Week Five of Conference Play Kicks off on Saturday

Oct. 21, 2005

Michigan (4-3, 2-2 Big Ten) @ Iowa (5-2, 3-1 Big Ten), ABC Sports, 11:00 AM CT
In a game that may have implications in this year's Big Ten Championship race, Michigan State travels to Iowa City to take on Kirk Ferentz and the Hawkeyes. The Wolverines will hope to use last Saturday's last second victory over Penn State as momentum to carry them through the rest of the regular season. In that victory, Michigan was led by tailback Michael Hart, who ran for 108 yards and a touchdown, and Chad Henne, who threw for 212 yards and two touchdowns with no turnovers. Freshman receiver Mario Manningham was also a major factor with his two touchdown grabs, including the game-winner.

Meanwhile, Drew Tate threw for two touchdowns and Albert Young ran for another as Iowa beat Indiana to remain tied at the top of the Big Ten leader board. The Hawkeyes' 3-1 conference record is the same as it was last year at this point, when then won their final eight games to earn a share of the Big Ten title with Michigan.

Wolverine coach Lloyd Carr will be looking for his 100th win on Saturday, while Iowa's next victory will make the Hawkeyes eligible for a post-season bowl berth. Michigan leads the overall series 38-10-4, dating all the way back to 1900. Kickoff of the latest installment is set for 11:00 a.m., and will be broadcast live on ABC Sports.

No. 13/14 Ohio State (4-2, 2-1 Big Ten) @ Indiana (4-2, 1-2), ESPN Plus, 11:00 AM EST/CDT
Ohio State travels to Indiana for the first of two straight road games coming off a win over Michigan State at home. The Buckeyes overcame a 17-7 deficit against the Spartans, shutting down their high powered offense behind the efforts of linebacker Bobby Carpenter, who earned Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week honors. On special teams, Ashton Youboty blocked two field goals and returned one for a touchdown to secure the win.

At the same time, Indiana was on the road in Iowa City facing off against the Hawkeyes, who are tied for first in the Big Ten. Freshman James Hardy led the Hoosier offense with 12 catches for over 200 yards at Iowa, accounting for most of sophomore quarterback Blake Powers' 360 passing yards. Powers is currently second in the nation in touchdown passes this season with 20 heading into Saturday's game, which also set an Indiana single-season record with five games to go.

Indiana will try to remain undefeated at home in 2005, while Ohio State will look to continue its 12-game win streak against the Hoosiers dating back to 1990. Game time is set for 11:00 a.m. on ESPN Plus.

Northwestern (4-2, 2-1 Big Ten) at No. 22 Michigan State (4-2, 1-2 Big Ten), ESPN2 12:00 AM ET
No. 22 Michigan State is at home this weekend, hosting Northwestern. Michigan State scored early against Ohio State weekend, but that wasn't enough to hold onto to a 10-point lead in Columbus. Spartan quarterback Drew Stanton is leading his offense to almost 42 points per game, while also leading the conference in passing efficiency. Despite being sacked 12 times by Ohio State, Stanton and the offense managed to post over 450 yards on the day against a strong Buckeye defense.

Stanton's 322 total yards per game is second in the Big Ten only to Northwestern's Brett Basanez, who is averaging over 350 total yards per game to go along with the Wildcats 528.7 yards of total offense. Basanez, who has led his offense to over 600 yards in each of the past two games, has garnered Offensive Player of the Week honors each time. The Wildcats also won both of those games in come-from-behind fashion, at home against Wisconsin two weeks ago, and at Purdue last Saturday.

Michigan State and Northwestern have not faced each other since 2002, and will rekindle their rivalry at 11:00 a.m. on ESPN2 from Evanston.

Purdue (2-4, 0-3) @ No. 19/17 Wisconsin (6-1, 3-1), ABC Sports, 2:30 PM CT

Purdue has a lot on the line Saturday at Wisconsin. The Boilermakers are traveling to Madison, where ninth year head coach Joe Tiller will try to ruin Wisconsin's homecoming and rally his team for the remainder of the season to earn a bowl bid for the ninth time in his tenure. Purdue mounted a 20-point comeback last weekend against Northwestern, but couldn't quite hold on against the offensively powered Wildcats.

Wisconsin will try to build on momentum created in the waning seconds of its game at Minnesota last weekend. Freshman Jonathon Casillas blocked a punt that was recovered by Ben Strickland for the game-winning touchdown. That play by special teams overshadowed Brian Calhoun's three touchdown runs at Minnesota, which moved him into second in the country this season with 14. The Badgers are also riding a 10-game win streak at home.

Camp Randall will be the host of this year's matchup, after the Badgers traveled to West Lafayette last October. ABC Sports will broadcast the game, which kicks off at 2:30 p.m.

No. 12/14 Penn State (6-1, 3-1 Big Ten) @ Illinois (2-4, 0-3), ESPN2, 6:00 PM CT
Penn State, who is tied for the Big Ten lead, will stay on the road this weekend in Illinois after a road loss to Michigan last week. Last week was the Nittany Lions' first loss of the 2005 season, and a game in with they also lost star freshman Derrick Williams for the season with a broken arm. They will attempt to rebound on Saturday evening at Memorial Stadium. Senior quarterback Michael Robinson has already gained 1,000 rushing and 1,000 yards passing in his career, and enters Saturday's game averaging over 250 yards of total offense this season.

The Illini have had a week of rest after a bye week, which should benefit them after a four-game skid. Coach Ron Zook, in his first year with Illinois, says that in college football, teams "hate to play a team that is coming off an off-week. They're a faster, completely different team." Zook hopes the bye, coupled with the homecoming atmosphere will be enough to upset the No. 12/No. 14 Lions and earn his first Big Ten win.

Kickoff for the game, the first between the two since 2002, is set for 6:00 p.m. on ESPN2.