Big Ten--Week 1
Well, the first week of the season is over for Big Ten teams, and while most of the results were as expected, there were certainly a number of surprises in team performances.
First, MSU performed as was expected against Montana St. There were no real surprises as both quarterbacks did fine jobs in leading the team to five passing touchdowns. Except for Keshawn Martin, most of the receivers got the job done. By the way, did anyone notice how the players' family section erupted after Dion Sims made his touchdown reception in the second quarter? I think this is going to happen quite frequently over the next four years. A good win for the Spartans is now followed by a tougher game game against Central, who struggled offensively in their 19-6 loss against Arizona on Saturday night.
As for the rest of the conference, the biggest surprise was Ohio St.'s narrow win over Navy. Most prognosticators blame this on looking forward to next week's big game against Southern Cal.
Northwestern and Michigan had good wins, as did Purdue against a woeful Toledo team. Penn St. seemed to take the second half off after coasting against Akron in the first half. Illinois' loss was somewhat surprising, not that they lost, but by the margin Missouri defeated them.
The remaining conference teams, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin all won, but seemed to really struggle against inferior teams. All four teams could have lost these games, but managed to survive and advance.
In my opinion, most pre-season predictions concerning the conference still hold true. It is said that the biggest improvement a team makes is between the first and second games, so let's see if this is the case for all the teams. I think that after the next three weeks we should be able to get a feel for where this season will be going, and who the real contenders and pretenders are.
What are your feelings after the first week?