Nov. 6, 2011
[ONE // saturday shakedown]
Big Ten football fielded five contests on Saturday, with several of them ending in upsets or near-upsets. Northwestern traveled to Lincoln and knocked off No. 9 Nebraska 28-25, behind Kain Colter’s three touchdowns. Iowa held off a late-rally by No. 13 Michigan and stunned the Wolverines 24-16, thanks in large part to Marcus Coker’s 132 rushing yards. Michigan State was taken to the limits by Minnesota, trailing 24-21 after three quarters, before holding off the Golden Gophers 31-24 late in the came. Indiana was also upset-minded, jumping out to a 10-0 advantage at Ohio State, sitting tied with the Buckeyes at 20-20, but fell late 34-20 in Columbus. In other action, Montee Ball rushed for a career-high 223 yards with three touchdowns to help Wisconsin past Purdue, 62-17.
[TWO // big ten mobile tour heads to east lansing]
A week after the Big Ten’s Honoring Legends. Building Leaders. Mobile Tour visited Minneapolis, the Big Ten’s big bus followed the Gophers to East Lansing for the Michigan State-Minnesota matchup. MSU's Brittany McCormick took over the MobileTour blog, Twitter account and YouTube page while the tour was in East Lansing, snapped several great photos, and posted a number of resourceful posts over the week. Stops were made at the Union, including the Dairy Store where every Big Ten school is represented in an ice cream flavor, as well as the Breslin Center to visit with Tom Izzo while he was watching to the Spartans women’s basketball team compete. The Tour also stopped off at the Brody Complex, and of course, Spartan Stadium for Saturday’s big matchup. For a complete recap of the Tour in East Lansing, click here.
[THREE // illini fight their way to women’s soccer tournament title]
No. 2 Illinois earned a 2-1 overtime win over No. 1 Penn State to claim its second Big Ten Women’s Soccer Tournament title on Sunday. Tied 1-1 in overtime, Fighting Illini sophomore Vanessa DiBernardo scored the game-winner to lead Illinois to the tournament crown. Illinois' Jackie Molinda recorded a goal in the fifth minute, while Penn State's Maya Hayes scored the lone Nittany Lion goal in the 33rd. The 2011 All-Tournament squad consisted of Illinois’ DiBernardo, Marissa Mykines, and Stephanie Panozzo, Iowa’s Emily Moran, Michigan State’s Jill Fliestra, Minesota’s Shari Eckstrom, Northwestern’s Nicole Jewell, Ohio State’s Danielle Scoliere, Penn State’s Jess Rosenbluth and Emma Thomson, and Wisconsin’s Megan Flannery. Illinois’ Mykines and Panozzo earned Offensive and Defensive Player of the Tournament honors, respectively. Click here to visit tournament cental!
[FOUR // illini earn half of postseason women’s soccer awards]
The Big Ten announced its 2011 women's soccer All-Big Ten teams and individual award winners on Tuesday, with conference runner-up Illinois collecting three of the six individual honors. The Fighting Illini's Vanessa DiBernardo was named Midfielder of the Year, Jenna Carosio took home Defender of the Year honors, and Janet Rayfield earned Coach of the Year accolades. Penn State's Maya Hayes was named Forward of the Year, while Wisconsin's Michele Dalton earned Goalkeeper of the Year honors. Minnesota's Taylor Uhl took home the Freshman of the Year award. In addition to the complete All-Conference teams, 12 honorees were named for the Sportsmanship Award. For a complete look at all 2011 honorees, click here.
[FIVE // penn state tops michigan for field hockey tournament title]
Congratulations to the Penn State field hockey team, which captured the Big Ten Tournament title on Sunday with a 3-2 win over top-seeded Michigan. The third-ranked Nittany Lions scored the lone goal of the second half off the stick of Taylor Herold. Penn State earned a bid in the title game after a 1-0 shutout over No. 2 Ohio State, while Michigan advanced following a 4-1 victory over No. 4 Iowa. For a complete look at tournament action, click here.
[SIX // four schools earn postseason field hockey honors]
The Big Ten announced its 2011 field hockey All-Big Ten teams and individual award winners on Thursday, with Michigan, Northwestern, Ohio State and Penn State collecting individual honors. The Wildcats’ Chelsea Armstrong was named Offensive Player of the Year, while the Buckeyes’ Jenn Sciulli took home Defensive Player of the Year honors. The Nittany Lions’ Laura Gebhart was named Freshman of the Year, while the Wolverines’ Marcia Pankratz earned Coach of the Year honors. Armstrong, Sciulli and Gebhart earned spots on the All-Big Ten first team and were joined by Indiana’s Brenna Moeljadi, Iowa’s Jessica Barnett and Sarah Drake, Michigan’s Bryn Bain, Aline Fobe and Rachael Mack, Northwestern’s Nikki Parsley and Penn State’s Kelsey Amy and Ayla Halus. The Big Ten also recognized seven Sportsmanship Award honorees.
