Illini WR Mike Dudek: rare bright spot in lost season

Mike Dudek Catch

Champaign, IL- While your statistics professor might give you a decent argument disputing it, Saturday’s loss to Iowa effectively ended the season for the Fighting Illini. Sitting at 4-5, Tim Beckman’s squad needed to win two games to gain bowl eligibility; the team’s primary goal for the 2014 season.

For three quarters, it looked like the Illini might actually notch number five, but the fourth quickly reminded the 50,373 frozen fans (and the thousands of fraternity and sorority members choosing to watch the game at Joe’s and Red Lion instead) that both wins and bowl games in the Tim Beckman era of Illinois Football are not easy to come by.

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2013 Big Ten Football Power Rankings: Hip Hop MCs Edition

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Can’t leave Big Ten football alone the game needs me. Notorious B.I.G. once said that he raps about the ghetto because that’s what he knows. And…”if I worked at McDonald’s, I’d be rapping about Big Macs and fries.”

You write and talk what you know and live. And I know Big Ten football. We’re still a ways away from Big Ten football media days. Well, less than two weeks now. The preseason is indeed here, time for some WAY TOO Early Big Ten football power rankings

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#34 Iowa Hawkeyes: College Football 77 in 77

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One thing I won’t get to do this year when writing about Iowa Hawkeyes football is say Marvin MCNUTT! Because the greatest receiver in UI history and funnest name to say is now gone, haven re-written the Iowa City record book along the way.

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Iowa Hawkeyes name new defensive coordinator

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Phil Parker, DBs coach for the Iowa Hawkeyes the past 13 seasons, has gotten a major promotion- to defensive coordinator.  Kirk Ferentz announced late last night.

Parker, a member of the Iowa staff since Ferentz took over as head coach, replaces Norm Parker, who retired following this past season.  Phil Parker was named by Rivals.com in March, 2011, as a first team member of its College Football Assistant Coach Dream Team.

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Hawkeyes Leading Rusher Marcus Coker Leaves Program

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The Iowa Hawkeyes announced that sophomore running back Marcus Coker withdrew his application to enroll in spring semester.  He also asked for a release from his football scholarship and it was granted.

In other words, he is no longer part of the college football program.

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Iowa Hawkeyes Star Riley Reiff Declares for NFL Draft

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Iowa Hawkeyes junior offensive tackle Riley Reiff announced he will enter the 2012 NFL Draft, forgoing his final year of college football eligibility.

He figures to be a first round pick, possibly going in the top 10-15.

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Kirk Ferentz Not Taking K.C. Chiefs Job, Staying at Iowa

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Iowa Hawkeyes coach Kirk Ferentz, the longest tenured in the Big Ten, reiterated Wednesday his long-term plans to remain the head coach in Iowa City.

Apparently, his boy Scott Pioli wasn’t able to lure him away to the Kansas City Chiefs, like early speculation indicated. Now, if it were the New England Patriots who knows?

Anyways Ferentz released a statement:

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Iowa Hawkeyes Suspend Star RB Marcus Coker for Bowl Game

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Iowa Hawkeyes tailback Marcus Coker goes from 2010 Insight Bowl MVP to 2011 Insight Bowl suspendee today.

Last year he set Iowa bowl records for rushing attempts (33) and rushing yards (219) in the 27-24 win over Missouri. Hopefully, he also got to see the Grand  Canyon last year, because he will not be traveling with the team to Arizona.

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Next K.C. Chiefs Coach: Iowa Hawkeyes Kirk Ferentz?

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Now that Todd Haley has been canned by the Kansas City Chiefs front office, defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel wil serve as Head Coach in the interim. His first game will be versus the undefeated Green Bay Packers- have fun with that.

So who replaces Haley in the long term? Chiefs general manager Scott Pioli has reportedly told people that Iowa’s Kirk Ferentz is the leading candidate.

How much money will it take to get Ferentz to leave the Hawkeyes program?

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Nebraska Cornhuskers-Iowa Hawkeyes Rivalry: Tom Osborne is Excited

On the last Friday of November in Lincoln, Neb., the college football teams from the University of Iowa and the University of Nebraska will square off in the first of what is expected to be a long and competitive and entertaining rivalry between one of the Big Ten Conference’s original member institutions and the league’s most recent addition.
It could be the beginning of a huge rivalry between the Cornhuskers and the Hawkeyes.

“It is the last regular season game, so it may have implications on the Big Ten title game which will be a week later. I have not spoken to the players on how much it will mean but it will be like every game,” said Nebraska Athletic Director Tom Osborne.

Penn State is “Radioactive” to Bowl Selection Committees; Big 10 Bowl Projections

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“They’re radioactive,” a bowl official told Herb Gould of the Chicago Sun-Times yesterday. “[Bowls] wanted Joe Paterno ‘s last game, not a nightmare.”

The Nittany Lions finish the season at Ohio State and Wisconsin. The OSU game looks like a toss-up, and the Badgers will likely destroy them. That season ending tilt is looking like it’ll be the Leaders division championship game, with the winner going to Indianapolis. So Penn State still has a chance to go to the Big Ten title game and the Rose Bowl; although it looks much less likely given how they performed Saturday.

Remember, the bowl selection process is arbitrary and capricious to say the least, and since PSU is a branding and PR nightmare right now, they could fall to the Ticketcity or  Meineke Bowl. If it comes to that, hopefully the school will do the right thing and decline their bid. Even if it doesn’t come to that, and PSU ends up in one of the top five slots, they should do the right thing and decline their invitation.

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Big 10 Bowl Projections; Much Hinges on Wisconsin Badgers

When looking at the Big Ten conference standings, and trying to figure out the hierarchy for the college football bowl system, I can’t help but think of one of my favorite lines from the ’80s movie “Fletch.”

“I’d say we’re in a gray area.”

“How gray?”

“Charcoal.”

We do know this however- the Big Ten bellcow is still Wisconsin (get it bellcow, dairy state?). The Badgers, last year’s Rose Bowl representative is still the favorite to go to Pasadena this year.

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