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Big Ten Football Morning Coffee: Everyone Pay Attention to Mark Dantonio!

ANN ARBOR, MI - OCTOBER 25:  Roland Martin #73 of the Michigan State Spartans celebrates with his Head Coach Mark Dantonio after the game against the Michigan Wolverines on October 25, 2008 at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Michigan State won the game 35-21. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
Adam JacobiBig Ten Football Lead WriterApril 19, 2012

Rise and shine, friends. Here's what's going down in the Big Ten today.

Mark Dantonio has caused a minor kerfuffle with this comment to ESPN: "We've beat Michigan the last four years. So where's the threat?"

First of all, it's "beaten." Michigan State has beaten Michigan the last four years. I thought coaches were supposed to be role models.

Second, and more importantly, no. We're not going to play this game and ask whether this will motivate Michigan to beat Michigan State in 2012. We're not going to analyze the rivalry anew because of this. If Dantonio wants to troll Michigan, that's his right, but let's not start pretending this is important in any way, shape or form.

Penn State's expenses in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky scandal have topped $7.5 million as of March, according to the Daily Collegian. The fees include "an internal investigation and crisis communications, legal services, externally initiated investigations and other expenses," according to the report.

This is not a situation where anyone should expect any sort of monetary return on investment with this type of spending, of course.

That said, Penn Staters also have every right to be wary of the fact that the school has paid over $5 million to former FBI director Louis Freeh for an independent report on PSU's response to the scandal from 1998 to present time, and to ask exactly what that money has paid for and how.

Mel Kiper Jr. told the Detroit Free Press that the draft prospects of former Wolverines TE Kevin Koger and WR Junior Hemingway are hampered by Denard Robinson's, um, "inconsistent" (our word, not his, but we believe in charity here) throwing ability and its subsequent effect on the receivers' production.

This tears me.

On one hand, you want to say, "Why didn't you look at the freaking tape?" when some workout warrior goes way too high in the NFL draft respective to his work on the field. And this happens a lot, especially considering the inevitable overvaluing that gets placed on the annual combine kabuki.

On the other, let's say you put former Missouri TE Michael Egnew (an absolute receiving maniac) on Michigan instead over the last two years. There's no way he comes close to the production he achieved at Mizzou, right?

And there's no way he even goes in the fourth round this weekend if Denard's the one throwing to him, right?

Speaking of tight ends (I promise this is not a lead-in to a dirty joke), Wisconsin's offense began resembling something like its regular self when TE Jacob Pedersen returned to practice, compared to an awful Saturday scrimmage open to the media, where Bret Bielema said after the fact that up to six 2012 offensive starters didn't participate for whatever reason.

Mark my words: There's going to be a legitimate battle between Pedersen and Jared Abbrederis as to who the primary receiver is in the Wisconsin offense in 2012.

If that sounds far-fetched, please remember the roles that not only Pedersen, but Garrett Graham and Travis Beckum before him have played in Bielema's offense at Wisconsin.

The Badger TE role is a particularly prestigious position, and Pedersen's presence proves it. Parasol.

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