[SEVEN // northwestern claims men’s soccer title, tournament bracket released]
Northwestern clinched the 2011 Big Ten Championship, it’s first in program history, after earning its fourth conference win of the season in a 1-0 victory on Saturday against Michigan. The Wildcats went undefeated in six Big Ten matches this season, posting a 4-0-2 record. After winning the conference crown on Saturday, Northwestern earned the No. 1 seed and an automatic spot in the semifinals of the 2011 Big Ten Men’s Soccer Tournament. The tournament will be held on the Michigan campus in Ann Arbor, Mich., with opening-round matchups played on Wednesday, semifinal games on Friday and the championship match on Sunday. The tournament winner will earn the Big Ten’s automatic berth to the NCAA Championship. Other teams in the Big Ten Tournament bracket include No. 2 Ohio State, No. 3 Wisconsin, No. 4 Indiana, No. 5 Michigan State, No. 6 Michigan, and No. 7 Penn State.
[EIGHT // michigan state and wisconsin earn men’s cross country awards]
The Big Ten announced its individual award winners for men’s cross country on Tuesday. Wisconsin’s Mohammed Ahmed earned Big Ten Athlete of the Year honors, while Badger head coach Mick Byrne reeled in his fourth consecutive Coach of the Year award and Michigan State’s David Madrigal was named Freshman of the Year. Ahmed’s award marks the 11th Athlete of the Year honor in Wisconsin history and the second in as many years as fellow Badger Landon Peacock earned the honor a year ago. After guiding Wisconsin to its 13th consecutive and 45th overall Big Ten title, Byrne collects his fourth straight Coach of the Year award. Madrigal is the fourth Michigan State runner to earn the award all-time and the first since Steve Padgett in 2000. The Big Ten also recognized 11 Sportsmanship Award honorees, which can be found by clicking here.
[NINE // four schools take home women’s cross country postseason awards]
Also on Tuesday, the individual Big Ten women’s cross country awards were announced. Penn State’s Caitlin Lane took home top honors as the conference’s Athlete of the Year. Michigan State’s Walt Drenth earned Coach of the Year laurels, while Michigan’s Taylor Pogue and Wisconsin’s Gabrielle Anzalone were named Co-Freshmen of the Year. Lane is the third Nittany Lion to earn Athlete of the Year honors and the second to win it in the last three years. Drenth’s award marks the third in Michigan State history, while Pogue is the seventh Michigan runner to win the award and Anzalone earned the eighth honor in Wisconsin history and the fourth in the last six years. The Big Ten also recognized 12 Sportsmanship Award honorees, which can be found by clicking here.
[TEN // wrestling season opens; national poll released]
Big Ten wrestling started a new season this past weekend, with seven teams opening their 2011-12 schedules on Saturday. Six squads kicked off the campaign at open tournaments, while Northwestern competed in the first dual of the season, downing No. 14 Stanford, 27-8, in Chicago. Illinois began the season at the Loras Open in Dubuque, Iowa, while Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State and Purdue traveled to the Eastern Michigan Open in Ypsilanti, Mich., on Saturday. Earlier in the week, seven Big Ten wrestling teams were ranked in the preseason NWCA/USA Today Division I Coaches Poll, with five squads appearing in the top 10. Defending Big Ten and national champion Penn State earned the No. 1 ranking entering the season, while Iowa debuted at No. 2. Minnesota checked in at No. 4, while Michigan held No. 7 and Illinois followed at No. 8. Ohio State began the season ranked 13th, while Northwestern rounded out the group of ranked Big Ten teams at No. 19. Michigan State, Nebraska and Purdue each received votes entering the season.
[ELEVEN // basketball teams honored in national polls]
Five Big Ten teams received votes, including three in the top 25, in the preseason ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll, which was released on Tuesday. Penn State, ranked No. 12 in the AP poll, appears at No. 14 in the coaches poll, while Purdue checks in at No. 19 in the coaches poll after debuting at No. 17 in the AP poll. Michigan State, which had been receiving votes in the AP rankings, rounds out the top 25. Ohio State and Iowa are among the other squads also receiving votes in the debut poll of the 2011-12 season. On the men’s side, the Buckeyes are ranked No. 3 in the AP's preseason poll, while Wisconsin is No. 15. Michigan is also ranked in the top 25, coming in at No. 18. Michigan State, Purdue, Illinois and Minnesota are all receiving at least one vote outside the poll.
[TWELVE // big ten student-athletes earn national honors]
Finally, a tip of the cap to several Big Ten student-athletes, who earned national honors this past week. Seven basketball players were named as Senior CLASS Award candidates, as Michigan's Zack Novak, Michigan State's Draymond Green, Ohio State's William Buford, Purdue's Robbie Hummel and Wisconsin's Jordan Taylor were honored on the men’s side, while Nebraska's Kaitlyn Burke and Purdue's Brittany Rayburn were selected on the women’s side. Staying on the hardwood, Ohio State's Jared Sullinger and Wisconsin's Jordan Taylor were named preseason first-team All-Americans, the Associated Press announced on Monday. In volleyball, Purdue junior Ariel Turner was named the Sports Imports/AVCA Division I Player of the Week. On the gridiron, Nebraska Linebacker Lavonte David was named the Lott IMPACT Player of the Week, Drake Dunsmore of Northwestern was named John Mackey Tight End of the Week, while Michigan State's Arthur Ray Jr. was the weekly nominee for the 2011 Discover Orange Bowl/FWAA Courage Award.