Big Ten: John Ferrara

Here are the official injury report from both Michigan and Indiana for Saturday's games against Massachusetts and Western Kentucky:

MICHIGAN (vs. Massachusetts)

Out
  • OL John Ferrara, hand
  • LB Brandon Herron, ankle
  • LB/S Carvin Johnson, knee
  • LB Mike Jones, leg
  • S Jared Van Slyke, clavicle (out for season)
  • S Mike Williams, head
  • CB Troy Woolfolk, ankle
Questionable
Probable
INDIANA (at Western Kentucky)


Out
  • S Chris Adkins, ankle
  • S Jarrell Drane, knee
  • K Nick Freeland, hip
  • DE Darius Johnson, hamstring
  • RB Matt Perez, knee (ACL, out for season)
Probable

Michigan injury report for ND game

September, 9, 2010
9/09/10
6:32
PM ET
Michigan has issued its official injury report for Saturday's road game at Notre Dame (NBC, 3:30 p.m. ET).

OUT
DOUBTFUL (25 percent chance of playing)
PROBABLE (75 percent chance of playing)

Although there are more names on the "out" list than anticipated, Roundtree's status has been upgraded from doubtful earlier in the week. His presence could be key against Notre Dame, especially if the Irish crowd the box and force Denard Robinson to pass the ball. Johnson started in the opener, but left Michigan Stadium with a brace on his knee. Coach Rich Rodriguez said redshirt freshman Thomas Gordon or sophomore Floyd Simmons will step in for Johnson.

Spring superlatives: Michigan

March, 22, 2010
3/22/10
9:00
AM ET
The spring superlatives series, which examines the strongest and weakest positions for each Big Ten team, marches on with Michigan.

Arguably no team in the Big Ten needs a strong spring more than the Wolverines, who must answer questions on defense after dropping their final seven Big Ten games last fall. It doesn't help that Michigan loses its top two defenders: Big Ten co-MVP Brandon Graham at defensive end and All-Big Ten selection Donovan Warren at cornerback. The Wolverines lose a few contributors on offense but still should be dangerous on that side this fall.

Strongest position: Offensive line

  • Key returnees: G Stephen Schilling, C David Molk, T Perry Dorrestein, T Mark Huyge, G Patrick Omaneh, G John Ferrara
  • Key losses: LT Mark Ortmann, G/C David Moosman
  • The skinny: The Wolverines look solid at all of the offensive skill positions, but head coach Rich Rodriguez is a bit concerned about his outside receivers, and Michigan loses its top two running backs (Brandon Minor and Carlos Brown) from 2009. The offensive line, meanwhile, returns three starters as well as promising redshirt freshmen (Taylor Lewan, Quinton Washington, Michael Schofield). Molk could contend for All-Big Ten honors if he stays healthy, and Michigan should have much more depth this season. Rodriguez is pleased with the physical gains the linemen made during the offseason, and it should translate well to the field this fall.
Weakest position: Secondary

  • Key returnees: CB/S Troy Woolfolk (46 tackles, 1 pass breakup); S Jordan Kovacs (75 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss, 2 forced fumbles, 1 INT); S Mike Williams (56 tackles, 1 tackle for loss, 1 pass breakup)
  • Key losses: Warren (66 tackles, 4 INTs, 7 pass breakups)
  • The skinny: Michigan loses more at other positions, and the kicking game is a major concern, but the combination of Warren's departure and so many major breakdowns puts the secondary in the spotlight going forward. Woolfolk looks like a good option at one cornerback spot, but the other will be up for grabs, as J.T. Turner, J.T. Floyd and heralded recruit Demar Dorsey all will compete. The competition at the safety spots should be intriguing, as Kovacs, a walk-on, tries to hold off Vladimir Elimien and others. Michigan has enough bodies in the secondary, but the coaches need to identify a combination that works.

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg


Michigan has issued its injury report for Saturday's game against Eastern Michigan.

OUT
  • Guard David Moosman (shoulder)
  • Guard Tim McAvoy (knee)
PROBABLE
Michigan gets a boost from Hemingway's return. He and freshman quarterback Tate Forcier had great chemistry in the season opener against Western Michigan, hooking up for two touchdowns. Moosman is a starter, so his absence hurts a bit after he sustained a separated shoulder last week against Notre Dame.

John Ferrara likely will replace Moosman against Eastern Michigan, and redshirt freshman Elliott Mealer also could be in the mix at guard.

Michigan also announced its game captains for Eastern Michigan: wide receiver Jon Conover, defensive end Brandon Graham, kicker Jason Olesnavage and wide receiver LaTerryal Savoy.

Big Ten lunch links

September, 10, 2009
9/10/09
12:30
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg


In honor of the dude working the register at my local UPS store, who bears an eerily close resemblance to The Dude, I give you this:

Maude Lebowski: What do you do for recreation?

