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Big Ten 2007 Spring Games Wrapup
Posted May 1, 2007

Ohio State honored Virginia Tech at the spring game, in front of 75,000 fans interesting in seeing the new reloaded offense. John Harris provides all the quick updates of what happened in the spring games continuing with the Big Ten.

By John Harris
2007 Preseason Lookaheads - Big Ten

Illinois – Perhaps the two most important recruits in Ron Zook’s tenure, sophomore quarterback Juice Williams and true freshman wide receiver Arrelious Benn, proved to the 10,000 in attendance that this offense may be ready for prime time.  The two hooked up on three pass plays of 30 + yards getting the juices flowing, no pun intended, for what might be the scary sleeper team in the Big Ten race.

– The continued growth of quarterback Kellen Lewis was evident in the annual Crimson-Cream spring football game.  The sophomore paced the Cream squad with 259 yards passing, 107 of those to wide receiver James Hardy leading the way to a 27-26 victory.  The Crimson scored a late touchdown on a pass by quarterback Ben Chappell to cut the lead to one late in the game,  but the attempt for two failed.

Iowa – 19,000 fans showed up at Kinnick Stadium for the final spring scrimmage.  Most of them were there to take a long hard look at the quarterback battle taking place between Jake Christensen, Adam Farnsworth, Arvell Nelson and Richard Stanzi.  Christensen is the frontrunner in the battle to replace Drew Tate, but he didn’t stand out in the spring game.

Michigan State – New head coach Mark Dantonio has worked to instill a new, fresh attitude, which was evident in the MSU spring game, as the Green overtook the White 21-8.  Redshirt freshman quarterback Connor Dixon led the surprising Green team, completing 10-of-12 for 105 yards and a touchdown to tight end Kellen Davis.

Michigan – The Wolverines were team turmoil this spring losing key players to injury and/or suspension, but that didn’t stand in the way of an exciting 42-41 spring game won by the defense.  With many holes to fill, the defense registered the one point victory over Chad Henne’s potent offensive crew.

Minnesota – New head coach Tim Brewster showed off his new changes to 15,000 plus fans who filed into the Metrodome to see the Gopher offense battle the defense.  Tony Mortensen and Adam Weber completed 17-of-28 for 178 yards in the battle to replace Bryan Cupito.

Northwestern – In Northwestern’s version of an NHL shootout, the Purple and White spring game was decided by a field goal contest after the teams ended regulation tied at 14.  The Purple squad came out on top after Amado Villarreal knocked home a 35 yarder to win.  Wide receiver Eric Peterman was the offensive star, snaring ten passes for 104 yards.

Ohio State – Wearing VT decals in honor of the fallen students at Virginia Tech, the Buckeyes took the field in front of more than 75,000 fans in the Shoe.  Those in attendance saw the Gray come from behind to beat the Scarlet 17-9.  Down one late in the game, the Scarlet drove inside the red zone, but linebacker Larry Grant returned a forced fumble 80 yards for the final Gray score. Todd Boeckman cemented himself as the replacement for Troy Smith, at least going into fall practices.

Penn State – 71,000 fans came out to Beaver Stadium to see the White knock off the Blue 30-6.  The White defense was led by junior linebacker Tyrell Sales, who racked up 11 tackles, in a bid to replace former All-American Paul Posluszny.  Starting quarterback Anthony Morelli led the Blue to two early field goals, but the White responded with 30 unanswered points to finish on top.

Purdue – The offense dominated the defense in the annual Black and Gold game in West Lafayette putting up 86 points in a convincing win.  Running back Kory Sheets ran through the number one Purdue defense, piling up 105 yards on only six carries – one of which a 65 yard touchdown jaunt.

Wisconsin – The Cardinal, loaded with many of the Badger starting players, predictably trounced the White team 35-6.  However, most fans in the stands were glued to the performances of quarterbacks Tyler Donovan and Allen Evridge, each vying for the starting position.  Donovan finished seven of 11 for 95 yards, one touchdown and a pick, while Evridge was eight of 14 for 120 yards and two touchdowns. Neither has taken a firm grasp of the starting job.



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