Around the Big Ten: Week 5

Audio/Story posted September 26, 2018 in CommRadio, Sports by Sports Staff

Joe Skinner, David Saggio, Chris Hess and Kyle Canillio preview this weekend's action in Big Ten football:



Week four around the Big Ten signaled the beginning of conference play for 10 teams as Ohio State, Northwestern, Purdue and Rutgers already played conference games earlier in the season. Ohio State and Rutgers were also the two teams that played their final non-conference games respectively before diving into the brunt of their conference schedules.

The Illinois Fighting Illini held a 24-21 lead over Penn State in the third quarter and it was shaping up to be a potential upset. The Nittany Lions then scored 42 unanswered points in the last 21 minutes and the Illini fell 63-24. Quarterback MJ Rivers went 17/28 for 149 yards, threw a touchdown pass and an interception. As a team the Illini rushed for 245 yards with an average of 5.4 yards per carry. Illinois will have its bye week during week five will welcome Rutgers to Champaign the following week.

Indiana’s late fourth-quarter surge put a scare into the Spartans of Michigan State. However, a late touchdown by Jalen Nailor gave Dantonio’s team a 35-21 lead and the Hoosiers ultimately dropped their first game of the season by that same score of 35-21. Quarterback Peyton Ramsey went 32/46 for 272 yards, two touchdown passes and two interceptions. Wide receiver Whoop Philyor had 13 receptions for 148 yards and found the end zone once on a 65-yard pass from Ramsey. The Hoosiers will host Rutgers for a noon battle this Saturday.

Iowa’s bid for another upset was denied as Wisconsin invaded Iowa City and the Hawkeyes fell to the Badgers 28-17. Quarterback Nathan Stanley went 14/23 for 256 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. TJ Hockenson had 125 yards receiving on three receptions and Noah Fant was on the receiving end of both touchdown passes from Stanley. Kirk Ferentz’s team will have a bye week then head to Minneapolis to take on Minnesota next week.

The Maryland Terrapins started off conference play with a dominant 42-13 win over the Minnesota Golden Gophers. Running backs Ty Johnson and Anthony McFarland combined for 235 yards on 17 carries and three touchdowns. DJ Turner scored on a 54-yard pass from quarterback Kasim Hill and it was Turner’s only reception of the game. The Terps will be idle during week five and then gear up for a bout with Michigan next week.

Michigan continued its dominance after an early season loss to Notre Dame by throttling Nebraska 56-10. Quarterback Shea Patterson went 15/22 for 120 yards and threw one touchdown pass. Karan Higdon rushed for 136 yards on 12 carries and scored once. The Wolverine defense held the Cornhuskers to 17 total yards in the first half and 132 total yards by the game’s end. Michigan will hit the road and head to Evanston to take on Northwestern at 4:30 p.m. Saturday.

Michigan State needed a touchdown from Jalen Nailor with just over three minutes to play to secure a 35-21 win over Indiana. Quarterback Brian Lewerke went 14/25 for 213 yards, threw two touchdown passes, while also throwing two interceptions. Kicker Matt Coghlin scored a touchdown on a fake field goal as he took an option pitch from Brian Lewerke to give the Spartans a 28-7 lead at one point. Mark Dantonio’s troops will host the Central Michigan Chippewas September 29 with kickoff scheduled for noon.

Minnesota’s conference opener for the second consecutive year ended in a loss at the hands of Maryland. The Golden Gophers fell 42-13 where it was tough sledding for the offense. Running back Mohamed Ibrahim rushed for only 95 yards on 26 carries and quarterback Zack Annexstad threw two interceptions. PJ Fleck’s team will look to rebound in as they will have an extra week to prepare for a visit from Iowa next week.

Scott Frost will have to wait another game for an opportunity to get his first win as Nebraska’s head coach as his team fell 56-10 at the hands of Michigan. The Cornhusker offense had only 132 total yards and racked up just 17 yards in the first half after falling behind 39-0 at halftime. Stanley Morgan Jr had three receptions for 61 yards and Wyatt Mazour had the lone touchdown for Nebraska. The Huskers will welcome Purdue to Lincoln for a 3:30 p.m. slugfest this week.

Northwestern was idle during week four and will be without starting running back Jeremy Larkin. The sophomore was diagnosed with cervical stenosis and the medical condition has forced him to retire. The Wildcats will host Jim Harbaugh’s Michigan Wolverines at Ryan Field for a 4:30 p.m. kickoff Saturday.

Ohio State continued its impressive run in the beginning of the season with a 49-6 demolition of Tulane. The Buckeyes led 42-6 at halftime behind yet another strong showing from quarterback Dwayne Haskins. The gunslinger went 21/24 for 304 yards and threw five touchdown passes. Parris Campbell had 147 yards receiving on eight receptions and found the end zone twice. The Buckeyes will travel to Beaver Stadium for a whiteout clash against Penn State Saturday at 7:30 p.m.

Penn State needed 42 unanswered points to pull away from Illinois as the Nittany Lions left Champaign with a 63-24 win. Running back Miles Sanders rushed for 200 yards on 22 carries and scored three times. As a team, Penn State ran for 387 yards and six touchdowns. Ricky Slade rushed for 94 yards and two touchdowns and Journey Brown scored once to give Penn State its final points. The Nittany Lions will play host to Ohio State at Beaver Stadium for the annual whiteout game on Saturday at 7:30 p.m with College Gameday returning for the second consecutive season.

Jeff Brohm and his Purdue Boilermakers were able to get their first win of 2018 by a score of 30-13 over Boston College. Quarterback David Blough went 21/28 for 296 yards and threw three touchdown passes. Freshman wide receiver Rondale Moore caught eight passes for 110 yards and scored twice. One of Moore’s touchdowns came on a 70-yard pitch and catch from Blough. The Boilermakers will travel to Lincoln to battle Scott Frost’s Nebraska team at 3:30 p.m. Saturday.

Chris Ash’s team dropped to 1-3 after yet another loss in non-conference play. The Scarlet Knights fell 42-13 to the Buffalo Bulls in a game where the Bulls were ahead 35-6 at halftime. Running back Raheem Blackshear score the lone Rutgers touchdown and the defense surrendered 445 total yards. Rutgers will travel to Bloomington for a date with Indiana at noon this week.

Fresh off of a loss to BYU, Wisconsin was able to avoid the upset trap at Iowa with a 28-17 win under the lights at Kinnick Stadium. Quarterback Alex Hornibrook went 17/22 for 205 yards and had three touchdowns through the air. Jonathan Taylor rushed for 113 yards on 25 carries and the Badgers ran for 210 yards as a team. AJ Taylor scored the go-ahead touchdown from Hornibrook with 57 seconds remaining to give Wisconsin a 21-17 lead. Alec Ingold then put the icing on the cake after an interception and scampered 33 yards a few plays later to give Wisconsin its final points. The Badgers will have week five off then gear up for a home clash with Nebraska next week.


Christopher Hess is a sophomore majoring in broadcast journalism and minoring in history. To contact him, email