2012 Season Preview Big Ten Illinois - OMLawdog After back to back national championships Illinois is looking poised for another run after being dealt a favorable conference schedule. The fighting Illini won a lot of games last year without the help of their prolific offense and will look to continue the success on both sides of the ball this year. Coach OMlawdog enjoyed a stingy defense last year that surrendered less than 300 yards on the ground. What to watch for on Offense: QB Marcus Mason PS #11 is now gone and the Illini must look for an answer at signal caller in FR(RS) Clarence Manigat PS #6. HB Michael Burke PS #11ATH led a powerful ground attack with 804 yards and has tremendous speed. What to watch for on Defense: Suffcation. Don't be surprised if opposing offensive players pass out from lack of air as this defensive unit is one of the best. They do not allow you to run and then take the ball away from you when you pass. So(RS) MLB Aaron Gary PS #3 is the leader of a defense that has reloaded this year. Best player: Jr WR Cedric Smart PS# 1ATH will look to open up the opposing secondary and has next-level moves. Breakout star: Fr(RS) DE Travis Phillips PS #3 is 6'5" 199 lbs and is by far the best pro prospect on a team loaded with combine invitation holders. He will be a role player this year, but could burst onto the scene with his game changing ability. Iowa - Drifterbub Iowa got to its first BCS bowl game after winning the Sugar Bowl last year and looks to build on that success despite the loss of All-World HB Jamie Curry. Iowa boasts one of the best receiving corps in the nation led by 2010 Heisman winner Sr WR Courtney Hill PS #7. Iowa ran the table in conference play and was denied a conference title after losing a tie-breaker to Illinois on the count of BCS standings. What to watch for on Offense: How do you replace Curry? Jr Marcus Poole PS #2 will try to answer the call with a well rounded skill set. Iowa will need to get the ball into the hands of its playmaking receivers and someone will need to step up and take the QB job. Jr John Bryant PS#3 has a slight edge over stud FR(Rs) Robert Reid but word out of Iowa city says that Bryant will have a short leash. What to watch for on Defense: Sr OLB Lance Bell PS #2 returns for his last year in black and gold and leads a defense that is rebuilding. Last years Russell Athletics top recruit in the nation FS Matt Atkins PS #1 (4.18 forty) will add much needed playmaking ability to the secondary accompanied with true frosh CB Donald Scott PS #3. Best Player: WR Courtney Hill will look to land his third straight Belitnekoff Award. Break out star: FS Matt Atkins is a beast. Wisconsin - BBJ The Badgers had a fall from grace last year after winning the 2010 national championship and Big Ten title and will look to dish it back out to the chins of their conference opponents. All-American Jr HB Timothy Watkins PS #3 looks to return to his 2514 yard 37 TD self from 2010 when he won both the Maxwell and Walker award. Sr TE Calvin Leonard PS #12 will lead a very balanced offensive attack and will look to give defensive coordinators fits with his athletic ability. What to watch for on Offense: Healthy servings of Watkins, Watkins and more Watkins. Wisconsin hasn't had a back this dangerous since Ron Dayne and will look for Watkins to have his third straight 1800+ yard season. What to watch for on Defense: His name is Westphal and your better off running to the side of the field he is not on. Standing at 6'7" 248 lbs, he is a monster for any offensive linemen to deal with. He won the 2011 Lambardi award after having a twenty sack season. Look for those numbers to increase with an improved Badger offensive attack will allow for more passing situation by opposing offenses. Big Ten QB will all rejoice when his eligibility runs out this year. Best Player: DE Tyler Westphal will be playing on sundays for a long time to come. Breakout Star: So(RS) OLB Lance Jack PS #1 will meet ball carriers at the line with a smile on his face. Michigan State - Whatupguy After a successful tenure at Ohio State coach Whatupguy will be charged with the task of bringing the Spartans of Michigan state out of the Big Ten cellar. The Spartans will have to travel to Iowa City and face a fiery Wisconsin squad at home, but luckily avoids a possible mismatch with Illinois. What to watch for on Offense: Michigan State does not return a player who has ever taken a snap in college and will be forced to look at unproven talent at the QB position. WR Keshawn Martin will lead an unproven offensive unit in the new scheme and should have a good year. What to watch for on Defense: All American DT Anthony Woods is the top returning tackler and will look to really improve a defense that surrendered a lot of everything last year. Best Player: WR Keshawn Martin Breakout Star: HB Aaron Martin is Keshawn's younger brother and will look to have a big year on the ground after having a great spring.