron 7

AKRON, Ohio (AP) – Jordan Lynch threw two touchdowns and rushed for two more as Northen Illinois routed Akron 37-7 Saturday in Mid-American Conference action. Lynch finished with 223 yards on 20 of 33 passing and threw touchdown passes of nine and four yards. Northern Illinois (7-1, 4-1) held a 13-7 lead before Lynch’s 15-yard touchdown run gave the Huskies a 20-7 advantage at halftime. After Lynch’s second touchdown pass pushed the lead to 30-7, his second touchdown run, this time a 35-yarder, created the final margin. Lynch, who finished with 131 yards on the ground, has rushed for 100-plus yards in each of the Huskies’ last six games. Akron (1-7, 0-4) struggled to move the ball, gaining just 194 yards on 65 plays from scrimmage.

Northern Illinois has won 16 of its last 17 games. Its last lost was by one point to Iowa in the 2012 season opener.

WEEK 8 FUN FACTS

 Interceptions this season of Alabama QB AJ McCarron. He ran his streak of attempts without an interception to 239 in the 44-13 win at Tennessee, extending his school record. He and Louisiana Tech’s Colby Cameron are the only QBs (minimum 15 attempts a game) in FBS not to be intercepted this season.

 There are only two unbeatens left in FCS… Cal Poly moved to 7-0 with a 37-25 Big Sky win against Portland State, and Lehigh moved to 8-0 with a 42-19 homecoming win against Bucknell.

 Southern Illinois has scored on three consecutive games on a blocked punt in a 38-21 win against Youngstown State. The Salukis, who also scored on a fumble recovery and interception, have won all three of those games.

 Savannah State has thirteen (13) consecutive losses and it’s the longest active streak in FCS, before outlasting Edward Waters (Fla.) of the NAIA 42-35. The Tigers had 51 points in their first six games this season.

 Harvard had fourteen (14) consecutive wins, longest active streak in all of Division I, before a 39-34 loss at Princeton. The Tigers had 29 points in the fourth quarter, including Quinn Epperly’s 36-yard touchdown pass to Roman Wilson with 13 seconds left.

 Southern Methodist scored a school record of 72-points  in their 72-42 win against Houston. The Mustangs had nine takeaways, tying a school record for most against an FBS team, converting four into touchdowns.

 USC’s Matt Barkley tossed a career record 102 touchdown passes, setting school and Pac-12 records. He had six TD tosses in all Saturday in a 50-6 win against Colorado. Four of them went to Robert Woods, who also set a school record for career receptions and now has 220.

Our TOP 10
1. Alabama (7-0)

2. Oregon (7-0)

3. Kansas State (7-0)

4. Florida (7-0)

5. Notre Dame (7-0)

6. LSU (7-1)

7. Oregon State (6-0)

8. Oklahoma (5-1)

9. USC (6-1)

10. Georgia (6-1)

Don’t discount… Florida State, South Carolina, Rutgers, Louisville. For a complete list of the BCS Standings, visit http://www.bcsfootball.org/

Our original, pre-season Top 10 can be found by clicking here.

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“Capturing the Art of Sport in Motion”
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2012 NCAA Football – Week 7

Posted on October 18, 2012. Filed under: Football, NCAA Sports, Sporting News | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

August 2012

Northern Illinois rout Buffalo 45-3

(AP) — Jordan Lynch ran for a pair of first-half touchdowns and threw two scoring passes in the second half as Northern Illinois rolled to a 45-3 victory over Buffalo on Saturday.

Northern Illinois (6-1, 3-0 MAC 2nd place west division behind toledo. Play them Nov 14) got 129 yards on the ground from Lynch, and he completed 13 of 20 passes for 232 yards. Martel Moore caught 8 passes for 133 yards and a TD.

Buffalo (1-5, 0-3) was pressured by the Northern Illinois defense most of the day. Northern Illinois intercepted Alex Zordich on two occasions and sacked him twice.

Devon Hughes caught 9 passes for 105 yards for Buffalo.

Iowa knocks off favorite Michgan State at hm 19-16

(AP) — Mark Weisman ran for 116 yards and scored a tying touchdown in the final minute of regulation, and Iowa went on to beat Michigan State 19-16 in double overtime Saturday.

Mike Meyer kicked field goals in both overtimes, including a 42-yarder in the second that gave the Hawkeyes (4-2, 2-0 Big Ten) their first lead of the game. Iowa then won it when Andrew Maxwell‘s deflected pass was intercepted by Greg Castillo.

Le’Veon Bell ran for 140 yards and a touchdown for Michigan State, but the Spartans (4-3, 1-2) couldn’t hold on late. Iowa drove 68 yards in nine plays and tied it at 13 on Weisman’s 5-yard scoring run with 55 seconds left in the fourth quarter.

