Monday, September 8, 2014

Big 10? More like Small 10

First off, there are 14 teams in the BIG 10 conference, so they already got it wrong when it comes to the name of the conference, but that's besides the point.

For someone like myself who has grown up debating with people about the BIG 10 and PAC 12 on which conference is better, you now have no room to stand on if you are a fan of the BIG 10 conference especially after this past weekend.

Ohio State, Nebraska, Michigan State, Wisconsin. All teams that have severely dropped out of the top 25 in what used to be one of the most highly touted conferences in all the land. They now only have three teams in the top 25 and none of which are inside the top 10. This past weekend and even today has proven that the BIG 10 is in for some serious evaluation when it comes to the strength of their conference and where it will be three plus years from now.

Ohio State couldn't win at home vs Virginia Tech, Nebraska looked suspect against another small FBS squad, and Michigan got shut out for the first time in 30 years. The only teams that seem to be holding up their end of the bargain are Michigan State and Wisconsin and even they can't compete with the likes of the SEC or the PAC 12 as this first two weeks has proven. Granted, they made the effort and looked decent in their matchups against those two power conferences, however, will they be relevant when they dive back into conference play and everybody else is dropping like flies? Their resumes will severely lack what other power conferences provide when it comes to structure, power, and longevity. At this point, it's looking like an undefeated school in a small conference at the end of the year could (and should) leap the BIG 10 if the BIG 10 were to beat each other up this season.

Yes, the BIG 10 has three ranked teams right now (#22 Ohio State, #18 Wisconsin, & #13 Michigan State) but the rest of the conference? They can barely keep up with a Wheaties box. With where college football is headed with this power conference combination they are trying to create to fatten more wallets, how the heck is the BIG 10 going to walk into those meetings at the end of this year and bid to be a part of the mega conference talks? They can't compete outside of their conference! What happened to the BIG 10 prior to 2013? They would consistently have 4-5 ranked teams coming out of that conference every year and make a large case to be in the National Championship. That looks like it will take years to reconstruct.

At this point, making the Outback Bowl looks like a chore, and if they beat each other up this season, their case across the country for being a top conference will fall faster than Isaac Newton could fathom. Just look at BIG 10 scores from this past weekend, and the bowl record of BIG 10 teams the past 10 years, don't tell me how this conference should even be mentioned with other power conferences in the college football landscape.

Apparently today, they were ranked 5th in the power index which rates conferences throughout college football. Oh, and did I forget to mention that Penn State is now allowed to go back to playing Bowl Games? I know that has nothing to do with the conference strength, but it doesn't help when you have child rape cases hanging over one of the most historic programs in college football history and now they being allowed to go back to play in meaningful bowl games? BIG 10, you are looking kind of sketchy these days, just keep your head up because at this point, just pray your bottom doesn't land you out of the major conversations in being relevant for the long term view of college football.

See you next week!

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