Play Fantasy Use your Fantasy skills to win Cash Prizes. Join or start a league today. Play Now
 
Tag:Michigan State
Posted on: December 13, 2010 12:52 pm
Edited on: December 14, 2010 6:24 pm
 

Big Ten updates logo, annouces division names

Posted by Adam Jacobi

With the Big Ten adding Nebraska to the fold earlier this year, the old Big Ten logo with the subtle "11" embedded was suddenly rendered obsolete. The Big Ten's response? A Big Ten logo with a subtle "10" embedded. Here's the new logo unveiled by commissioner Jim Delany on the Big Ten Network today:

As for the division names, yes, they're "Legends" and "Leaders." The announcement was made after a five-minute presentation about alumni of each and every school doing good things, and as the image above indicates, the split is like this:

LEGENDS

  • Iowa
  • Michigan
  • Michigan State
  • Minnesota
  • Nebraska
  • Northwestern

LEADERS

  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Ohio State
  • Penn State
  • Purdue
  • Wisconsin

There'll be a time and place for editorializing about the new branding, but for now, here's what it all is. Reactions go in the comment section below.



Posted on: December 13, 2010 4:03 am
 

VIDEO: Rick Ross endorses Mark Dell for the NFL

Posted by Adam Jacobi

There cannot possibly be anything we can say to prepare you for this video, so here it is: rapper Rick Ross, feverishly praising senior Michigan State wide receiver Mark Dell for almost two minutes straight.

Yes, Ross did seriously compare Dell to Tim Tebow at one point, saying this about the two players:

"Every so often, we see certain players that really bring that energy, that light back to you. And you know, in recent years, Tim Tebow did that. And I think Mart at this wide receiver position can give you that same excitement as a receiver, you know what I mean?"

Now, the video was posted exclusively to Mark Dell's personal website (WARNING: some audio of him in interview sessions is on auto-play when you go to the site, and I couldn't find where to turn it off), so it certainly gives the impression that ol' Ricky Rozay here is doing a favor for a friend and little more; it's not as if this is actually going to boost Dell's modest draft stock at all. But let's back up -- are Rick Ross and Mark Dell actually buddies? If so, how random is that? Ross is based out of Miami, and while many college football players come out of southern Florida, um, Dell's not one of them; he's from Farmington Hills, a suburb of Detroit. So how ... why ... I don't get it.

Also, for the record, Mark Dell is currently rated 31st among wide receivers in CBS Sports' NFL draft rankings. He's projected to go either in the 7th round or as a free agent (though, for what it's worth, once you get past the first two or three rounds, projected draft position is little more than a crapshoot). And Rick Ross is hyping the guy like this? Tell you what: if Mark Dell makes an All-Pro team during his NFL career, we will -- without a hint of irony or reservation -- start referring to Ross as an NFL Draft Expert. All caps. "NFL Draft Expert Rick Ross released a new album today, and warned franchises not to overpay for veteran free agents with a history of knee problems," etc., etc. So for that reason, we are now pulling for Dell to succeed in the NFL. Wouldn't it be exciting to live in a world where Rick Ross is an authority on college football?

[Terrorist fist jab: The Only Colors ]
Posted on: December 7, 2010 4:45 pm
 

Vandy to cut candidate list, as they should

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Thanks to the Jon Gruden panic at Miami, the Bill McCartney escapades at Colorado , etc., the coaching search at Vanderbilt has flown mostly under the radar to date despite it being the only vacancy this offseason in the SEC (barring Dan Mullen' s hypothetical departure at Mississippi State ). That doesn't mean the Commodore brass hasn't been doing their due diligence. In fact, as this report from the Tennessean indicates , they've been extremely diligent. According to the report, the full alphabetical list of coaches contacted or coaches whose agents have been contacted by the 'Dores --and it may not be comprehensive -- is as follows:

Troy Calhoun , head coach, Air Force
Dave Doeren , defensive coordinator, Wisconsin
James Franklin, offensive coordinator, Maryland
Al Golden, head coach, Temple
Todd Graham , head coach, Tulsa
Gus Malzahn, offensive coordinator, Auburn
Greg Roman, offensive coordinator, Stanford
Don Treadwell,
offensive coordinator, Michigan State
Shawn Watson, offensive coordinator, Nebraska

If that seems like a lot of candidates, Vandy Vice Chancellor of Athletics David Williams agrees with you :
Williams said he will select three candidates — maybe four — from the first round of interviews to become finalists. There would then likely be a second round of interviews.

The cut could come as early as today or as late as next week.

"What I'd prefer to do is probably take more than three to the second round, but to get this thing done, three is probably the optimal number," said Williams, who has declined to comment on candidates during the search process.
We already know a few names on the above list that won't reciprocate enough interest to make the cut -- Calhoun, Malzahn, possibly Golden -- and even though Williams said the frequency of offensive-minded coaches on the list is "just how it's gone," add that frequency to the 'Dores hopeless struggles on offense the last few years and it's easy to see Vandy leaning in that direction.

This could lead the 'Dores to Roman, who's coming off of two incredible seasons with the Cardinal, has first-hand experience dealing with the Stanford-like academic requirements at Vandy, and even got some measure of name-recognition following his nomination as a Broyles Award finalist.

