Ohio State Buckeyes: Derek Watt
Brackets are out. Who ya got? I'll be in Milwaukee for hoops duty later this week. Excited to check out Michigan, Wisconsin and others.
To the links ...
To the links ...
- An excellent guide to Penn State's spring practice, which kicks off later today. Five key questions for the Lions entering the spring. A good look at Penn State's athletic budget.
- Nebraska is building depth at running back this spring. Huskers defensive end Greg McMullen is moving into a leading role.
- Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany discusses various topics with colleague Ivan Maisel.
- Freshman LB Raekwon McMillan is already impressing teammates at Ohio State.
- Michigan's offensive line competition continues to unfold this spring. Football continues to carry Michigan's profitable athletic department.
- A group of Rutgers players is headed to Haiti to rebuild houses, churches and schools.
- Wisconsin FB Derek Watt will have a bigger role in the passing game this fall.
- Minnesota must play catch-up in the facilities race.
September, 11, 2013
By Brian Bennett | ESPN.com
- Tim Beckman, a former Oklahoma State assistant, said he was shocked by the Sports Illustrated allegations about the Cowboys program. There is optimism now around Illinois.
- Indiana freshmen are getting acclimated on defense. Hoosiers cornerback Tim Bennett plays bigger than his size (subscription required).
- Dropped passes have stung Iowa. Videos from the Hawkeyes media session. The Cy-Hawk game usually fizzles rather than sizzles, Pat Harty writes.
- Michigan's Kyle Kalis got some advice from his hero. Greg Mattison and Brady Hoke want better play from their defensive line. The young Wolverines defense is learning fast.
- Joe Rexrode predicts Damion Terry will be starting at QB for Michigan State by October. Delton Williams and Gerald Holmes are likely to redshirt for the Spartans, while DeAnthony Arnett has tumbled down the depth chart. Mark Dantonio's desperation is evident in his quarterback decisions, Graham Couch writes.
- Minnesota quarterback Philip Nelson is trying to balance the risk and reward of running the ball. Gophers corner Briean Boddy-Calhoun is lost for the season with an ACL. Receiver Logan Hutton earned his first start because of his blocking.
- Urban Meyer is looking for more yards out of Philly Brown. One day changed everything for Ohio State backup QB Kenny Guiton. The Buckeyes will have to deal with Cal's spread offense.
- Nebraska's offense is looking to finish vs. UCLA. Zaire Anderson is likely to get an expanded role against the Bruins. Third down defense will be large for the Huskers.
- The frenzy around Northwestern football is deserved and earned, Rick Telander writes. Some Wildcats practice notes.
- Penn State season tickets are down, but the STEP program is being called a success. Ralph Friedgen knows Bill O'Brien and UCF coach George O'Leary better than anybody, and he talks about both of them to David Jones. The Nittany Lions' pass-catchers outside of Allen Robinson are sorting themselves out.
- Purdue's MVP so far might be Cody Webster, who's leading the nation in punting. Anthony Brown is likely to take injured safety Landon Feichter's spot. Darrell Hazell is looking for more touchdowns.
- Wisconsin's running game looks pretty much the same with a new coaching staff. Linebacker Chris Borland leads by example. Injured fullback Derek Watt hopes to play at Arizona State.
Happy Sea Serpent Day.
- Nathan Scheelhaase is still the leader of the pack for Illinois. The Illini tight ends are progressing.
- Indiana uses a platoon system to build accountability. The Hoosiers got a visit from Jim Delany (subscription required). Tom Dienhart has some thoughts from IU's practice on Tuesday.
- A closer look at Iowa's offensive line. A former Hawkeye is running for the U.S. Senate.
- Blake Countess is happy to be back from his torn ACL and hoping to start again for Michigan. Taylor Lewan still gets nervous at the start of camp. Cam Gordon is ready for a shot at filling Jake Ryan's shoes. Freshman running back Derrick Green weighed in at 240 pounds.
- Riley Bullough and Nick Hill are earning the most first-team reps at tailback for Michigan State so far. The Spartans' defense is not fat and happy, Pat Narduzzi says. A linebacker position battle is a matter of keeping up with the Joneses.
- Damien Wilson came to Minnesota highly recommended by former NFL coach Ray Perkins, and he looks to fill a hole at linebacker. Lineman Josh Campion kept the faith through a series of obstacles because he badly wanted to be a Gopher.
- Jason Ankrah is embracing a leadership role for Nebraska. Juco import Randy Gregory impressed despite his rustiness. Huskers tight end Jake Long and backup QB Tommy Armstrong will miss some time with injuries.
- Collin Ellis and Drew Smith are waging a battle for one of Northwestern's starting linebacker jobs. The Wildcats' strength and agility training methods are starting to show up.
- Buckeyes lineman Marcus Hall has slimmed down and needs a belt now. Taylor Decker is the final piece of the Ohio State offensive line puzzle.
- Penn State commit Jared Wangler is still considering Michigan. A look at five Nittany Lions who have to stay healthy this year. There are no guarantees in the PSU quarterback race.
- Purdue receiver Danny Anthrop missed the spring but has emerged as one of the team's top receiving options. The Boilers' defense seems to have the upper hand early. Some more Purdue practice notes.
- Wisconsin tight end Brock DeCicco has played for seven head coaches in his career. Derek Watt added 15 pounds and hopes to be a better blocker at fullback. Some more Badgers practice observations.
- CBSSports.com makes its 2013 Big Ten predictions. Jim Delany talks about pay for play and and the use of players' likenesses.
November, 17, 2012
By Adam Rittenberg | ESPN.com
MADISON, Wis. -- Wisconsin running back Montee Ball's highlight tape of touchdowns might as well be a full-length feature. He entered Saturday with 77, one shy of the FBS all-time record.
Unfortunately for Ball, Ohio State linebacker Ryan Shazier watched most of the movie in the week leading up to Saturday's game.
"He scores plenty of touchdowns," Shazier said. "I watched film on him, and I saw when he gets around the [1- or 2-yard line], he likes to jump. So once he jumped, I jumped, and I punched the ball out."
Shazier's forced fumble against Ball late in the fourth quarter -- just the second lost fumble in Ball's record-setting career -- ended up not meaning much. Wisconsin scored on its next possession to tie the game before Ohio State went on to win 21-14 in overtime.
But Shazier's play epitomized Ohio State's victory, one fueled by defense with a sprinkle of special teams, thanks to Corey "Philly" Brown.
Braxton Miller won't be on "SportsCenter" tonight, but Shazier should be. So should defensive end John Simon, who tied a career high with four sacks. So should cornerback Bradley Roby, who had to cover two players after a teammate blew an assignment and batted down a sure-fire touchdown catch by Derek Watt.
The silver bullets stood tall at Camp Randall Stadium, helping Ohio State secure a Leaders Division title, maintain a perfect 11-0 record and set up a chance for perfection in The Game next week against Michigan.
"Our offense kind of struggled a little bit, but at the same time, it's a team sport, so the defense, we needed to go out and do our thing," said Roby, who wore a Leaders Division championship T-shirt. "Defense wins championships. We thrive on that."