Dec. 22, 2005
Big Ten Champion Penn State dropped a 3-1 decision to the 11th-ranked Creighton Bluejays on Nov. 27 in sweet 16 action of the NCAA Championship. The loss in the third round at Jeffery Field ended the Nittany Lions' run towards the 2005 College Cup while halting their 10-game winning streak, their longest since 1992. The Bluejays advanced to the quaterfinals but fell to Clemson, 1-0.
Penn State's road to the third round included a first-round bye and second round victory over Seton Hall, 2-1. After starting off the 2005 campaign with a dismal 0-4-1 record the Nittany Lions began an unprecedented turnaround, going 6-0-0 against conference opponents and claiming the Big Ten regular season championship. They went on to defeat defending national champion Indiana for the second time in one season, setting a school record, to claim the third Big Ten Championship in school history. PSU ended the year with a 13-7-2 overall record, winning 11 consecutive games before falling to Creighton in its 10th NCAA Championship appearance. This was a historic season for the Nittany Lions as their regular season and Big Ten Championships marks the first time in program history they have achieved both titles in the same year.
Indiana entered the NCAA Championship as the No. 3 seed and was also awarded a first-round bye but saw its hopes for a three-peat national title dwindle as the Hoosiers wrapped up their run for the College Cup with a 2-0 loss to Notre Dame in the second round. IU ended the season with an overall mark of 13-3-6 while leading the Big Ten with 159 points, 54 goals, 51 assists and 13 shutouts in all games.
Ohio State, making its fourth NCAA appearance fell to Santa Clara, 1-0, in first round action on Nov. 18. The Broncos then suffered a 5-4, penalty kick, loss to seventh-seeded California in second round action. The Buckeyes end the year with an 11-8-2 record and are now 2-4 in NCAA post-season competition.
Several Big Ten student-athletes were honored with postseason awards, including Indiana's Brian Plotkin who was named a finalist for the Men's 2005 Missouri Athletic Club's Hermann Trophy, the highest individual honor in intercollegiate soccer. The senior midfielder will travel to St. Louis, Mo., on Jan. 6, 2006 for the announcement of the winner. Plotkin was also one of four men's soccer players selected to the 2005 NSCAA/adidas Men's Division I All-America Team, as was named to the first team. Michigan State's Ryan McMahen received second team honors, while Hooisers Jed Zayner and Jacob Peterson garnered third team accolades. Indiana's Chris Munroe and Penn State's Conrad Taylor represented the league on the ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America Teams as the Munroe was a first team selection and Taylor nabbed second team honors.
Indiana, Michigan State and Wisconsin are the only Big Ten teams to have won NCAA Championship titles. The Hoosiers have claimed back-to-back titles in 2003 and 2004 while the Spartans also won consecutive NCAA Championships in 1967 and 68. Indiana has won a total of seven titles and Wisconsin claimed its only title in 1995.