2010 Big Ten: Looking Ahead

David HedlindAnalyst IIJune 20, 2010

COLUMBUS, OH - NOVEMBER 14:  Tailback Brandon Saine #3 of the Ohio State Buckeyes runs with the ball against the Iowa Hawkeyes at Ohio Stadium on November 14, 2009 in Columbus, Ohio.  (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
Jamie Sabau/Getty Images

Well expansion got ahead of my writing and even though the Big Ten did in fact add Nebraska for the 2011 season, it is still up in the air if they are done or not.

For now it would appear they are. Maybe just for this year. The next couple years could be interesting.

Notre Dame is always on the table for the Big Ten but the reverse is not necessarily true.

Missouri would course like the invite they thought they were going to get.

The Big East is always the rumored conference to be raided.

Even Texas has been mentioned in this recent go round. I would expect they would again be coveted.

As for 2010, there is not a single new coach in the conference.

That will likely change in 2011 if a few current ones can’t get things turned around.

Ron Zook took Illinois to the Rose Bowl just a couple seasons ago. But not as Big Ten champs. And a lot of people didn’t believe they should have been there. Since that Rose Bowl appearance, they have only gone 8-16.

Minnesota could be coach shopping as well. Tim Brewster has been somewhat of a disapointment. Sure he has taken the Gophers to back to back bowls. But barely. And they lost both.

Michigan has the loudest outcry for a new coach as the fans have not been behind Rich Rodriguez from day one. Two disappointing seasons later and a third will likely have the athletic department listening to the fans.

I would throw Indiana’s Bill Lynch in there as well but I don’t know what kinds of expectations Indiana has and I think they probably give their coaches a little more time than other schools.

Purdue has the only second year coach and in year two under Danny Hope they could edge their way into a bowl. Losing running back Ralph Bolden is a big hit though.

The Big Ten, of course, stays with the Rose Bowl for their champion, but this year could have the Big Ten pushing for the National Championship. A new stipulation for this year however is that in the event that the champion from the Big Ten, or Pac-10, goes to the National Championship game, the Rose Bowl will take a non-auto qualifying team if one is eligible.

This means that if Ohio State were to go to the National Championship game and Boise State or TCU were BCS bowl eligible, the Rose Bowl would have no choice, as they have in the past, and must take such a team. The Rose Bowl used to take a second place team, like Illinois in 2007.

The next team still goes to the Capital One Bowl to face their second part from the SEC.

The Gator Bowl is now aligned with the Big Ten and SEC as well. This is a new match up for both.

The Big Ten vs. SEC doesn’t end there as both still hold their agreement with the Outback Bowl.

The Alamo Bowl has decided to change and now hosts the Pac-10 instead of the Big Ten to play against a Big XII team.

The Big Ten simply replaced the Alamo with the new Dallas Football Classic against the Big XII. This moved the Insight Bowl up a spot in selection.

The final bowl for the Big Ten the same as before only with a new name. The Motor City Bowl is now the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl. The competition is still against the MAC champion or runner up.

Ohio State and Iowa are the early favorites and I really couldn’t disagree with either. Penn State and Wisconsin will be the likely challengers.