Big Ten Comes Calling: Top Candidates for the Move

Giants27Analyst IDecember 16, 2009

PISCATAWAY, NJ - NOVEMBER 12:  Head coach Greg Schiano of the Rutgers Scarlet Knights leads his team on the field to play against the South Florida Bulls at Rutgers Stadium on November 12, 2009 in Piscataway, New Jersey.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

The Big Ten Conference is reportedly looking to add a 12th team and since the announcement you've heard teams from the South all the way to the Northeast being rumored to join.

Now to my top five options to join the Big Ten:


5. Missouri Tigers, Big 12

Adding Missouri would not only bring solid competition in the two major sports, football and basketball but a new area of the country.

Moving south like they could do with Missouri or Kansas would showcase Ohio State, Iowa and the rest of the Big Ten to a new viewership with the Big Ten Network.

The southward move could be very attractive to the Big Ten if they're looking for more followers.


4. Syracuse Orange, Big East

Syracuse has been rumored to leave the Big East numerous times. A few years ago Syracuse almost moved to the ACC with Boston College and Miami but Boeheim put a stop to that.

However, a rivalry with rising Penn State in basketball and football might be to appealing to both Syracuse and the Big Ten to pass up on the opportunity.


3. Pittsburgh Panthers, Big East

Pittsburgh's got a lot of negatives in the Big Ten's eyes, but the positives outweigh that. Playing at Heinz Field is a negative since the Big Ten prefers its teams to have a stadium all its own and not shared with a pro team.

Plus, adding Pittsburgh wouldn't add viewers since the Pennsylvania area is already held with Penn State.

However, a major positive is Pittsburgh's proximity to Penn State. The potential for an annual in-state rivalry to end both teams' season is an attractive proposition if both can stay on the upswing for football.


2. Notre Dame Fighting Irish, Independents

Don't completely rule it out. Remember Miami left for the Big East back in the day and the fact Notre Dame has said no before doesn't mean they won't say yes this time around.


1. Rutgers Scarlet Knights, Big East

Rutgers is slowly becoming a top football program and is still trying to pull its basketball program out of the ground and could be willing to do so in a bigger area and showcase themselves to Midwestern high schoolers.

The New York/New Jersey area is easily the sexiest option to the Big Ten considering how many potential followers are there along with money.