The Hawkeyes appeared to be in trouble late in the fourth when they faced second-and-26 from their own 16, but James Vandenberg found Keenan Davis single covered along the right sideline for a 35-yard gain.

Weisman’s 37-yard run on third-and-6 gave Iowa the ball at the Michigan State 8 and set up the tying TD, which also came on third down.

The teams traded short field goals in the first overtime. Michigan State could have won it with a touchdown in the second, but Maxwell’s pass appeared to be tipped at the line of scrimmage, then deflected off the hands of wide receiver Keith Mumphery and was intercepted by Castillo.

It was the first interception for Maxwell since he threw three in the season opener against Boise State.

On a rainy day at Spartan Stadium, Vandenberg threw an early interception when his pass was tipped by defensive lineman William Gholston and picked off by Denicos Allen.

Michigan State took over at the Iowa 26 and gave the ball to Bell four straight times. His 14-yard touchdown run made it 7-0.

The Hawkeyes trailed 10-0 in the second quarter when Jordan Cotton had a kickoff return for a touchdown nullified by an illegal block. Iowa still ended up with the ball near midfield and drove for a field goal.

Michigan State missed a chance to score in the final seconds of the half because of a farcical miscommunication. Maxwell completed a 19-yard pass to Mumphery to the Iowa 32 with 6 seconds left. The clock stopped momentarily because of the first down, but there was mass confusion among the Spartans, who needed only to stop the clock with a spike and bring their field-goal unit out.

Michigan State eventually got lined up – but Maxwell, the quarterback, was nowhere to be seen. Bell went to the line of scrimmage as if to take the snap himself, and Maxwell finally ran over from the sideline to the backfield, but the clock ran out.

 

Michigan cruises over Illinois 45-0

(AP) — Denard Robinson overcame his mysterious first-quarter injury and then brushed aside the Illini almost as easily.

Robinson threw two touchdown passes and ran for two scores, leading No. 25 Michigan in a 45-0 win over the Fighting Illini (0-3, 2-5) on Saturday.

The Wolverines (4-2, 2-0 Big Ten) got a scare when Robinson left the game with an undisclosed injury late in the first quarter. He missed just one-plus possessions, though, and returned to score on a 6-yard run – his second of four touchdowns – to put Michigan up 17-0 late in the first half.

”It was just a boo-boo,” said Robinson, declining to say what sent him out of the game briefly. ”It’s all good. It didn’t bother me at all.”

Robinson threw two TD passes, ran for two scores and accounted for 287 yards, giving him 10,000-plus career yards on offense.

He was 7 of 11 for 159 yards and connected with Jeremy Gallon, who turned a short toss into a 71-yard score, and perfectly lofted an 8-yard pass to Devin Funchess in the end zone.

Robinson ran 11 times for 128 yards – his 18th career 100-yard game on the ground – and the highlight was a juke-filled, 49-yard run that put Michigan ahead 24-0 early in the second half.

”He made people miss tackles,” Fighting Illini coach Tim Beckman said. ”He’s a very, very good football player. He had a sensational game.”

The Wolverines were also pretty good on defense. They had their first shutout since beating Minnesota 58-0 a little more than a year ago and held Illinois to 134 yards of offense with just 13 yards after halftime.

”It’s embarrassing,” Illinois center Graham Pocic said. ”We can’t put it all together.”

Michigan also made plays on special teams with freshman Dennis Norfleet returning a punt 42 yards, not giving up a yard on four punts, allowed no more than 21 yards on a kickoff return and connected on its only field goal.

”It’s probably as complete as we played,” Wolverines coach Brady Hoke said. ”But it’s not nearly good enough.”

Michigan gave its fans a lot of reasons to cheer on a chilly, rainy day, but the fans cloaked in maize and blue ponchos were loudest when it was announced that rival Michigan State lost earlier in the day at home to Iowa. The Wolverines will host the Spartans (4-3, 1-2) on Saturday, hoping to snap a four-game losing streak in the series, but insisted they won’t start thinking about that matchup until Sunday.

The Fighting Illini (2-5, 0-3) had their starting quarterback, Nathan Scheelhaase, knocked out of the game because of concussion in the second quarter.

Scheelhaase completed two passes for 4 yards and ran six times for 34 yards, including a 23-yard gain in which he was injured when he landed face first in the turf when Jibreel Black hit him from behind.

”I grabbed Nate when he came off the field and he said he was all right and wanted to go back in the game,” Beckman said. ”But he did some things that proved he wasn’t all right. Our doctors made the right decision.”

