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Monday, August 20, 2012
Big Ten weekend scrimmage roundup

By Brian Bennett

With training camp winding down, several Big Ten teams held full scrimmages this weekend. Some of them were open to the media. Here's a rundown on those in which details were available:

Iowa

The Hawkeyes held a public scrimmage at Kinnick Stadium, where the biggest news of the day was an injury. Freshman running back Barkley Hill hurt his leg while scoring a touchdown and had to be carted off. There was no official word on the severity of the injury, but it didn't look good. The Iowa running back curse continues to defy all logic, but Iowa fans can hope for the best here.

Damon Bullock, a strong candidate to start at tailback, had six carries for 16 yards, while true freshman Greg Garmon produced 43 yards on 11 attempts. James Vandenberg completed six-of-12 passes for 101 yards and a 25-yard touchdown even though top receivers Keenan Davis and Kevonte Martin-Manley were held out as a precaution. Defensive lineman Carl Davis had a sack and batted down a couple of passes.

Michigan State

The Spartans' offense topped the defense 52-48 the second preseason jersey scrimmage. According to the team's official stats, quarterback Andrew Maxwell was 13-of-24 for 212 yards and one touchdown pass, with tight end Dion Sims hauling in 10 catches for 171 yards and a touchdown.

"Andrew Maxwell and Dion Sims really impressed today," coach Mark Dantonio said. "They connected for some exciting plays."

Le'Veon Bell was limited, but Larry Caper and Nick Hill combined for 84 rushing yards.

Maxwell and the offense clinched the win by going on a a seven-play, 51-yard drive to set up a Dan Conroy 29-yard field goal on the scrimmage's final play.

Minnesota

The Gophers' weekend scrimmage was closed to the media, but the team's official site has a few video highlights.

Northwestern

The Wildcats held an intra-squad scrimmage that featured many of their younger players at Camp Kenosha. The defense allowed only one touchdown during the scrimmage and forced three turnovers, including two interceptions by by cornerback Mike Eshun. Backups Zack Oliver and Trevor Siemien handled most of the quarterback duties, combining to go 12-for-16 for 111 yards. USC transfer Kyle Prater had two catches for 29 yards.

Defensive end Dean Lowry also had a big day, and the true freshman could see playing time in the opener against Syracuse, according to the Chicago Tribune.