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Tuesday Morning Brews (9/23/14)

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Checking in on the B1G's running backs.

Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

Still the Best (at Running Back)

In a successful weekend for the conference, the headliners were still, without a doubt, the stud running backs. Only three quarterbacks put together 200 yard games - in part because of blowout wins and plenty of yards to be found on the ground - while three running backs ran for 200 yards, Josh Ferguson got another 190, and Tevin Coleman touched the ball 19 times for 132. It's a talent-laden field at running back.

It was also a resurgent weekend for dual-threat QBs. Gone are the days of Terrelle Pryor, Denard Robinson, and Taylor Martinez, but a new crop has come to replace them: Minnesota QB Chris Streveler ran for 161 and completed only one forward pass, Tanner McEvoy ran for 158 and threw for 112, and Tommy Armstrong got 96 and threw for 113. As offensive innovation goes, it's not much, but it will do in the meantime for putting up points.

It's also evident that this kind of offense will not fly against better defenses of the Power 5. Statistically the Big Ten has three of the top 5 running backs in the country in Abdullah, Cobb, and Coleman, and there's plenty more talent than that (see: Curtis Samuel, 6.3 ypc, Penn State's Akeel Lynch, 7.7 ypc, Nebraska's Imani Cross, 9.6 ypc). But if this was a weekend in which the conference did its job, it still held all the echoes of failures past. No team will be able to consistently win when throwing for so few yards, and it wasn't just Minnesota, with their grand total of 7: all told, nine of the thirteen teams playing passed for under 200 yards. This isn't complete football, and that just doesn't hold up against solid teams.

If this trend holds true, it would at least bode well for Michigan going into its matchup with Minnesota. The Gophers have lately been a team that, like Oregon, is pushing the boundaries of football, but doing so in the opposite direction - from football-basketball to football-rugby. Unfortunately for Michigan, they at least do the running game proud, and Michigan's superior passing (46% completions against Utah, 0 touchdowns, 3 interceptions, 4.4 yards per attempt) can't really boast much better.

Hitting the Links Is Hiking Europe Until We Win

Eleven Warriors' Take on Coke Giveaway

So, Notre Dame was rock bottom. Then going into halftime on Miami (Ohio), 17-10, was rock bottom. Then Utah was rock bottom. Then this happened.

Youth Movement Underway

A short article and interesting stat about this year's offense for the Buckeyes.

Best B1G Receiving Tandem?

ESPN debates who the best receiving starters in the Big Ten are. Hint: neither picked Stefon Diggs and Deon Long.

Malik McDowell Has Been 'Stout'

Dantonio talks about his true freshman three games into the season.

Grading the Wolverines

Nick Baumgardner pulls out his red pen and hands out three F's.

TTB Game Recap

This comes a little late but Magnus at TTB had some good thoughts following Michigan's loss to Utah.

Wisconsin O-Line on SportsCenter

SportsCenter has some great commercials, and this is definitely up there.

B1G Distances

This is without a doubt the best, most researched fanpost I have ever seen.

Marcus Leak Highlight

By the way, if you missed it, Marcus Leak did this. Don't bother listening to the announcers - just watch it.

SEC QB Power Rankings

Get caught up quickly on who has been sticking around in the SEC quarterback picture.

B1G Power Rankings | Helmet Stickers

...Michigan edged out Illinois, Purdue, and Northwestern.

The End Is Near

Hot seat talk surrounded Brady Hoke, but it equally surrounded Will Muschamp. As Year2 writes for Team Speed Kills, Muschamp is also done.

Bill Connelly Mulls SHTM, Indiana

Bill C. talks Indiana's D-line, 27 seconds, and transitive properties.

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Stat of the week: Marcus Mariota has yet to throw a pick; he leads the nation by far in passer rating, has 16 total touchdowns, and has the best completion rate of his career (74.0%).