Big Ten Roundtable: Bouncing Back At Penn State, Is Michigan For Real?

It's been a long time since we've had a top-five showdown in the Big Ten that didn't include Ohio State and Michigan. And when then No. 3 Iowa and No. 4 Penn State got together last Saturday at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City, it was the first time that's happened since 1962.

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That's 59 years ago. And we might be talking about that game — a dramatic come-from-behind 23-20 victory for Iowa — for another 59 years. The Hawkeyes' win has moved them up to No. 2 in the country now, but the Penn State faithful are still fuming, thinking that if quarterback Sean Clifford doesn't get hurt, then they're unbeaten and No. 2, not Iowa.

"I really feel like Penn State would have been the No. 2 team in the country and Penn State wins that game by 10, 14 points if Sean Clifford doesn't get hurt,'' said Mark Wogenrich, our AllPennState.com website that covers Penn State for our Sports Illustrated/FanNation network. "They were moving the ball as well as anybody that Iowa's played thus far. Sean Clifford was in a rhythm and he was delivering the ball where he wanted to. 

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"He can beat teams downfield. I've never seen a game turn on a dime like it did when he went down. They were 5-for-5 on third down when he was in there, and 0-for-10 after he left. It was a thorough unraveling. They had eight false start penalties, including three in a row, that I've never seen before.''

There's plenty of discussion about that game in the 30-plus minute podcast, hosted by Big Ten publisher Tom Brew. Brew had joked last week that he picked "Kinnick Stadium'' to win the game, that the teams were evenly matched and the crowd would make the difference. He was prophetic, especially considering all those noise-induced false start penalties.

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picture">>Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh has the Wolverines off to a 6-0 start so far, but the toughest games on their schedule all still lie ahead. (USA TODAY Sports)

Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh has the Wolverines off to a 6-0 start so far, but the toughest games on their schedule all still lie ahead. (USA TODAY Sports)

Also joining the podcast is WolverineDigest.com publisher Brandon Brown. His website covers all things Michigan on our Sports Illustrated/FanNation network. He breaks down Michigan's 6-0 start so far and talks about how good the Wolverines really are. 

"How good are they? That's the million-dollar question,'' Brown said. "They've done what they've supposed to through six games. We thought that Wisconsin and Washington would be legitimate, and it's turned out that they're not. But they've won, and Michigan teams in years past have lost those close games like at Nebraska in the past.

"The last four games of the season, that's when the rubber hits the road.''

Brown also said the pressure on Jim Harbaugh is certainly easing thanks to the wins, but whether this season can't be considered a success unless wins over Michigan State or Penn State or Ohio State happen down the stretch.

"If you finish 9-3, or even 10-2, what have you really accomplished?'' Brown said. "You've got to play well down the stretch, really strap it up those last four weeks of the season. I think he's doing a pretty damn good job. They're following their leaders, and they're all buying in. Everybody is saying it's different. You say show me, and through six games, they have.''    

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There are so many more great comments, so enjoy the show, and share it with your friends.

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Watch the entire Big Ten Roundtable podcast here

Here is the entire second episode of the Big Ten Roundtable podcast. Watch it here.

Here's how to follow our Big Ten coverage

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    Nebraska coverage on the Sports Illustrated/FanNation network,

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  • BIG TEN ROUNDTABLE (Episode 1): Host Tom Brew talks about the Big Ten showdown with Iowa and Penn State, and discusses Ohio State's hot streak and Northwestern's struggles with publishers Brendan Gulick (BuckeyesNow.com) and Lauren Withrow (WildcatsDaily.com). To watch the first show,

    CLICK HERE

    Source : https://www.si.com/college/indiana/football/big-ten-roundtable-podcast-episode-2-penn-state-moves-on-is-michigan-for-real

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