Scheelhaase was replaced by Reilly O’Toole, whose two turnovers in the third quarter helped Michigan pull away. O’Toole was 5 of 10 for 25 yards and lost 8 yards on five carries.

In the first half, Illinois had chances to keep it close.

Beckman chose to attempt a 50-yard field goal – instead of going for a fourth-and-4 from the Michigan 32 down by 10 points – and Taylor Zalewski missed the kick, ending the drive in which Scheelhaase was hurt. The Illini turned the ball over on downs on their next possession when running back Donovonn Young was dropped for a loss by Kenny Demens on a fourth-and-1 from the Michigan 41.

The Wolverines turned the lopsided game into a rout with 21 points in the third, turning two turnovers into TDs and forcing the Illini to lose 9 yards in the quarter.

On Illinois’ first snap of the second half, O’Toole threw an interception to Demens and the linebacker returned it 13 yards to the Illini 27 to set up another TD. Toole avoided getting sacked by Jake Ryan later in the third quarter, but held onto the ball long enough for the outside linebacker to get back to him to force a fumble at the Illinois 6.

Fitzgerald Toussaint, who had 62 yards rushing on 18 carries, scored on a 2-yard run two plays later to put the Wolverines ahead 38-0.

Michigan put backup Russell Bellomy, who replaced Robinson when he was hurt, came back in and promptly fumbled the ball away on the first drive of the fourth quarter.

Later, Bellomy handed off to Thomas Rawls up the middle and the backup running back did the rest, breaking two tackles on a 63-yard run to give Michigan a 45-0 lead later in the fourth.

Just before kickoff, college football’s winningest school unretired the jersey worn by former President Gerald Ford. The Wolverines let linebacker Desmond Morgan to wear No. 48 with a ”Michigan Football Legends,” patch and he made a tackle on Illinois’ first play.

”It’s quite an honor and privilege,” Morgan said.

 

Northwestern squeeks passed Minnesota 21-13

(AP) — Venric Mark rushed for 182 yards and two touchdowns to carry Northwestern to a 21-13 victory over Minnesota on Saturday.

Mark wasn’t touched on scoring runs of 26 and 48 yards and the Wildcats (6-1, 2-1 Legends Divison behind Michigan and Iowa) overcame 11 penalties to become bowl eligible and spoil Minnesota’s homecoming celebration.

MarQueis Gray rushed for 86 yards and a touchdown after missing the previous two games with knee and ankle injuries. But he also threw an interception and was injured again late in the third quarter for the Golden Gophers (4-2, 0-2).

The Gophers had a chance for a tying touchdown late, but Northwestern’s defense stiffened at the 6-yard line to keep them out of the end zone. Cornerback Nick VanHoose made the key play on the stand, batting a pass away from A.J. Barker in the end zone to save a touchdown.

Less than 10 seconds into the game, Northwestern was already up 7-0. Gophers linebacker Lamonte Edwards, a converted running back, botched the opening kickoff and C.J. Bryant pounced on it to give the Wildcats the ball at Minnesota’s 26-yard line.

Mark took the handoff, burst through the line and saw nothing but daylight, racing 26 yards untouched for the score.

That would be a common theme throughout the first half. Mark added a 48-yard scoring run in the second quarter, a burst through the middle where nary a finger was laid on him. He also had runs of 47 and 25 yards in the first half to help the Wildcats take a 21-10 lead.

Mark’s big day on the ground eliminated any need for Northwestern’s passing game, and that was a good thing for the Wildcats. Kain Colter was 10 for 10, but for just 63 yards. And Trevor Siemian, the passing specialist in the Wildcats’ two-quarterback system, was 1 for 7 for 4 yards.

Mark’s big 48-yard TD helped neutralize a brief bit of momentum for the Gophers.

When Max Shortell went out with an injured left hand late in the first quarter, Gray ripped off a 25-yard touchdown run at the start of the second to pull Minnesota to 14-10.

But David Nwabuisi made an acrobatic, one-handed interception off of a pass tipped by Quentin Williams to stall the Gophers. Mark was off to the races two plays later, and the Wildcats were on their way to a rebound victory after losing at Penn State last week.

It was another disappointing effort for the Gophers, who were starting to create some optimism on campus with a 4-0 start to the season. But a 31-13 thumping at Iowa two weeks ago brought them back down to earth, and they followed that up with a sloppy, mistake-prone performance coming out of their bye.

They fumbled the ball seven times, losing two, and committed nine penalties.

The turnovers were compounded by three bad snaps from center Zac Epping and some curious play-calling that stunted several drives. After calling time out and pulling their offense off the field on fourth-and-11 from Northwestern’s 36, they ran kicker Jordan Wettstein out for a 53-yard field-goal try. The Wildcats weren’t buying it from the start, and a fake run was thwarted easily to turn the ball over.

