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Wilson leads B1G contingent in Super Bowl

2/3/2014

It had been four years since a former Big Ten quarterback (Drew Brees in 2010) led his team to a Super Bowl championship. Russell Wilson ended the drought in dominating fashion Sunday night.

Wilson, who played his final collegiate season at Wisconsin, and a suffocating Seattle Seahawks defense pummeled Denver 43-8 in Super Bowl XLVIII. While Peyton Manning had a forgettable night, Wilson completed 18 of 25 passes for 206 yards and two touchdowns, displaying tremendous poise for a quarterback in only his second season in the NFL.

As Penn State fans were quick to point out to me on Twitter, two Big Ten quarterbacks became champions Sunday as former Nittany Lions signal-caller Michael Robinson, now the Seahawks' fullback, helped the Seattle offense have a big night.

For those saying the Big Ten can't claim Wilson because he played his first three years at NC State, it comes down to this: He had his best season at Wisconsin and finished his career there. He counts.

It was a fairly quiet night, statistically speaking, for former Big Ten players in the big game.

Here's a recap:

SEATTLE

  • Wilson completed 18 of 25 passes for 206 yards with two touchdowns; he added 26 rushing yards.

  • Defensive end Cliff Avril (Purdue) recorded three tackles, one for loss, and had two pass deflections.

  • Robinson had one reception for 7 yards and served as Marshawn Lynch's lead blocker; he also had a tackle on special teams.

  • Linebacker O'Brien Schofield (Wisconsin) had a tackle for loss.

  • Safety Chris Maragos (Wisconsin) had a tackle on special teams.

  • Tight end Kellen Davis (Michigan State) and defensive tackle Jordan Hill (Penn State) weren't active for the game.

DENVER

  • Running back Montee Ball (Wisconsin) had 1 rushing yard on six attempts and two receptions for 2 yards.

  • Wide receiver Eric Decker (Minnesota) had one reception for 6 yards (targeted five times) and one punt return for 9 yards.

  • Defensive end Shaun Phillips (Purdue) had four tackles.

  • Cornerback Marquice Cole (Northwestern) was active but didn't record any statistics.

Wisconsin fans had a lot to celebrate as a former Badgers quarterback -- Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell -- called plays for another in Wilson, who had a nice exchange with his former Badgers backfield mate after the game.