Big Ten football teams go 10-2 in out-of-conference games on opening weekend
DETROIT – The Big Ten was represented well in the first weekend of college football.
The conference went 10-2 in out-of-conference games. The Ohio State-Indiana game was an odd in-conference start to the season in which the Buckeyes rolled past the Hoosiers, 49-21.
Here's a quick look at what the rest of the Big Ten did in week one:
W: Minnesota 17, Buffalo 7
Many might have expected a more lopsided score in favor of the the Golden Gophers, who went 9-4 last season with a Holiday Bowl win over Washington State. But the Gophers couldn't find the end zone after the 1st quarter Thursday against Buffalo.
A win is a win, as they say, but Minnesota will have to polish the offense a bit before facing a more formidable Oregon State team this weekend, in Oregon.
L: Rutgers 14, Washington 30
Washington proved to be too much for the Scarlet Knights on Friday. It was 27-7 at the start of the 4th quarter.
Rutgers has a chance to bounce back strong against Eastern Michigan this Saturday.
W: Wisconsin 59, Utah State 10
Wisconsin started slow but a massive 28 points in the 3rd quarter erased whatever hope Utah State had in this game. Alex Hornibrook threw three touchdown passes for the Badgers.
Up next for Wisconsin is Florida Atlantic. There is no doubt the Badgers will head into BYU with a 2-0 record.
W: Iowa 24, Wyoming 3
The Hawkeyes cruised to a victory in front of their home crowd with sophomore Nathan Stanley throwing three touchdown passes. It was Stanley's first start. He'll need all the confidence he can get before heading into hostile territory this weekend. That's right: The battle for the Cy-Hawk Trophy is Saturday in Ames.
W: Illinois 24, Ball State 21
Illinois had to come from behind in the 4th quarter and block a late field goal attempt to beat Ball State. Too close for comfort.
This could be another tough season for the Illini. They host Western Kentucky this week.
W: Penn State 52, Akron 0
Penn State is really good, and expectations are nothing short of a run at the Big Ten title. This matchup with Akron was nothing but a glorified practice. Everyone got to chip in on this beating -- the offense, defense, special teams ... probably the water boys.
We won't get to see the Nittany Lions really tested until conference play opens in Iowa. They'll host an underwhelming Pittsburgh team on Saturday.
W: Michigan State 35, Bowling Green 10
The Spartans had a shaky start with costly turnovers in their season opener against Bowling Green. However, the offense settled down by the 2nd half and sophomore QB Brian Lewerke showed some great signs of things to come. He threw for 250 yards and three touchdowns.
Mark Dantonio is trying to forget last season and charge ahead with a Michigan State program which became accustomed to fighting for a conference title. His Spartans have a big test next week against Western Michigan. The Broncos nearly knocked off USC.
W: Maryland 51, Texas 41
Maryland stunned everyone by walking into Texas and putting up 51 points for the win. Tyrrell Pigrome threw for 175 yards and two touchdowns. He also ran for 64 yards and another score for Maryland before suffering a knee injury. He was out of the game in the 4th but true freshman backup Kasim Hill stepped up and helped the Terrapins complete the road win.
Look out Big Ten -- Maryland is ready. They host Towson on Saturday.
W: Northwestern 31, Nevada 20
Junior quarterback Clayton Thorson had two touchdown runs to help Northwestern come from behind and knock off visiting Nevada, 31-20. It was a nice team win, as coaches like to say. They'll have to be sharper this week as they travel to Duke.
W: Michigan 33, Florida 17
This game ended up matching the hype. While it was a bit sloppy for both offenses who kept turning over the ball, Jim Harbaugh's boys in maize stood strong and found a way to pull away.
Harbaugh used both quarterbacks Wilton Speight and John O'Korn. It's unclear if he'll do the same this Saturday against Cincinnati. He keeps everyone guessing.
L: Purdue 28, Louisville 35
Purdue had the lead at the half, but fell apart in the 3rd quarter. Lousville's Lamar Jackson was too much for the Boilermakers to contain. He completed 30 of 46 passes for 378 yards and two touchdowns and rushed 21 times for 107 yards.
Yikes. That's how you win the Heisman Trophy.
Up next for Purdue is Ohio -- the University of Ohio.
W: Nebraska 42, Arkansas 36
Nebraska would probably like a better score than that, but they turned a sloppy game into a win nonetheless. The Cornhuskers will have to defend the passing game better before league play starts up -- they allowed Arkansas State 415 passing yards.
Nebraska faces Oregon this Saturday. This could be a nice statement game for the Cornhuskers and the Big Ten if they can improve this week.
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