So much is being said about Northwestern's three freshmen -- Venric Mark, Adonis Smith and Tony Jones -- and how they fared at Minnesota last week that it's almost difficult not to get caught up in the hype. Remember: they are still freshmen, and freshmen make mistakes and are still learning what Big Ten college football is all about.
The freshmen talk came up at Monday's news conference at NU. Superback Drake Dunsmore, lineman Vince Browne and linebacker Ben Johnson were asked who is the fastest among the three young players. Trying to be diplomatic, the three vets agreed that the freshmen are all gifted and talented in their own way. But Dunsmore did note that, technically, Jones has the fastest 100-meter time of the three. And Johnson picked Mark as the winner if the three raced each other.
* The Daily Illini has reported that all 500 student tickets for the Nov. 20 Illinois-Northwestern game at Wrigley Field sold out in two hours at Assembly Hall Tuesday morning. The tickets were only available for student season ticket holders. The DI reports that Illinois' allotment of tickets to the general public had sold out in June.
* Best quote: "I can't give you a cookbook here and tell you what we're doing." -- coach Pat Fitzgerald on how he plans to use Mark, Jones and Smith the remainder of the season.
* Fitzgerald told WSCR-The Score Wednesday afternoon that the Wildcats will be wearing Zak Kustok's and Sarah Kustok's initials on their helmets during Saturday's game against Purdue, in support of the Kustok's whose mother was killed last week.
* Saturday marks the midway point of the season. NU has a bye week next week.