Yesterday, the Big Ten officially announced what we all knew for at least a week. However, for those who are oblivious I’ll reiterate: new realignment and division names starting in 2014 and nine-game conference schedules starting in 2016. Most important about this college football news nugget or tidbit if you will, the Big Ten has laid to rest the HORRIBLE division names: Legends and Leaders.
Thankfully we only suffered through that pathetic pablum masquerading as division names for just two years. With Rutgers and Maryland joining the conference, where’s Rebecca Martinson when you need here? I’d love to hear her SCREAM and CURSE LOUDLY IN ANGER at whoever came up with that Legends and Leaders garbage.
Moving on, the new division alignments are:
Big Ten East Division
Indiana, Maryland (along with Rebecca Martinson and her Delta Gamma sisters), Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Penn State, Rutgers
Big Ten West Division
Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Purdue, Wisconsin
All Big Ten East teams are in the eastern time zone and all schools in the West Division are in the central time zone with the exception of Purdue. Each school will play the other six schools in its division plus two teams from the other division in 2014 and 2015. Starting in 2016, each school will play three teams from the other division as part of its nine-game schedule. The one protected cross-division rivalry will be for the Old Oaken Bucket: Indiana and Purdue.
The Big Ten is returning to a nine-game schedule for the first time since the 1983 and 1984 seasons. Those were the days when the Big Ten actually had ten, and those were the only years that a football had a chance to play every single conference rival in the same season. And only one team in history, the 1983 Illinois Fighting Illini led by Jack Trudeau, beat all nine other teams. Somebody may go 9-0 again, but no Big Ten team will ever beat every conference team again in the same year.
So remember that glory Illini fans, as Tim Beckman continues to drag the program down to new depths.
Paul M. Banks is the owner of The Sports Bank.net, an author and regular contributor to MSN, Fox Sports , Chicago Now, and Walter Football. Banks has appeared on Comcast SportsNet and the History Channel, as well as Clear Channel, ESPN and CBS radio all over the world. President Barack Obama follows him on Twitter (@PaulMBanks)Powered by Sidelines Follow paulmbanks