The Dude: Oh, the usual. I bowl. Drive around. The occasional acid flashback.

More movement on Michigan O-line

September, 29, 2008
9/29/08
2:09
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

Offensive line will undoubtedly be Michigan's biggest question mark the rest of the season, and head coach Rich Rodriguez said more changes could be on the way despite Saturday's dramatic comeback against Wisconsin.

If Perry Dorrestein comes back healthy from a knee injury, he likely will line-up at left tackle this week against Illinois (ABC, 3:30 p.m. ET). Mark Ortmann, who started at left tackle against Wisconsin, will be auditioned at left guard.

Converted defensive lineman John Ferrara started at left guard against the Badgers.

Michigan ranks 15th nationally in sacks allowed (.75 sacks per game) but 110th in total offense (285 ypg). 

Big Ten internal affairs

September, 24, 2008
9/24/08
9:00
AM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

It's time to go inside five Big Ten teams as they prepare for the start of league play on Saturday.

Illinois -- The defensive line might finally be taking shape for the Illini after some illness/injury issues. Sophomore Josh Brent is back in the fold at defensive tackle, which has allowed standout Will Davis to move back to his natural position of defensive end. Freshman Cory Liuget also has emerged at defensive tackle, a spot vacated when projected starter Sirod Williams tore his ACL during training camp. "It's important that we can [rotate] guys in there and keep us fresh," head coach Ron Zook said. Zook called the defensive line the team's strength before the season, but the group will need to elevate its play Saturday night against Penn State's powerful rushing attack, which ranks eighth nationally (274.3 ypg).

Indiana -- When the NCAA cleared Florida transfer Jerimy Finch to play this season, Indiana's secondary looked like one of the deepest groups on the team. That depth will be tested Saturday against Michigan State (ESPN, noon ET). The Hoosiers will be without at least one starting safety (Nick Polk, knee) and could miss their other starter, as strong safety Austin Thomas is questionable for the game with a lower leg injury. Coach Bill Lynch announced that starting cornerback Chris Phillips will miss the remainder of the season with a torn ACL. So the Hoosiers could be replacing three starters against the Spartans. Finch figures to see plenty of time.

Michigan -- A bye week allowed Michigan's offensive line time to heal, though a knee injury to tackle Perry Dorrestein last week in practice clouded things a bit. Mark Ortmann is expected back from a dislocated elbow and should rotate at left tackle with Dorrestein if Dorrestein can play. Left tackle is one of three offensive line spots that have an "OR" listed between potential starters on the depth chart. Converted defensive lineman John Ferrara could start at right guard in place of David Moosman, who is listed at both guard and center on the depth chart. Redshirt freshman Mark Huyge also should be back from an ankle injury, so the coaches have some decisions to make up front.

Minnesota -- True freshman running back DeLeon Eskridge has stepped up in the two games after Duane Bennett's knee injury, but coach Tim Brewster isn't quite ready to call Eskridge his featured back. Brewster said Eskridge, freshman Shady Salamon and junior Jay Thomas all will play Saturday at No. 14 Ohio State, and Minnesota will stick with whoever has the hot hand. The coach admitted that identifying a clear-cut starter has become less of a concern than it was after Bennett went down. Eskridge has 192 rushing yards and five touchdowns the last two games.

Ohio State -- Quarterback isn't the only offensive position where youth will be served Saturday against Minnesota. Freshman Michael Brewster remains the starter at center on this week's depth chart after playing a prominent role last week against Troy. The Buckeyes moved Jim Cordle from center to left guard after Steve Rehring injured his foot against USC. Rehring will miss "another week or so," coach Jim Tressel said, so that means more time for Brewster, one of several heralded freshmen in Ohio State's recruiting class.

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

Sorry for the late start today. Had to make a quick trip to downtown Chicago and got caught in some morning traffic. The good news is, I got to hear Ohio State coach Jim Tressel on Mike & Mike in the Morning. He reiterated that running back Chris "Beanie" Wells is doubtful for Saturday night's game against top-ranked USC (ABC, 8 p.m. ET). He added that the decision likely will be to play Wells sparingly or not at all. So it's unlikely Wells will play a major role in the game, even if he gets off the sidelines. 

Let's start the links with the game everyone's talking about:

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

Michigan safety Stevie Brown tries to block negativity from his life whenever he can. The problem is he also owns a TV.

 
 Leon Halip/Getty Images
 Stevie Brown and Michigan still remember last year's season-opening loss to Appalachian State.

When Brown flips through the channels, he's often comes across those unsightly images, the ones showing the little team with the funny name stunning the big team with the famous name. There might as well be a station called WLAS -- Wolverines lose to Appalachian State.

"It was hard to get over because every week, we saw the clips being played," Brown said. "It's still being played right now. So it's always something that stays in the back of your mind."

Does Brown relive Michigan's 34-32 loss, considered by many to be the biggest upset in college football history?

