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May 23, 2013

Ranking the Big Ten: Wide receiver

As Nebraska moves into its third season in the Big Ten Conference, HuskerOnline.com will get you ready with ranking analysis pieces breaking down each position in the league. Today, we look at the wide receiver position in the Big Ten heading into 2013.

1. Allen Robinson, Penn State, 6-3, 204, Jr.
There might not be a more NFL-ready receiver in the Big Ten this season than Penn State junior Allen Robinson. A consensus first-team all-conference selection last season, Robinson was far and away the Nittany Lions' go-to target in the passing game and was head and shoulders above the rest of the league with 77 catches for 1013 yards and 11 touchdowns. Quarterback remains a major issue for PSU going into the fall, but whoever wins the job will have one of the best wide outs in the country at his disposal.
2. Jared Abbrederis, Wisconsin, 6-2, 188, Sr.
The other consensus first-team All-Big Ten selection at wide receiver along with Robinson last season, Jared Abbrederis comes into his senior season at Wisconsin with a chance to climb even higher up the Badgers' all-time receiving charts. He will once again be the top target for whichever quarterback emerges as the starter for new head coach Gary Andersen, and his status as one of the best return men in the conference makes Abbrederis an even more valuable piece to Wisconsin's success in 2013.
3. Kenny Bell, Nebraska, 6-1, 185, Jr.
Many people - particularly Nebraska fans - felt strongly that Kenny Bell did more than enough last season to deserve first-team all-conference honors, but he had to settle for the second-team instead. All Bell did in 2012 was set nearly every school receiving record for a sophomore with 50 catches for 863 yards and eight touchdowns, marking the second year in a row he's led the Huskers in all three categories. Nebraska has plenty of weapons to work with on offense this season, but Bell stands as the best of the bunch and should only continue to add to his impressive resume.
4. Corey Brown, Ohio State, 6-0, 187, Sr.
Corey Brown, a.k.a. "Philly", flourished in his first season under Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer's system, putting up 60 catches for 669 yards and three touchdowns en route to being named a second-team All-Big Ten selection. Expectations are even high for Brown in 2013, as Meyer himself said following the Buckeyes' spring game that he thought Brown would be a legitimate first-team all-conference candidate. He has one of the best dual-threat quarterbacks in the country in Braxton Miller throwing to him, so it could be another big year for Brown.
5. Jeremy Gallon, Michigan, 5-8, 178, Sr.
After getting just honorable mention All-Big Ten honors last season, Jeremy Gallon capped up his junior year with nine catches for 145 yards and two touchdowns, all career highs, in Michigan's loss South Carolina in the Outback Bowl. With Devin Gardner back under center and projected to have a breakout year, Gallon should be in store for his best season yet as a Wolverine. Despite his size, he has the ability to catch practically any ball thrown his way because of his impressive hands and vertical leap.

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