B1G Weekly Recap: Michigan State Holds On, Northwestern Upset Caps B1G Weekend

With just one Big Ten team playing a nonconference game this weekend, it meant a nearly full conference slate of games. The Big Ten lost its last undefeated team when Nebraska’s comeback attempt against Michigan State fell short, leaving the conference with seven one-loss teams. Despite a slow start to the season, Northwestern showed that they’re looking to make a little noise in the Big Ten West race after they upset Wisconsin in Evanston.

Ohio State 52, Maryland 24

The Buckeyes jumped on the Terrapins early and never really let them off the mat, pulling out to a 31-10 lead at halftime. J.T. Barrett put in another good performance, going 18-for-23 passing for 267 yards and four touchdowns while running for 71 yards and another score. Ezekiel Elliot added 139 yards on the ground on 24 carries for Ohio State.

Stefon Diggs was the playmaker for Maryland that Ohio State needed to shut down, and they did a pretty good job of doing so. Diggs had seven catches for just 52 yards and a touchdown that came well after the game had already been decided. The Buckeye defense picked off Maryland QBs four times, including one brought by for a touchdown by Raekwon McMillan. Ohio State is off next week before hosting Rutgers and Maryland is also idle before going to Kinnick Stadium to take on Iowa.

Purdue 38, Illinois 27

Austin Appleby started for the first time in his collegiate career to lead Purdue to the first Big Ten victory since 2012. Appleby finished 15-for-20 for 202 yards and a touchdown and he rushed for 76 yards and two scores as well. The Boilermakers rushed for 349 yards as a team, led by Akeem Hunt’s 177 yards.

Wes Lunt did what he could to keep the Illini in the game, throwing for 332 yards and two TDs before leaving the game in the 4th quarter with what turned out to be a broken leg. Lunt will be out 4-6 weeks with the injury and Reilly O’Toole will take his place under center. Purdue will host Michigan State on Saturday while Illinois will make a visit to Wisconsin.

Indiana 49, North Texas 24

In the lone nonconference game of the weekend, Indiana easily dispatched Sun Belt foe North Texas to get back in the win column. Nate Sudfeld threw for 230 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Hoosiers over the Mean Green.

Tevin Coleman hit the century mark in rushing yards for the seventh straight game, racking up 150 yards and a score. D’Angelo Roberts got 102 rushing yards for himself and two TDs for the Hoosiers. Next up for Indiana is a trip to Iowa to take on the Hawkeyes.

Northwestern 20, Wisconsin 14

Once again, Melvin Gordon played an outstanding game and once again, Wisconsin’s quarterbacks played poorly, this time leading to a Badger defeat. Gordon did his part, toting the ball 27 times for 259 yards and a touchdown. Tanner McEvoy started the game but was replaced late in the first half after starting the game 4-for-10 for just 24 yards and an interception. Former starter Joel Stave came in, but didn’t fare much better, going 8-for-19 for 113 yards, one score, and he was picked off three times.

Justin Jackson had 162 rushing yards for the Wildcats, with Trevor Siemian throwing for 182 yards and a TD in the upset that put Northwestern at 2-0 in the Big Ten West. Wisconsin will look to even their conference record next week when they welcome Illinois to Camp Randall and Northwestern will try to continue their winning ways when they take a trip to Minnesota to take on the Golden Gophers.

Rutgers 26, Michigan 24

Rutgers got their first Big Ten victory, sending Brady Hoke one game closer to the unemployment line in the process. Gary Nova was the star of the show, throwing for 404 yards and three touchdowns on the Wolverine defense. The loss dropped the Wolverines to 2-4 on the season and 0-2 in the Big Ten, something they haven’t done since 1967 when they started 0-3 in conference play.

Devin Gardner threw for 178 yards with an interception and ran for 40 and two touchdowns. Derrick Green added 74 yards on the ground but is now out for the season with a broken clavicle. Rutgers has a bye week to prepare for Ohio State and the Wolverines will host Penn State next weekend in Ann Arbor.

Michigan State 27, Nebraska 22

Michigan State looked well on its way to another blowout victory at home as it pulled away from the Cornhuskers to lead 27-3 after three quarters. Nebraska made things interesting with 19 straight points in the 4th quarter, and they even had a chance to get the win before Trae Waynes picked off Tommy Armstrong Jr. with less than minute to go with the Huskers driving in Spartan territory.

Ameer Abdullah had just 45 yards on 24 carries as the Spartan defense held Nebraska to just 47 yards rushing as a team. Jeremy Langford had 111 yards on the ground as Michigan State won their conference opener and improved to 4-1 overall on the season. Michigan State will travel to West Lafayette to take on Purdue on Saturday and Nebraska will be idle before taking a trip to Evanston to play Northwestern.

What did you think of this weekend’s set of games? Were you rooting for Nebraska to pull off the comeback to cap a crazy Saturday of college football? Let us know your favorite moment of the weekend in the comments below.

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