clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

OTB Roundtable: Which Big Ten Football Game Are You Watching?

Rutgers is on a bye this weekend, so our staff discusses which conference game is worth watching instead.

Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

Dave White: There's college football this weekend?  Please, I'll be scouring social media for Rutgers hoops practice reports.

Aaron Breitman: This is the best match-up in the conference this weekend, as it could shape the race for the Big Ten West title with undefeated Iowa heading to Wisconsin. Iowa hasn't beaten any world beaters, but has a solid win over PITT and finally beat rival Iowa State.  It is their first 4-0 start since 2009 and quarterback CJ Beathard is off to a great start.  Running back Jordan Canzeri leads the Big Ten with eight touchdowns. Since Wisconsin's loss to Alabama, they have given up just three points total in convincing wins Miami (OH), Troy and Hawaii.  However, top running back Corey Clement is out for 4-6 weeks after sports hernia surgery, so their offense is less than full force.  Backup Taiwan Deal has performed well and was named Big Ten Freshman of the Week after rushing for 146 yards and 2 touchdowns against Hawaii.  Doing that in a conference battle against Iowa is a different story.  I think this will be a great, back and forth, classic Big Ten battle.  I think the loss of Clement catches up with Wisconsin and the Kirk Ferentz comeback tour continues. Iowa pulls the upset 31-27

Bob Cancro: Actually, I won't be watching any of them since I'll be on the field in stripes in western PA. But if I could watch....

I agree with Aaron that Iowa-Wisconsin is the best match up.  So let's ignore that and go for interest on other levels.  Army at PSU is interesting.  Army and Penn State haven't met since 1979, with the Nitts holding a 13-10-2 record against Army West Point, which, by the way, is the new "brand" for Army football.  Biggest question on "Military Appreciation Day" at Beaver Stadium: how will students treat Cadets?  Will there be chants of Army sucks? or, well, you know.  Probably not.  But that's still not the game I'd watch.

Michigan at Maryland is my game.  For a lot of reasons.  First, Maryland sucks and must be crushed.  The Twerps beat UM last year - won't happen this year.  Harbaugh will not allow it.  Nor will Edsall.  Second, like it or not, RU fans, we are gauging ourselves against the Twerps.  So let's see what they got against the Fighting Harbaughs...or Khakis...or whatever you want to call them.  The game was moved to noon in anticipation of horrific weather from Joaquin....which will be nothing compared to the beat down the Wolverines will impose on Maryland.  Because of the weather, the Maryland Pride fans won't turn out well, and will be over run by the 10,000 loonies in Maize and Blue who will stay til the bitter end, singing "Hail to the Victors" after every score, which could be every 7-8 minutes.  Michigan 42 Maryland 7

Kelly Montagna: Maybe its a front-runner opinion, but I cannot wait to watch the top ranked Buckeyes travel into Hoosierland and go up against the 4-0 Indiana team. There's no soap opera, must see tv entertainment better than Ohio State, but I'm actually expecting Indiana to hold their own against the defending champs. Leading the charge for the Hoosiers is the nation's leading rusher in RB Jordan Howard, who has 675 yards on 111 carries. The Buckeyes' typically stout defense has been struggling particularly with their interior run defense, as they have allowed 121.8 rushing yards per game. Look for Howard to put up huge numbers this weekend, but in the end, I expect Cardale Jones and OSU to pull out the victory, as he'll be able to expose Indiana's young secondary. OSU 45-38

Griffin Whitmer: I'll be gone for most of the day, and when I get home I'll be switching between Clemson/Notre Dame and Florida/Ole Miss. However, for the premier academic and athletic conference in the country, I'll be most interested to see how Northwestern/Minnesota turns out. Both teams are defensive minded and low-scoring. Northwestern has a top-5 scoring defense but a scoring offense tied for 92nd in the country. Minnesota has yet to win a game by more than 3 points and those wins all came against mediocre mid-major teams. Their defense was elite against TCU and should do a fine job against Northwestern's offense. However, I think Northwestern is the better team here. Northwestern 13-10

Scott Logan: Purdue-Michigan State. Misery loves company, and maybe the beatdown Sparty lays on Purdue will make us feel better about what's to come for us next week.

In all seriousness, I'll be keeping an eye on Army-Penn State, if for no other reason than to get an idea of how we'll stack up with the Black Knights when Rutgers visits West Point next month. Despite being 1-3, Army has only lost its games by a combined 10 points, so they've at least shown signs of competitiveness. However, I think Penn State will be too much for them. Anthony Zettel and the PSU d-line overpowers Army's undersized offensive line, stifling the Black Knights' offense. After struggling against San Diego State, the Penn State running game comes back to life. The Nittany Lions pick up the first of hopefully two Big Ten wins against Army this season. Penn State 34, Army 10

Andy Egan: I think Northwestern/Minnesota will be a really interesting game to watch. Northwestern is a contender in the West until somebody knocks them down. The Gophers bring a very tough defense and a decent running game to the table. As Griffin mentioned, this is going to come down to whose defense is better, as B1G football should. Gophers 21, Wildcats 18.

Ray Ransom: While I do love college football, I really don't see myself enjoying it too much with Dear Old Rutgers on the sidelines. That said, I am enjoying a little bit how godawful Maryland is. I know, I know, we're trying to be better sports around these parts. That said, if you can't take a little bit of joy in watching a rival getting taken to the woodshed every once in a while, you just might not be alive. It reminds me of a song actually...