Big Ten Morning Briefing: Purdue's Werner to have back surgery
September, 17, 2008
By Adam Rittenberg | ESPN.com
Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg
Chris "Beanie" Wells might be questionable for Saturday's game, but the links are always guaranteed to show up.
- Illinois players have responded to Ron Zook's challenge to ramp up the intensity, Mark Tupper writes. The Illini followed Wisconsin's lead and scheduled a series with Fresno State, Bob Asmussen writes in The (Champaign, Ill.) News-Gazette. Gutsy move. I like it.
- Indiana could be without standout safety Austin Thomas when it faces the high-powered Ball State passing attack, Lee Hurwitz writes in the Indiana Daily Student. That would mean a lot of Jerimy Finch.
- Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz used a baseball metaphor to describe his quarterback situation. Looks like he's going with a two-man starting rotation, Eric Page writes in the Quad City Times. The severe weather in Texas hit home for Iowa's Jacody Coleman, the Iowa City Press-Citizen reports.
- The bye week gives Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez some time to experiment with his young roster, Angelique Chengelis writes in The Detroit News. Rodriguez hopes the recruiting pipeline from Cass Tech High School continues, Josh Helmholdt writes in the Detroit Free Press.
- A 2006 loss to Notre Dame ruined Michigan State's season. The Spartans don't want it to happen again, Shannon Shelton writes in the Detroit Free Press. Notre Dame will try to even out time of possession against a ball-control-heavy Michigan State offense, Brian Hamilton writes in the Chicago Tribune.
- Minnesota's red-zone efficiency could be the biggest reason for its 3-0 start, Kent Youngblood writes in the Star Tribune.
- Northwestern has respect for Ohio quarterback Boo Jackson and isn't overly concerned about a lack of big plays, Jim O'Donnell writes in the Chicago Sun-Times.
- Ohio State coach Jim Tressel gets your angry e-mails, Tim May writes in The Columbus Dispatch. Quarterbacks Todd Boeckman and Terrelle Pryor have to learn to share, Jim Naveau writes. The Cleveland Plain Dealer's Doug Lesmerises has five ways to fix Ohio State.
- Defensive line depth continues to concern Penn State, which has undersized true freshman Jack Crawford in the mix at tackle, Bernard Fernandez writes in the Philadelphia Daily News. Penn State's starters have had little reason to play a full game so far, and their endurance will be tested later this season, Cory Giger writes in The Altoona Mirror.
- Bad news for talented Purdue linebacker Jason Werner, who will undergo minor back surgery -- not sure if that exists -- today, Stacy Clardie writes in The Fort Wayne Journal Gazette. Purdue's patchwork offensive line has held it together nicely in the first two games, Tom Kubat writes in The Journal and Courier.
- No surprise here, but the WAC is reviewing a blown fumble call in last Saturday's Wisconsin-Fresno State game, Jeff Potrykus writes in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Badgers defensive lineman Mike Newkirk has started strong this fall, Mike Lucas writes in The Capital Times.
BIG TEN SCOREBOARD
12:00 PM ET Illinois Northwestern 12:00 PM ET Purdue Indiana 12:00 PM ET Michigan 6 Ohio State 3:30 PM ET 10 Michigan State Penn State 3:30 PM ET 18 Minnesota 14 Wisconsin 3:30 PM ET Rutgers Maryland