Notes From Media Day
August 17, 2011 – | No Comment

Before I begin, I should probably explain why we haven’t posted in a while. Frankly, it’s just been bad timing. I just got back from a study abroad program in Europe, and Charlie is still …

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Week Three Big Ten Picks

Submitted by on September 18, 20092 Comments

This week’s edition will be short and sweet!

The Big Ten took a couple hits last week, but for the most part performed well. This week’s premier game may be the Michigan State road game at Notre Dame. Can the Spartans pull off another victory in South Bend after losing to Central Michigan a week ago?

The biggest home game for the Big Ten will take place at Minnesota, where the 2-0 Golden Gophers will welcome #8 California from the PAC 10.

Michigan (2-0) vs. Eastern Michigan (0-2)
12:00 PM, Big Ten Network

The Wolverines picked up a very good win last week against Notre Dame. With the emergence of Tate Forcier at quarterback the offense seems to have a new life and is performing well under Rich Rodriguez’s system. I am looking for another big day from the Michigan offense and defense as the Wolverines pick up their third win to start the season. A win would match their total from 2008.

Prediction: Michigan wins 38-14

Wisconsin (2-0) vs. Wofford (1-1)
12:00 PM, Big Ten Network

Wisconsin takes it easy this week with a game against FCS opponent Wofford. The Badgers picked up a decent win last week against Fresno State in double overtime. No need to really analyze this one too much. Wisconsin should win with ease.

Prediction:Wisconsin wins 38-10

Purdue (1-1) vs. Northern Illinois (1-1)
12:00 PM, Big Ten Network

The Purdue Boilermakers have been a bit of a surprise early on. The offense has been better than I expected and last week they gave Oregon a run for their money in Autzen Stadium. As they return home I have to give the edge to the little engine that could against Northern Illinois. The huskies lost their season opener at Wisconsin and will likely go 0-2 against the Big Ten this season.

Prediction: Purdue wins 31-24

Minnesota (2-0) vs. California (2-0)
12:00 PM, ESPN, ESPN360

This is a big one. The Minnesota football program could use a nice signature win to vault them into the Top 25 polls but it would be great to see them christen the new stadium with a win over a top ten caliber team. Don’t count on it happening.

California looks to have one of the better offenses in the nation and it should be tough for Minnesota to go toe-to-toe with that kind of offense. Crazier things have certainly happened, but I would not count on Minnesota going 3-0.

Prediction: California wins 24-20

Ohio State (1-1) vs. Toledo (1-1)
12:00 PM, ESPN360

This game will take place on a neutral site in Cleveland, although Toledo will be considered the home team. Don’t try telling that to the large contingent of Ohio State fans that will be sure to take over the stadium though. Ohio State is reeling after a loss to USC in a high profile match-up, but they have dominated programs from with in their home state. Look for that trend to continue against a Toledo team that put up 5 points against Colorado last week.

The Ohio State defense will be aggressive and Terrelle Pryor should have a better game this week against an inferior opponent. Look for Toledo to win the early emotional battles, but look for Ohio State to pull away in the second half.

Prediction: Ohio State wins 38-13

Indiana (2-0) @ Akron (1-1)
3:30 PM, ESPNU

Indiana has avoided disaster and escaped the jaws of defeat in two consecutive weeks. This week they pay a visit to former Penn State opponent Akron. This will be the first time Akron has hosted a Big Ten team on their home turf. Akron will likely pick up a victory in their new stadium over the Hoosiers. Look for Akron’s passing game to take advantage of the Hoosiers and send them back home with a loss.

A Big Ten team losing to a MAC team? This is your best bet this week.

Prediction: Akron 24, Indiana 17

Michigan State (1-1) @ Notre Dame (1-1)
3:30 PM, NBC

The Spartans have had some success in South Bend in their last few trips down south, but that streak could be in jeopardy this weekend. Quarterback Jimmy Clausen has put up some good stats the Charlie Weis system and that could cause problems for the Spartans this week. If Michigan State is going to win they will have to get their offense on track because Notre Dame’s defense is nothing to write home about.

As much as I want to lean toward the Spartans this week, I am going with the Irish in a bounce back game.

Prediction: Notre Dame wins 24-17

(2-0) @ Syracuse (0-2)
7:00 PM, ESPN360

The Orange return home after putting up a bit of a fight last week in Beaver Stadium. While Syracuse is holding an 0-2 record, with both losses coming to Big Ten teams, I think they break that losing streak with a win at home against Northwestern. The Wildcats are 2-0 but they have beaten Towson from the FCS and barely beat Eastern Michigan last week. After watching Syracuse last week I see a winning mentality is in place. Now they just need to pick up that first win.

Prediction: Syracuse wins 20-14

Iowa (2-0) vs. Arizona (2-0)
3:35 PM, ABC

Not to be too overshadowed by the Minnesota-California game, Iowas will play an intriguing game against another PAC 10 opponent when Arizona comes to town. Both teams are dark horses in their respective conferences and both teams are capable of winning this game. Penn State fans will be extra interested in this game as the Nittany Lions welcome Iowa to Beaver Stadium in a prime time game next Saturday.

Arizona’s running game could cause problems for Arizona but the teams have very similar stats in overall offense and points scored. The question is which Iowa team will show up; week one Iowa or week two Iowa?

Expect some points to be scored in this one, but look for Iowa to go 3-0.

Prediction: Iowa wins 31-28

Illinois is off this week.

Oh, and as for Penn State…

Penn State (2-0) vs. Temple (0-1)

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  • Mitch Tanner

    I agree with you on most of them except Michigan State. If last week was any reflection that this team is still the John L Smith Spartans, they will come out and romp Notre Dame this saturday.

  • Mitch Tanner

    I agree with you on most of them except Michigan State. If last week was any reflection that this team is still the John L Smith Spartans, they will come out and romp Notre Dame this saturday.