Week 8 is all finished, in case you missed any of the action around the Big Ten, here are your scores and notable stats. Remember: Michigan, Wisconsin, Penn State and Illinois were all on a bye week.
#8 Michigan State (6-1, 3-0) 56, Indiana (3-4, 0-3) 17
The Spartans’ offense has been on fire this season, putting up 56 points this week. Quarterback Connor Cook was 24 of 32 for 332 yards and three touchdowns and running back Jeremy Langford rushed for 109 yards and
three touchdowns. For the Hoosiers, about the only bright spot was running back Tevin Coleman, who is the nation’s leading rusher. He extended his streak of consecutive 100-yard games to nine with 132 yards this week. The Hoosiers’ defense just tired out in the second half, giving up three fourth quarter touchdowns. The victory gave Michigan State its 13th straight win versus Big Ten opponents. Next up, Michigan.
#13 Ohio State (5-1, 2-0) 56, Rutgers (5-2, 1-2) 17
The Buckeyes put up 50 points for the fourth game in a row, something the program has never done before. Led by freshman quarterback J.T. Barrett, who was 19 of 31 for 261 yards with three touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns, the Bucks almost hit the 600-yard mark in total yards. Rutgers had its three game winning streak snapped by its biggest lost in twelve years.
#19 Nebraska (6-1, 2-1) 38, Northwestern (3-4, 2-2) 17
After trailing at the end of the first and at the half, Nebraska made the right adjustments and took over in the second half. Again the star was Nebraska running back Ameer Abdullah, with 146 yards and four touchdowns, three coming in the second half. That puts him over 1,000 yards for the season and takes over for second on Nebraska’s rushing list.
Maryland (5-2, 2-1) 38, Iowa (5-2, 2-1) 31
Iowa jumped out to a quick 14-0 lead in the first quarter, only to give up 17 unanswered points to Maryland before halftime. The Terps would keep that lead despite starting quarterback C.J. Brown going down in the third quarter. He would come back in the fourth and lead his offense on a 54-yard scoring drive. Iowa did start a comeback, scoring 10 points in the last few minutes of the game. Then they had the ball with less than a minute to play but were unable to get into Maryland territory.
Minnesota (6-1, 3-0) 39, Purdue (3-5, 1-3) 38
Big Ten West leader Minnesota continues its conference winning with a narrow victory. They had to rally behind running back David Cobb, who had 194 yards and a touchdown, to overcome a 31-20 halftime deficit. Also give credit to the defense for forcing a late turnover to seal the game. It was Minnesota’s Cedric Thompson who picked off Purdue quarterback Austin Appleby with 2:28 to play. Appleby looked unstoppable in the first half, throwing three touchdown passes but only was 4 of 10 for 18 yards in the second half. Minnesota continues to grind out these close games to stay atop of its division. They will need to keep getting better as the toughest portion of the schedule is coming up in November.
Chad Finley is a weekly contributor for TheBigHouseReport.com. Follow him on Twitter @finfive1.