But before they can settle on one candidate, the 'Dores have to settle on three or four. It's time for Williams to make that call.

Posted on: December 7, 2010 11:48 am
Edited on: December 7, 2010 11:59 am
 

Which bowls have the best swag?

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Coaches and players love going to a bowl game.  For coaches it's always nice to have a bowl appearance on the resume, even if there are 400 of them, plus it gives them the chance to hold a few more practices with their team, and there's nothing coaches like more than practice time.  For the players, bowl games are a reward for a hard season, and though some destinations are better than others -- oh boy!  Detroit in December! -- at least those players know that wherever they go, they're going to get some free stuff.

Everybody loves free stuff.  I have t-shirts in my closet that I never wear, but I keep them because I got them for free. You never know when you'll have to paint your house or apartment, and it's always nice to have one of those free shirts around for such an occasion.

Nice as free shirts are, though, going to a bowl game gets you a lot better swag than just a shirt, and thanks to the Sports Business Journal, we can see what every bowl is giving to the players.  I perused the list and came up with some of the best that each game has to offer.

Unfortunately, a lot of the bowl games list "gift suite" as something they're giving to the players, which isn't very specific.  Essentially what it means is that players are taken into a suite filled with all sorts of cool stuff, and they're allowed to pick and choose what they'd like.  All the BCS bowls list these gift suites, and since those bowls make a ton of money, I would think that they're pretty good.

As for the bowls that list exactly what they're giving away, you could do a lot worse than going to the Alamo Bowl.

This year Oklahoma State and Arizona players will be going home with an XBox 360 Kinect, a giftcard to Gamestop, some headphones, an iPod shuffle, Fossil watch -- if you watch Jersey Shore, you know what happens when somebody gives you a Fossil watch -- a mini helmet and a panoramic team photo.  All that and you get to see the Alamo and pretend you're Davy Crockett.

Other bowls, like the Capital One Bowl, aren't quite sure what the players will want, as it knows that differnet people have different tastes.  That's why instead of specific gifts, Alabama and Michigan State players will all get a watch from the Timely Watch Co. and a $420 gift certificate to Best Buy.

All in all, just about every bowl game is going to give you a watch and some free clothes, so no matter where you end up, odds are you'll be leaving with something nice.

Still, some are worse than others.  Which bowls would I least like to end up in?  Well, the R+L Carrier New Orleans Bowl only gives you an iPod touch and a Balfour ring.  Well, I already have an iPod, and I don't wear jewelry, so I appreciate the sentiment, but step your game up.  The New Mexico Bowl gives away some nice stuff, though I'm not sure what I want with the "pen in box" or the Christmas ornament.

As for the Sun Bowl giving Notre Dame and Miami players a Helen of Troy hair dryer, well, I'm sure that will come in handy.

Then there are the bowl games who won't play along, and like to keep their gifts a secret.  This means one of two things, the gifts either suck, or they're really awesome.  One of these bowls is the New Era Pinstripe Bowl, which I'm guessing will feature either a fitted Yankees hat, or $100 million dollars.

Of course, these are just my tastes, I have no idea what you're in to.  Feel free to peruse the entire list and let us know in the comments which bowls you'd like to play in.
Posted on: December 4, 2010 4:22 am
 

Big Ten schools looking in-conference for coaches

Posted by Adam Jacobi

There are, as of now, two job openings in the Big Ten: Indiana and Minnesota. Those two programs are generally regarded as being among the three worst in the conference (Illinois being the third, but at least the Illini go to a Rose Bowl every now and then), so a head coaching spot at one of these places probably isn't going to be terribly attractive -- or a recipe for success -- unless the candidate in question is familiar with the Big Ten, its style of play, the recruiting grounds, etc., and wants to spend years and years in the conference.

It's no real surprise, then, that both Indiana and Minnesota are reportedly interviewing candidates from other Big Ten schools -- and really, both schools are looking at superb hires. Minnesota has reportedly interviewed Wisconsin offensive coordinator Paul Chryst. You may remember Wisconsin's offense from such hits as 83-20 over Indiana, 70-21 over Northwestern , and 48-28 over Michigan. Sure, it's not like hiring Chryst is all it takes to get the Gophers dropping 50 on everybody that walks into TCF Bank Stadium, but at least they'd be getting a guy that knows how to do that at this level.

Meanwhile, over in Indiana, the Hoosiers apparently have their eyes on several coaches with Big Ten ties. Michigan State assistant head coach Don Treadwell is going to be the name that's most familiar to Big Ten fans, but watch out for Oklahoma OC Kevin Wilson -- previously Northwestern's offensive coordinator for three very productive years. Treadwell was the de facto head coach for Michigan State while Mark Dantonio recovered from his heart attack, and it's worth noting that the Spartans stayed undefeated while Dantonio was either out or operating in a limited capacity. If Treadwell was auditioning for a head coaching spot, it's hard to imagine he got anything but an A+.

