Will anyone pick the upset of the century?
The beauty of writing a blog instead of being a beat writer  is that I can write as much or as little as I want. And this time , it’s the latter. I’m still watching the games intently (although I will say I underestimated the high scoring and lack of defense in my pick ), and I’m still putting effort into these blogs. But it’s not fun to make the same points over and over. Playing well for three quarters and getting career games from Nathan Scheelhaase and Steve Hull are great, and I tip my cap to those two. But the numbers mean nothing if the “L” flag is flying at the end of the day. Perhaps it’s time to throw out the playbook and start from scratch (e.g. let Bailey pass more). I dunno. At a bare minimum this team needs to tread water and not regress in its final three games.
Nothing stood out from Coach Beckman’s postgame radio interview this week, so here’s the whole thing.
To the standings…
For the first time in my tenure running this blog, we have a PERFECT PICK!!! Ddub923 got the score exactly right . Major kudos goes your way. I’ll check with the higher ups to see if we can get you a small prize for this. Elsewhere, mbelcher  gets kudos as well for nailing the margin of victory. And on the other side of the coin, cretis  may have logged the highest RSDT in the history of the blog. But I know why you picked the way you did, so I’m not criticizing by any means. Overall this game, there were 28 picks split right down the middle between UI and IU. And just for fun, walker  threw in a basketball pick and had a RSDT of 4.
Overall, we had a few people drop out of the lead pack by way of their Illinois pick. The six top dogs are now all 8-1, with DarrenAlman maintaining his slim lead.
Now time to batten down the hatches for the scarlet and grey…
I’m not going to waste time here telling you what the numbers already state. The Buckeyes are an elite class with no signs of slowing down as long as Urban Meyer is in charge. Tattoo-gate and Jim Tressel’s resignation (sorry Buckeye fans…couldn’t resist posting that photo over there) now seem like just a blip on the radar. Even though the rivalry has been a bit one-sided, most of the time the games are very entertaining with great crowds. The 2002 overtime thriller and 2007 upset of number one come to mind. In fact that ’07 game was the loudest environment I’ve ever been in – sporting event or otherwise. So this upcoming game will be fun to watch…if you just put your blinders on and ignore the scoreboard.
My prediction: Ohio State 56, Illinois 10
- I want to give a quick shout out to my colleague on the DWS football postgame show  Martin O’Donnell. The postgame show often gets a bad rap for being nothing more that callers complaining. But Martin’s fantastic game analysis is often overlooked. Among former UI football players currently in broadcasting, I can’t think of anyone better than Martin.
- Since no one ventured a guess at one part the trivia question  I posed in a comment on last week’s blog, here’s the answer. The most points in a game involving one Big Ten team is 146 in a game between Minnesota and Grinnell in 1904. Believe it or not, that was a Gopher shutout. In that 1904 season, in which Minny claims a mythical national title, the Gophers went 13-0 and outscored opponents 725-12, including the aforementioned Grinnell game and a 107-0 shellacking of Twin Cities Central High School. So there’s your history lesson for the day.
- Want to take a moment of personal privilege to congratulate my alma mater, Tri-Valley, for remaining undefeated and advancing to the third round of the IHSA playoffs…both firsts for the program. For a small school who broke away from a successful co-op many years ago, it’s been a long uphill battle to get to where the team is now. I have a bit of a vested interest in the team since I was their play-by-play ma n back in the day.
Coming up next time: OSU thoughts, standings, and Purdue predictions