What should happen to Big Ten divisions?

On tonight’s episode of “The Football Report,” our TV analysts tackled the expansion-related topic of the Big Ten Conference football divisions. Before you watch and see what our guys think, come tell us what you think in this post.

Specifically, when the conference expands beyond 12 conference members, should the Big Ten form completely new divisions? If so, what should they be? Or should the Big Ten just add each school to an existing division?

Driven by the recent news that Maryland and Rutgers are joining the Big Ten, the survey below asks this division realignment question among others. BTN is talking about theses questions or the month of December, and we want to hear what you have to say.



Your Opinion?
Show Comments (11 Comments)
Barbara Vinson on 12/10/2012 @ 10:59pm EDT Said:

I would like to see the divisions resembling geographic division, with a bow toward schedule strength. I guess one of the midwestern teams would need to move west. Failing that, start over. Existing division names seem dumb to me–would prefer change in names.

Eric on 12/10/2012 @ 11:38pm EDT Said:

I hope they do the sandwich method. It’s got competitive balance, keeps close teams, and preserves almost every major rivalry. It also requires no locked crossovers so even at 8 games, we can play teams in the other division 2 out of 7 years instead of 2 out 12.

East and West Division: Penn State, Maryland, Rutgers, Nebraska, Wisconsin, Iowa, Minnesota
Central Division: Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Illinois, Northwestern, Purdue, Indiana

Ryan on 12/11/2012 @ 8:59am EDT Said:

Add Notre Dame and Boston College for TV markets, football and hockey! 6 schools is a little small for hockey but 8 is great! As for the divisions:

Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern

Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Wisconsin

Boston College, Maryland, Penn State, Rutgers

Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Purdue

Gray on 12/11/2012 @ 11:30am EDT Said:

“Competitive balance” is a relative concept. With the exception of Ohio State, and perhaps Michigan and Penn State, the remaining B1G football programs fall into two categories: improvement and decline.

Arguably, Nebraska is in a state of decline. Where the Huskers were once a perennial powerhouse, the last decade or so has not been so kind. The same can be said of Penn State. Though not as bad as predicted, the 2012 Nittany Lions probably enjoyed their last winning season for 3-5 years due to heavy NCAA sanctions.

Wisconsin has dominated the conference in recent years. Northwestern has steadily improved their yearly win total thanks, primarily, to a passionate head coach. Meanwhile, past up-and-comers like Iowa Michigan State appear to live or die based on the talent behind center.

In short, the appreciation of competitive balance should set aside when structuring divisions. More travel-friendly divisional makeups will vastly improve attendance while fostering geographic rivalries.

Rich Baxter (@richbaxteraz) on 12/11/2012 @ 1:16pm EDT Said:

I want it to break out as east/west, with the split coming in Illinois rather than Indiana. That will allow the conference to drop protected crossovers, which is imperative if they you at eight conference games and desirable even if you go to nine. Splitting up OSU/PSU/Michigan/Nebraska two and two seems superfluous, especially considering the ongoing success of Wisconsin and the difficulties in Happy Valley.

Team (Season Ending Rival)

Rutgers (MSU)
Maryland (PSU)
MSU (Rutgers)
Michigan (OSU)
Northwestern (Illinois – in the years they play)

Indiana (Purdue)
Purdue (Indiana)
Illinois (Northwestern – in the years they play)
Wisconsin (MN)
Minnesota (WI)
Iowa (NE)
Nebraska (IA)

Dave Zenk on 12/11/2012 @ 3:07pm EDT Said:

Go to a nine game conference schedule with three nonconference games, best for fans and BCS consideration. Lose “Leaders” and “Legends.” Simply go Big 10 East/Big 10 West. East Division : Penn State, Rutgers, Maryland, Ohio State, Purdue, Indiana, Michigan State. West Division: Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Northwestern, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan. With a nine game conference schedule, each team plays six division games, three opposite division games thereby preserving all in-state and traditional rivalries.

Jeff in Nebraska on 12/11/2012 @ 4:49pm EDT Said:

Like it or not ol Big Ten faithfuls Nebraska is one of the Top football schools in the conference.They have beatin everyone in the conference that they have played in the last 2 years.Not played(Indiana,Purdue and the Illini) In that spand they are 12 and 5 so whats the others record in that spand ? I realize they have played some bad road games(4 routes) in order to win a conference title that must improved that ASAP. Need less to say they are B10 contenders and they will be there again next year.

Jeff in Nebraska on 12/11/2012 @ 5:11pm EDT Said:

Division changes will be determine a little bit by who else joins?There can be many formats so we will just have to wait .Likely an east west format would be nice. Welcome Rutgers and Maryland to the Conference. Name change would be more fitting as well maybe it will be there ol Name or something? Waitin on the other 2 schools as well will factor in too ?Who ever wins division will have a Name as well for trophy and for Title as well. Three names come to mind Hayes Schembechler and Osborne also Stagg Bierman and so forth….too.

Jeff in Nebraska on 12/11/2012 @ 5:19pm EDT Said:

What Gray ? Decline it’s obvious you dont look at it objectively. Again Nebraska is 12-5 since joining conference so in them 2 years what are Osu Psu and Michigan in that spand ? Also Wisconsin been in title both years and won. Osu 6-7 last year and both years do count along with all conference games. Research Gray before statements , k. Try not to show bias as well ?

Pete on 12/11/2012 @ 9:04pm EDT Said:

Should be a East/West Split:
Michigan State

Ohio St.
Penn St.

Lose Michigan/Michigan St. game occasionally though…

Joe on 12/13/2012 @ 8:50am EDT Said:

Michigan OSU
Michigan State Wisc
Rutgers Penn State
Ill Maryland
Ind. Iowa
Northwestern Minnesota