Still, Wilson is considered the leader in this race, for whatever that's worth; if so, Indiana hiring away Bob Stoops' OC would be nothing short of a coup, especially considering Wilson was the winner of the Broyles Award for the top college assistant in 2008. He's got almost 30 years of tutelage under Randy Walker and Stoops, dating back to his college football playing days, and he's still only 49. Frankly, it's something of a surprise that Wilson hasn't been hired already. If he or even Treadwell is seriously considering a Hoosier offer, the future just might be bright in Bloomington. If, however, the interest isn't totally mutual and Indiana's forced to go the route of, say, Iowa OC Ken O'Keefe instead, well, that'd be just a little more depressing, if not exactly surprising.

Posted on: December 3, 2010 11:11 am
 

Let the mocking of RichRod commence

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Listen, we all knew this was coming.  The second it went public that during Thursday night's banquet honoring Michigan's 1985 Rose Bowl team, Rich Rodriguez basically made a plea to return as head coach and quoted a Josh Groban song, and then played that Josh Groban song, it was only a matter of time before rivals pounced.

They've pounced.

Seems a Michigan State fan wanted to make sure that Rodriguez knows he raises them up as well, but I must warn you, Josh Groban waits for you.


Hat tip to EDSBS
Posted on: November 28, 2010 12:02 pm
 

What I learned from the Big Ten (Nov 27)

Posted by Tom Fornelli

1. Wisconsin would run over its own mother if she got in the way.  Not because Wisconsin doesn't like its mother, but because it just doesn't know how to stop.  For the third time this season the Badgers put up at least 70 points, this time against Northwestern.  Though it does seem like Bret Bielema at least learned how to slow his boys down a little bit, as they had 70 at the end of the third quarter and decided not to go for 100.  Which is very considerate of the Badgers.  Of course, most importantly, the win means that Wisconsin should be going to the Rose Bowl.

2. At least I think it does.  Nobody will be sure until Sunday night which Big Ten team is going to the Rose Bowl.  Wisconsin, Ohio State and Michigan State are all tied for first in the conference, and the BCS rankings will decide which team gets to go to Pasadena.  Well, Wisconsin has been the highest ranked of the three for weeks, and it's hard to think that either Ohio State or Michigan State will pass the Badgers after a game in which they just hung 70 points on the board again.  Then again, who knows?

3. Rich Rodriguez is in trouble. What? You think that a coach with a team that's gone 7-5 is safe?  How'd that work out for Randy Shannon this season? Exactly, and Shannon didn't have people calling for his head since the second his name was announced as the new head coach as Rodriguez has.  Getting to 7-5 and going to a bowl game for the first time since coming to Ann Arbor is nice, but beating Ohio State once in a while would be nicer.  Here's a nice little stat for you to consider.  During his three years at Michigan, Rodriguez has won three conference games in the Big House.  Three.  During Jim Tressel's career at Ohio State, he's won four games inside the Big House.  He only gets to play there once every two years.

4. Ohio State is the best program in the Big Ten.  I didn't say they were the best team this season, as I think that title belongs to Wisconsin, but the best program in the Big Ten is clearly Ohio State.  The Buckeyes clinched at least a share of the Big Ten title for the sixth consecutive season, which is hard to do in any conference, let alone the Big Ten.  The last school to win six straight Big Ten titles?  Ohio State of course, from 1972-77.

5. Iowa must be a huge Walking Dead fan.  It's the only explanation for the way they walked through the last month of the season like a bunch of brain dead zombies.  The day before Halloween the Hawkeyes pasted Michigan State 37-6 to improve to 4-1 in the Big Ten and remain in the Rose Bowl hunt.  They then went 1-3 in November, with that one win coming against Indiana, and that game saw Damarlo Belcher drop a game-winning touchdown in the closing seconds.  The Hawkeyes then followed that narrow escape with losses to Northwestern, Ohio State, and Minnesota.  What happened?
Posted on: November 27, 2010 4:36 pm
Edited on: November 27, 2010 4:38 pm
 

Wisconsin smells roses

Posted by Tom Fornelli

With wins by both Ohio State and Michigan State on Saturday morning, Wisconsin came in to its regular season finale against Northwestern needing a win to grab a share of the Big Ten title and possibly punch its ticket to Pasadena.  So far, things are going according to plan.

The game is still early in the second quarter, but the Badgers aren't having any trouble with the Dan Persa-less Wildcats.  Montee Ball has three touchdowns in the first 18 minutes of action, as Wisconsin has jumped out to a 21-3 lead.  Not helping Northwestern's case are the three turnovers that it has already committed.

Illinois gashed Northwestern for over 500 yards on the ground last week at Wrigley Field, and it looks like Wisconsin may be able to top that.

This win is huge for Wisconsin not just because of the Big Ten title, but because if the Badgers do win, they'll likely be bound for Pasadena and the Rose Bowl.  With a three-way tie atop the conference, the BCS standings will be used to determine which team gets to go to the Rose Bowl.  Up until this week Wisconsin has been ahead of both Ohio State and Michigan State, and that's not likely to change considering the way things are currently going in Madison.

Update: As I hit publish on this post, Scott Tolzien hit David Gilreath for an 18-yard touchdown pass.  It's now 28-3 Wisconsin.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com