MONDAY HUDDLE: Is Michigan back on track after Iowa win?
5 takeaways from this weekend's football scene around the state
Here are five takeaways from this past weekend's football action around the state. The Lions had a bye.
State of the Wolverines after win over Iowa
For the time being, Michigan avoided a second loss that would have brought further outrage and increased calls for Jim Harbaugh's job.
While Iowa's offense won't ever be confused for Ohio State or Alabama's, the U-M defense did dominate by forcing four turnovers and registering eight sacks in a 10-3 victory.
The offense was a different story, though, with a poor performance that is this week's source of angst among fans.
In light of that, Saturday's opponent couldn't be any better for the Wolverines and should offer perfect medicine for their issues on offense.
Michigan will travel to Illinois, which lost at home to Eastern Michigan (34-31) earlier in the year and has given up 78 points over the last two games in losses to Nebraska and Minnesota.
The Fighting Illini will also feature a familiar face, starting quarterback Brandon Peters, who this time two years ago was being hailed as the savior of Michigan's quarterback woes by some fans when he won the starting job.
But that didn't last long after Peters eventually got injured.
Shea Patterson then transferred in, and Peters after last season transferred out to Illinois.
State of the Spartans after loss to Ohio State
There wasn't a lot of shame in losing to an Ohio State juggernaut that might be the best team in the country at the moment, but as a result MSU has arrived at a crossroads for this season, and possibly for Mark Dantonio's tenure following a 34-10 loss in Columbus.
MSU is a senior-dominated team that simply didn't have the talent or depth to keep up with the Buckeyes, and there's potential for things to really go south now with games at Wisconsin on Saturday and home against Penn State on Oct. 19 following a bye week.
If MSU can recover to win both, then it can keep things afloat and still possibly be in the Rose Bowl conversation, especially if Ohio State makes the College Football Playoff.
Lose both or arguably even one, then the possibility of a four or five-loss season becomes reality for a team with high expectations all offseason.
A rebuilding season likely will be in store for next year with all the roster attrition, which will then raise questions whether Dantonio and his staff will be around for it or just retire.
This is a critical time for both the short-term and long-term health of the MSU program.
What's going on with Jayru Campbell?
All seemed right with Ferris State quarterback Jayru Campbell, last season's Harlon Hill Trophy winner (equivalent of Heisman Trophy in Division II) who led the Bulldogs to the national championship game, in the second game of the season when he returned from offseason shoulder surgery and played well.
But now, it looks like there's more drama surrounding Campbell, a talented but troubled alum of Detroit Cass Tech who got a scholarship offer from Michigan State rescinded and served jail time after body- slamming a security guard in the halls of Cass Tech while a student there.
Campbell hasn't played over the last two games, and Ferris State head coach Tony Annese told the Detroit News the reason was "health issues."
That is as specific as officials at Ferris State have gotten, and speculation is rampant that more is going on.
Campbell returned to practice last week, but didn't play in Saturday's home game against Davenport and reportedly wasn't on the sideline with the team despite being seen walking into the stadium before kickoff.
Despite Campbell's absence, the No. 2-ranked Bulldogs keep winning.
Ferris State beat Davenport 35-7 to improve to 5-0 on the year behind quarterbacks Travis Russell and Evan Cummins, who both have seen game action.
Central Michigan gets win in other rivalry game
Central Michigan lost one rivalry game at Western Michigan on Sept. 28, but responded a week later at home against its other in-state rival with a 42-16 win over Eastern Michigan.
Behind 205 all-purpose yards (132 rushing, 73 receiving) and three touchdowns from running back Jonathan Ward, the Chippewas amassed 589 yards of offense against an EMU squad that won at Illinois earlier in the season.
Long preps streak ends
Ithaca, which every year is a state power among smaller high schools, entered last Friday's game against Hemlock with a 66-game conference winning streak within the Tri-Valley West and was ranked No. 1 in the state in Division 6.
It had also outscored Hemlock by a score of 142-21 in three previous meetings.
But that didn't matter to Hemlock, which produced a stunning 30-6 win over Ithaca to end that 66-game conference winning streak.
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