Badgers pull away from Gophers, punch B1G ticket to Indy


Alas, there will be no repeat in the Big Ten championship game.  And, for whatever playoff hopes the conference still holds out given today’s events, that might not be a bad thing.

Trailing 17-3 late in the second quarter, No. 14 Wisconsin scored 24 unanswered points to help drop No. 18 Minnesota 34-24 and claim the Big Ten West division title.  UW now advances to the title game next Saturday against Ohio State at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.

This will mark the Badgers third title-game appearance in the four-year history of the event.  This clinching win, though, didn’t come as easily as some expected.

The Gophers looked to be in complete control through the first 25 minutes of the game.  A mini-run in the last 4:39 of the first half sliced the deficit to 17-13 and gave the home team considerable momentum heading into halftime.  That momentum extended into the second half as the Badgers outscored their opponents 21-7 the rest of the way to win going away.

Melvin Gordon, one of the favorites to win the Heisman, was held in check through two quarters of play, rushing for just 55 yards on 14 first-half carries.  That changed in the second half as Gordon finished with 151 yards and a touchdown on 29 carries.  He also caught a first-half touchdown pass that helped fuel the comeback.

The Gophers had cut the Badgers lead to 27-24 with 7:32 remaining on a Mitch Leidner two-yard touchdown run, but a six-play drive on the ensuing possession covered 65 yards and culminated with a 17-yard touchdown pass from Joel Stave to Robert Wheelwright. That marked Wheelwright’s first catch this season and first career touchdown reception.

Gordon did sustain an ankle injury late in the game, although the severity is not known.  He did limp off the field under his own power, and didn’t return.  According to the broadcast, however, he could’ve returned if necessary.

Joel Stave also played a solid game under center for UW, throwing for 215 yards and a pair of touchdowns.  Perhaps more importantly, Stave wasn’t intercepted.

Eastern Kentucky WR shot in bar dispute

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Eastern Kentucky wide receiver Cameron Catron was shot in the early morning hours of Sunday following a dispute outside a bar.

According to WKYT-TV, Catron and an unidentified man were fighting outside the Two Keys Tavern in Lexington, Ky., when the other man ran to his vehicle, returned with a gun and shot Catron. It is not known where he was shot.

The suspect, described as wearing a blue shirt with dreadlocked hair culminating in frosted tips, is still at large.

“He’s one of the biggest hearted guys I know. Whoever done that to him was just really in a bad place right now,” teammate Gunner Slone told the station.

A Belfry, Ky., native, Catron was a redshirt freshman in 2018; he appeared in two games on special teams.

Catron has already undergone two surgeries to remove the bullet and repair internal damage. A social media post by his mother indicated he is out of ICU and able to walk a short distance.

Former Ole Miss DB, Nebraska LB Breon Dixon headed to JuCo

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Breon Dixon has yet to really make a mark in college football, but his closet has become well stocked. A 4-star prospect out of Suwanee, Ga., Dixon signed with Ole Miss and enrolled in January of 2017, but left quickly thereafter.

Given a waiver to play immediately as part of the Hugh Freeze explosion, Dixon was enrolled at Nebraska within 365 days of originally enrolling at Ole Miss. He appeared in four games on special teams for the Huskers this season, but by this spring he was no longer a Cornhusker, either.

In May, the Omaha World-Herald contacted Iowa Western Community College head coach Scott Strohmeier, who said Dixon would become a Reiver. Now, Dixon has confirmed that himself.

He is expected to enroll in classes in July and compete for IWCC this fall, with the expectation he’ll look for another four-year university in the winter. Strohmeier told the World-Herald he didn’t expect Dixon to re-enroll at Nebraska, meaning the player could be looking for a fourth school in as many years come 2020.

Ex-Arizona State, Ohio State DE Darius Slade now enrolled at USF

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It appears Darius Slade has found himself yet another college football home.

In early February, it was confirmed that Slade had taken the first step in moving on from Arizona State by placing his name into the NCAA transfer database. A little over four months later, it’s now being reported that the defensive end is enrolled at South Florida.

For what it’s worth, a USF official declined to confirm Slade’s addition to the roster and the lineman isn’t yet listed on the football program’s online roster.

Slade, who originally began his collegiate career at Ohio State before transferring and landing at ASU prior to the start of the 2017 season, played in 10 games in 2018 after sitting out the previous year to satisfy NCAA transfer rules.

As a graduate transfer, Slade would be eligible to play for the Bulls immediately in 2019.

Louisville adds Marshall’s leading sacker as grad transfer

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On the same day we noted an addition to Marshall’s roster, there’s been a development regarding one of the football program’s personnel subtractions earlier this offseason.

Utilizing his personal Twitter account, Ty Tyler (pictured, No. 1) announced that he is “honored and overwhelmed to announce I am committed to [the] University of Louisville.” Earlier this offseason, the defensive lineman opted to enter his name into the NCAA transfer database after four years with the Thundering Herd.

As Tyler will be coming to the Cardinals as a graduate transfer, he’ll be eligible to play immediately for the school in 2019. The upcoming season will serve as the lineman’s final year of eligibility.

This past season, Tyler led the Thundering Herd with eight sacks and tied for second on the team with nine tackles for loss. He leaves Huntington having been credited with 15.5 tackles for loss and 10 sacks in 35 career games, 20 of which were starts.