On third-and-13 from the Northwestern 46, they called a draw to Donnell Kirkwood that gained just 5 yards. And with no timeouts and the ball at their own 49 with just over a minute to play in the first half, the Gophers called a draw to Gray that went nowhere and took any chance of a late score out of the equation.

Wisconsin digs deep for a win on the road over Purdue 38-14

(AP) — Montee Ball ran for a career-high 247 yards and scored three touchdowns to help Wisconsin beat Purdue 38-14 on Saturday afternoon.

James White added 124 yards rushing for the Badgers (5-2, 2-1 3rd place in Leaders divsion behind Ohio St, Penn St – two teams that do NOT qualify for post-season), who outgained Purdue 645 yards to 252. The Badgers pounded out 467 yards rushing in the rain.

Ball moved past Texas Tech’s Taurean Henderson and now is alone in third place in NCAA history with 72 total career touchdowns.

Akeem Hunt ran for 85 yards and a touchdown for Purdue. The Boilermakers (3-3, 0-2), who were coming off a 44-13 loss to Michigan, travel to Ohio State next week.

The win gives Wisconsin a favorable position in the Big Ten’s Leaders Division, especially since Ohio State and Penn State cannot qualify for the conference title game because of NCAA rules violations.

There were plenty of empty seats at Ross-Ade Stadium, and that number grew as the rain and Wisconsin’s lead increased.

Purdue used three quarterbacks, and none were effective. Starter Caleb TerBush and backups Robert Marve and Rob Henry combined to miss on 20 of their 31 throws. They combined for 124 yards and were sacked five times. It took Purdue more than 17 minutes to get a first down in the second half.

Things started off well for the Boilermakers. Hunt returned the opening kickoff 44 yards, then TerBush hit Antavian Edison for 52 yards on the first play from scrimmage. TerBush’s quarterback sneak on the next play gave the Boilermakers a 7-0 lead 38 seconds into the game.

Wisconsin came back a few minutes later when Joel Stave hit Jacob Pedersen wide open for a 21-yard touchdown.

Ball scored from the 3 to give Wisconsin a 14-7 lead. A 30-yard field goal by Kyle French pushed the margin to 17-7 by halftime. The Badgers outgained Purdue 363 yards to 118 before the break, yet did not have firm control of the game.

Ball busted loose for a 67-yard touchdown run in the first minute of the second half to push Wisconsin’s lead to 24-7.

Beau Allen blocked a Purdue punt, and the Badgers took over at the Boilermakers’ 22. Ball scored again, this time from 3 yards out, to push Wisconsin’s lead to 31-7.

White scored from 14 yards out with 8:47 to play, and Wisconsin pushed its lead to 38-7.

Hunt finally gave the few remaining Purdue fans something to cheer about. His 81-yard touchdown run with 1:39 to play trimmed Wisconsin’s lead to 38-14.

 

Ohio State 52, Indiana 49

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Ben Wilson Story by ESPN 30 for 30

Posted on October 17, 2012. Filed under: Basketball, Boys High School Basketball, Sporting News | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

ESPN presents….

October 2012

Ben “benji” Wilson
picture care of wikipedia

To many the name Ben Wilson may be unfamiliar, but to us Chicagoans he was our court magician… See in the early 80s, he was considered the best basketball player in the nation and he resided where else but Chicago. Wilson, who was commonly known as “Benji,” played for Simeon High School on the south side and he was gunned down by two gangbangers on the eve of his first games for his senior season.

Wilson is the reason that Derrick Rose wore the number 25 while attending Simeon. ESPN premieres the much anticipated 30 for 30 on Wilson and his life October 23 as part of the award-winning “30 for 30” documentary series.

Check out an earlier documentary on “Benji” that aired on Comcast Sports Network a few years back by visiting http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=esCHW1ylEHQ.

Be sure to bookmark our site, as well as follow us on Twitter at @ASNN365 (like us also on Facebook – @ASNN365).

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Should College Athletes be Paid

Posted on October 11, 2012. Filed under: Baseball, Basketball, Football, NCAA Sports, Sports Business | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

College Atheletes… should they be paid?

September 2012

This editorial is part of our GREAT DEBATE feature ‘Should College Athletes Get Paid?’

An NCAA study revealed that college athletes spend about 40 hours per week just playing their sport. In return, college athletes receive payment in the form of a scholarship worth tens of thousands of dollars, a portion of which the IRS taxes as income.

Athletes who fail to participate in mandatory practices or games have their scholarships terminated. So college athletes are already paid to play.

So why all the fuss over this topic?

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