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2016 B1G Football Discussion

Starting this off right, with an edsbs article:


That game happened to be my nine year old daughter’s first live Big Ten football experience
and honestly, in an effort to minimize your negative impact on what was supposed to be a really fun day, I just let her have some of my beer.
- A Concerned Mom

The about banning football in Indiana is the best though.
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@CFPBuckeye knows from experience.

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I tried to torture myself and watch the spring games of the contenders. It's hard to take anything substantive away from it, but I have all kinds of opinions without substance on other things, so here are my thoughts on the B1G this fall:

1) The B1G East will be the best division in football because of its top 3 teams, but it will be called "2nd best" because... well, you know. But the Buckeyes, Sparty, and scUM will battle it out. The Buckeyes will be young, but the most talented team. Sparty can beat a lot of people if they can get the game played the way they want to play - and if a hurricane blows in - and if the opponent's offensive staff decides to not give the ball to their stud RB - but I digress. ScUM should be another recruiting class and year of development away from being B1G champion worthy, but things could come around faster or slower for them. I still see Penn State as a middling threat. They aren't going to win the division, but you don't take lightly playing them in Happy Valley. Indiana? I'm not sure they recruit well enough to be any better than 4th-5th. It's hard to win games with great offense and horrific defense. Rutgers and Maryland have the dueling new coaches to see who can pull out of the cellar. Which coach can keep the most players home and away from Harbaugh and Meyer? Probably neither, but I'm pulling for Ash.

2) Sparty is the defending champ. Gotta give credit to them. They beat Ohio State in Cbus, and regardless of the weather and coaching brain farts, they won the right to narrowly beat an over-rated Iowa and get destroyed by Alabama. When I watch Sparty, I see Tressel's OSU teams, but I would point out that while Dantonio has been able to bring in a higher level of talent, he will probably never be able to recruit at the level Tressel was. But both have multiple offense with a heavy emphasis on running the ball and controlling the clock, reliance on stingy defense, rejoicing to punt, and doing back flips over kicking FGs. That formula has won a lot of games for Tressel and Dantonio . However, it has also caused many miraculous escapes and some inexplicable losses to teams that didn't deserve to be on the same field. Sparty has been able to avoid a lot of upsets of this type, but I think they are due. You could say that the loss at Nebraska is an example, but I think they are due to drop one or two to likes of Indiana, Maryland, or Illinois.

3) The West is the red-headed stepchild of the B1G. Last year aside, Wisconsin has the best program on that side. I believe Chryst will have the Badgers doing what they did under Alvarez. They won't win a natty, but if you don't like physical football, they will run over you like grandma was by the reindeer, and win the B1G. Nebraska should be the best program on that side, but this isn't the Huskers I grew up with. They can't draw enough big talent there, and Mike Riley is that guy you can't help but like, but mostly it's because you sense he will never beat Ohio State or anyone else of consequence. I will never buy in to Iowa (and I went to school there). Ferentz gets a team with a few stars and some hard-working no names every 5 years, wins a few he shouldn't, and loses some he couldn't win, gets declared COY, and then regresses back to what Iowa is. With the QB back and 16 starters overall, lots of "experts" are picking Iowa to win the West - forgetting that Iowa is only allowed one good season every 5 years. Northwestern is a team that's hard to not root for: the nerdy engineers with tape over the bridge of their glasses can play some ball. They are smart kids. If they have a couple of talented players at key positions, and some other things fall perfectly into place, they can be magical every 10-20 years. Then we come to Minnesota. Glen Mason is pretty much the coaching standard up there. Think about that. They try hard, their coach was a likable, hard-working fella who had seizures, so now we get Tracy Claeys. OK. Let's move on to Illinois who has recruited with BG and CMU, but has Lovie Smith at coach. That will be really interesting to watch - whether Lovie is stronger than all of the things that keep Illinois playing Illinois-type football. And last, we have Hazell's Boilermakers. I love Hazell, but this is not working. Darell has been winning recruiting battles with Capital, Otterbein, and Kenyon.

East: 1) OSU 2) scUM 3) Sparty 4) PSU 5) Indiana 6) Rutgers 7) Maryland

West: 1) Wisky 2) Nebraska 3) Iowa 4) Northwestern 5) Minnesota 6) Illinois 7) Purdue
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