"Nah, I change the channel right then and there," he said.

Brown might want to unplug his set this week. The Wolverines enter a new era with head coach Rich Rodriguez and dramatically different schemes and personnel, but the Appalachian State loss will undoubtedly be rehashed as another season dawns Saturday at Michigan Stadium.

Rodriguez and most of his assistants weren't in Ann Arbor for Michigan's historic setback last fall, and though they focused on installing new systems with mostly unproven players this summer, there have been some not-so subtle hints about the game. Brown remembers a particular conversation he had with one of Michigan's graduate assistants.

"The one thing the GA told me was, he didn't believe it and the coaching staff didn't believe it, but when they came in, they heard that No. 3 would just have mental mistakes and blow coverages every now and then," Brown said. "I didn't ask where it came from, they didn't tell me where it came from."

It doesn't take much detective work to find the likely source. Brown started the Appalachian State game, got burned on a 68-yard touchdown and several other plays, and began the second half on the bench.

Don't expect a re-run Saturday against Utah.

(Read full post)

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- It's Big Ten preview day, so check back for updates about the league's top stories this season. If my flight to O'Hare arrives relatively on time -- famous last words -- I'll be chatting today at 4 p.m. My opening act is Illinois quarterback Juice Williams, who chats at 1:15 p.m. ET. He'll do. After finishing up a few things in Bloomington, I'm on to Ohio State tomorrow, where Beanie Wells, Brian Robiskie and others will be available. 

Let's link:

  • Illinois coach Ron Zook thinks Williams can complete 70 percent of his passes this fall, CBSSports.com's Dennis Dodd writes. The (Champaign, Ill.) News-Gazette's Bob Asmussen hands out his Camp Rantoul awards for Illinois. Wideout Chris Duvalt takes home MVP honors.
  • Investigators in the sexual assault case involving two former Iowa football players questioned the alleged victim and her family, the Iowa City Press-Citizen reports. The Hawkeyes' receiving corps is healthy and deep, Eric Page writes in the Quad City Times.
  • Indiana's depth at the skill positions has kept expectations high, LaMond Pope writes in The Fort Wayne Journal Gazette.
  • Michigan offensive lineman Elliott Mealer is struggling to regain a sense of normalcy after the car crash that killed his father and girlfriend and seriously injured his brother last Christmas Eve, Mark Snyder writes in the Detroit Free Press. Guard Cory Zirbel's injury has prompted John Ferrara to move from defense to offense, John Heuser writes in the Ann Arbor News. Wideout Terrance Robinson is also out for several weeks with an injury.
  • Greg Jones is Michigan State's best linebacker, but which spot will he occupy this season? The Spartans are still figuring it out, Andrew Mouranie writes in the Lansing State Journal. Michigan State got a wonderful surprise Wednesday as Arthur Ray Jr., the offensive lineman who battled cancer last season and is still working his way back, visited practice, Eric Lacy writes in The Detroit News.
  • Playing college football is all in the family for the Tow-Arnett brothers at Minnesota, Dennis Brackin writes in the (Minneapolis) Star Tribune. Quad injuries have dogged Ben Kuznia, but the Gophers wideout now finds himself running with the 1's, Scott Thoma writes in the West Central Tribune.
  • Northwestern hopes for a defensive resurgence with Malcolm (Arrington) in the middle, Jim O'Donnell writes in the Chicago Sun-Times. Arrington will replace standout Adam Kadela, who still stings from missing a bowl game last season.
  • Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith sent a letter to fans lamenting Time Warner's decision not to pick up the Big Ten Network and asking subscribers to switch their cable providers, Jeffrey Sheban writes in the Columbus Dispatch. Here's Smith's letter. Turning back to the field, the Buckeyes hope to regain their trademark excellence on special teams, Matt Markey writes in The (Toledo) Blade. Former Texas and Arizona coach John Mackovic picks Ohio State to knock off USC.
  • Special teams is also on the brain at Penn State, which struggled on kickoff coverage last year, Ben Brigandi writes in The Altoona Mirror. Lions coach Joe Paterno is looking for a leader at linebacker. Todd Sponsler of the 50-yard Lion blog reveals his preseason Top 25, which includes Penn State at No. 14. Bleacher Report ranks its top 12 surprise blowouts in college football history, and Penn State's 48-14 trouncing of No. 1 Pitt in 1981 tops the list.
  • Boilermakers coach Joe Tiller weighs in on the NCAA's decision to ban horse-collar tackles.
  • Allan Evridge is Wisconsin's starting quarterback, but the No. 2 job remains open, Jeff Potrykus writes in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Wisconsin fullback Chris Pressley welcomes the responsibility of being a captain this fall, Jim Polzin writes in The Capital Times. Central Michigan transfer J.J. Watt can't wait to suit up for the Badgers, Tom Mulhern writes in the Wisconsin State Journal.  

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