Last week will go down as the most exciting game in the three-year history of our Big Ten fantasy league. Exciting, of course, being a relative term for such a nerdy endeavor.
Adam's Trombone Shorties nipped my The One Who Knocks 164-163. Yep, you can't get any closer than that. And had Michigan and Northwestern gone into another overtime, I probably would have won.
But the Shorties have become a juggernaut, winning five straight to take a 7-5 season lead. Adam has clinched at least a tie for the year, and I'd have to win each of the final two weeks just to salvage a deadlock.
In Week 12, the Shorties got big performances from Braxton Miller (38 points), Nathan Scheelhaase (31) and James White (26). I had the fantasy monster that was Carlos Hyde for 56 points, while Devin Gardner chipped in 22 thanks to those three overtimes in Iowa City. But it wasn't enough, by one point.
So we're on to the waiver wire, and I need some major help to slow down those Shorties:
Rationale: A reach? Perhaps. But desperate times call for desperate measures. Relying on the Gardner-to-Gallon combo has killed me, and the weather in Iowa City could make passing tough on Saturday. Hull has put up 34 and 16 points the last two weeks as Scheelhaase's new go-to guy, and the Illini should find success against Purdue. Plus, if he does well, I can raise both my arms and shout "Steve Hull!"
Rationale: Indiana's offensive struggles last week and the presence of Ohio State cornerback Bradley Roby concern me a bit about Latimer on Saturday. I'm a little torn about which Buckeye receiver to choose, but Smith had a big game last week and should put up nice numbers against Indiana's porous defense.
Brian adds Wisconsin's defense and drops Penn State's defense
Rationale: My strategy of taking whichever defense is playing Purdue has been pretty effective, but I don't really trust the Illinois D. So I'll go with what has been the second-best defense in the conference statistically and take my chances with the Badgers at Minnesota.
Adam adds Michigan's kickers and drops Wisconsin's kickers
Rationale: I'm sliding in to grab Michigan here after last week's wild field-goal try at the end of regulation. The Wolverines might be struggling to score touchdowns, but Brendan Gibbons should have some chances in Saturday's likely field-goal fest in Iowa City.
The Trombone Shorties (Adam)
Ohio State QB Braxton Miller
Illinois QB Nathan Scheelhaase
Nebraska RB Ameer Abdullah
Wisconsin RB James White
Wisconsin WR Jared Abbrederis
Ohio State WR Devin Smith
Michigan State defense
The One Who Knocks (Brian)
Michigan QB Devin Gardner
Penn State QB Christian Hackenberg
Wisconsin RB Melvin Gordon
Ohio State RB Carlos Hyde
Illinois WR Steve Hull
Penn State WR Allen Robinson
Ohio State kickers