It was a surprising weekend all around in Big Ten baseball. The top series of the week was the Nebraska - Maryland series; both teams ranked and picked to battle for the top of the conference.
Nebraska went into Maryland one of the hottest teams in the country, fresh off a homestand which saw the Huskers compile a 15-1 record. Nebraska left Maryland swept and humiliated, dropping from a tie for first in the early conference season to sixth place.
Iowa took control of first place in the conference after sweeping Purdue, while Illinois moved into second with their sweep of Northwestern. Iowa pulled their sweep in somewhat dramatic fashion (as did Maryland), scoring eight runs in the eighth inning of the final game.
Just as surprising, Indiana dropped to 10th place after losing a series at home to Michigan. Bottom line: the top three in the conference all swept their series this past weekend.
Back to the Nebraska - Maryland series. The Friday game was postponed and BTN didn't broadcast either of the games on Saturday, much to the chagrin of Husker baseball fans. Perhaps it was for the best, though, as Nebraska's offense largely disappeared for a lot of the weekend as the Huskers were outhit in all three games.
Husker pitching was.... not good. As a team, Nebraska dropped from first place in team ERA (2.30) to third (2.65). Chase Sinclair lasted only 5.2 innings, Kyle Kubat 4.2, and Derek Burkamper 5.1.
The good news is that Nebraska faces Minnesota at home this coming weekend, and the Gophers are really struggling this season.
In other B1G baseball news, it was announced last week that Northwestern head coach Paul Stevens would retire after the 2015 season. Stevens has been the Wildcat head coach since 1988. Northwestern is in process of upgrading their baseball facilities, and now it looks like they'll be upgrading their staff as well.
Late-inning heroics propel Ohio State to another win - Land-Grant Holy Land
The Buckeyes showed their grit once more, pulling out a last at-bat win over Penn State
A wind-blown popup allowed Nebraska to grab a 5-0 lead. But the Terps chipped back, primarily through home runs by Martir, Wade, and Smith. The Terps scored the winning run on an errant throw, and Maryland had swept the Cornhuskers.
We throw the word around too often probably, but he's as close to an offensive genius as you can be.
Mack Brown is genuinely a pretty nice guy despite having coached for Texas, but boy did he lay it on thick in his visit to Nebraska.
Husker Football Practice Updates: Is No News Good News?
The biggest news came with Carter, who will miss the rest of spring after an x-ray revealed a potential foot fracture that will require surgery. Riley said he’ll be ready for summer work, though.
Rutgers Athletics: Where could the money come from? - On the Banks
Aside from the grammatical incorrectness of the headline, it is a good question. There's no magic formula and there's not a pile of cash in a long forgotten file cabinet. Where do you look for funds?
Norsk_Gopher shares some links, the remaining spring practice schedule, and shares some of his own observations.
Just to throw this out there for discussion.... can you imagine what will happen were we to lose to Minnesota for the third year in a row?
For the National Title: Wisconsin vs. Duke Preview - Off Tackle Empire
Can Wisconsin avenge the early season loss and bring home the National Title?
Andrew Harrison apologizes for Frank Kaminsky comment - Bucky's 5th Quarter
After being caught with a hot microphone at a press conference Saturday night, Kentucky guard Andrew Harrison made amends.
Final Four 2015: Wisconsin forward Frank Kaminsky wins Naismith Trophy, NABC Player of the Year - Bucky's 5th Quarter
"Frank the Tank" not just continues to roll over competition, but now adds two more pieces of hardware to his trophy mantle.