Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg
It's game week. Hallelujah. Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez addresses the media around 10 a.m. ET, at which time he could announce his starting quarterback for Saturday's season opener against Utah. Several of Rodriguez's colleagues also hold their news conferences today, so check back for updates.
Onto the links:
Ron Zook thinks Illinois will be better this year, but versatile wideout Arrelious Benn needs to fill the big-play void left by Rashard Mendenhall, Terry Bannon writes in the Chicago Tribune. Benn is already mentoring freshman wideout Cordale Scott, Lindsey Willhite writes in the Daily Herald. The Illinois-Missouri football rivalry is catching up quickly to its basketball brother, the Braggin' Rights game, Dan O'Neill writes in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Kellen Lewis might not start the season opener for Indiana, but he'll be the No. 1 quarterback soon enough, Jared Poertner writes in the Bloomington Herald-Times (subscription required). Indiana named its captains during the weekend, with projected starting cornerback Chris Phillips joining running back Marcus Thigpen and linebacker Will Patterson.
Iowa's nonconference schedule will bring back memories for coach Kirk Ferentz, Randy Peterson writes in the Des Moines Register. The Hawkeyes picked up a commitment from Brandon Wegher, considered the state's top prep running back.
A great piece by The Ann Arbor News' John Heuser on RichRod, who always craved the spotlight after coming from small-town America. See, not everyone in West Virginia hates him. All four starters return to a Michigan defensive line that wants to recapture its 2006 form, Mark Snyder writes in the Detroit Free Press. There are many more questions across the line of scrimmage on the Wolverines' offensive line, Rich Rezler writes in The Ann Arbor News.
A marquee opener against Cal has kept Michigan State on its toes throughout camp, Joe Rexrode writes in the Lansing State Journal. Spartans new starting left tackle Rocco Cironi welcomes the pressure he'll face this fall.
Minnesota coach Tim Brewster has had to adjust his philosophy to embrace the speed and the spread that define today's college football, Kent Youngblood writes in the Star Tribune. The Gophers can't wait for their new stadium to open next fall, Chip Scoggins writes in the Star Tribune. If you're just as excited, just out the new Web site for TCF Bank Stadium, which launched today.
Consistency is the next step for Northwestern senior quarterback C.J. Bacher, Skip Myslenski writes in the Chicago Tribune. Northwestern and Michigan State are poised to make a jump this fall, Marcus Fuller writes in the St. Paul Pioneer Press.
Ohio State has been here before, producing dominant teams that can't win national titles, Ken Gordon writes in The Columbus Dispatch. To get over the hump, Ohio State needs a better turnover margin, Stewart Mandel writes on SI.com. The Buckeyes will have a dramatically different look in 2009, and The Cleveland Plain Dealer's Doug Lesmerises takes a look at the future. Buckeyes walk-on wideout Dan Potokar will undergo more treatment for testicular cancer.
Quarterback Daryll Clark's performance at Penn State has major implications for the other Paterno on the coaching staff, Cory Giger writes in the Altoona Mirror. Penn State's recruiting appears to be slipping, Sam Ross Jr. writes in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Lions linebacker Chris Colasanti is ready for a bigger role this fall after learning from Dan Connor, Joe Miegoc writes in the Pocono Record.
Junior college transfer Dwight Mclean should step right into a starting safety spot at Purdue, and teammate Brandon King couldn't be happier, Tom Kubat writes in The Journal and Courier. Boilermakers senior quarterback Curtis Painter doesn't mind taking a back seat to coach Joe Tiller this fall, Mike Lucas writes in The Capital Times.
It has been three years, but Wisconsin's Allan Evridge knows the drill of being a Division I-A starting quarterback, Jeff Potrykus writes in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The Badgers should have plenty of depth on the defensive line this season.