In addition to Penn State’s 23-17 win over Syracuse on Saturday, all 11 other Big 10 schools were in action. Including the Lions win, the league was 10-2. Here’s a quick summary of how those games played out.
Ohio State 40, Buffalo 20
The Buckeyes raced out to a 23-0 lead behind 2 Braxton Miiller touchdowns, and a long Jordan Hill run, but the Bulls would rally to close within 10 twice, but never closer. Several Buckeyes suffered cramping issues in the heat and humidity in Columbus, including linebacker Ryan Shazier, as well as Miller. OSU racked up 460 yards of offense, but 2 turnovers, including a pick 6, allowed Buffalo to hang around.
Up Next: San Diego State
Northwestern 44, Cal 30
This could be the Big 10’s biggest win of the opening week. Through 3 quarters, this was a back and forth affair, but Collin Ellis’ 2nd pick 6 of the evening to put the Wildcats up 37-27 proved to be the game winning score. Quarterback Trevor Siemian played the majority of the game for Northwestern after starter Kain Colter left with an injury early. Injuries proved to be a major storyline as Cal head coach Sonny Dykes implied the Wildcats faked injuries to slow down the Bears high powered offense.
Up Next: Syracuse
Nebraska 37, Wyoming 34
Another year, and more huge questions for the once vaunted Blackshirt defense. The Cowboys rolled up over 600 yards of offense and 34 points, and technically, had the ball with a shot to win late. Going back to last season, Nebraska has now given up over 1,800 yards in their last 3 games. The offense did put up 530 yards, including 375 on the ground, and 3 passing scores from Taylor Martinez.
Up Next: Southern Miss
Michigan 59, Central Michigan 9
The post Denard Robinson era got off to a flying start in Ann Arbor with the Wolverines throwing for 221 yards and rushing for another 242. Devin Gardner threw for 152 of those yards himself, ran for another 52, and accounted for 3 scores (1 passing, 2 rushing). Tailback Fitz Toussaint returned from a broken leg to rush for 2 scores, and heralded recruit Derrick Green carried the ball 11 times for 58 yards and a touchdown. If there was one concern, it was Gardner’s two interceptions (freshman QB Shane Morris threw a third in mop up time).
Up Next: Notre Dame
Illinois 42, Southern Illinois 34
Nathan Scheelhaase put together a day that seemed 4 years in the making, putting up 415 yards through the air, and the Illini needed every single one as they held on to beat Southern Illinois at home. On the flip side, the Illinois rushing attack only put up 49 yards on 30 carries, and the defense gave up 407 yards (341 passing, 66 rushing). The outcome was in doubt until the final seconds when the Illini defense stopped the Salukis on a 4th down play inside their own 5.
Up Next: Cincinnati