Which division ideas do you prefer?

One of the hottest debates around the Big Ten Conference’s announced plan to expand to 14 schools revolves around the future look of the two divisions. Currently, Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska and Northwestern reside in the Legends Division while Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin are in the Leaders Division.

The addition of Maryland and Rutgers poses this question: What comes next? We’ve launched a survey question in this post with three ideas for divisions. Tell us your choice and add any other feedback, too. BTN’s experts will discuss these ideas on Monday’s “Football Report” at 6:30 p.m. ET.

Also, the numbers tell us that by now many of our readers and viewers have submitted their answers to our first Big Ten expansion and realignment survey, which we launched earlier this month. It’s still live if you haven’t seen it.

Results will be forwarded to the Big Ten Conference office.

mid_west_us_region_nl.eps  mid_west_us_region_nl.eps




Your Opinion?
Show Comments (196 Comments)
Matt on 12/13/2012 @ 3:50pm EDT Said:

How about North and South? Neb, Iowa, Ill, Pur, Ind, osu, and Maryland in the south and Rut, PSU, Mich, MSU, NW, Wisc, and Minn in the north.

NebraskaGuy on 12/13/2012 @ 4:01pm EDT Said:

None of these. Keep the existing divisions (feel free to change the names though…). But then add Maryland and Rutgers to the current Leaders Division. Then move Illinois and Indiana to the current Legends Division. This way the divisions will still retain competitive balance, while for the most part staying somewhat geographically divided.

Jeff Wise on 12/13/2012 @ 4:02pm EDT Said:

I don’t think any of the 3 options are any good. The East should be Penn State, Maryland, Rutgers, OSU, Purdue, Indidana, and MSU.

    BTN.com staff on 12/13/2012 @ 4:05pm EDT Said:

    Great responses so far, so we thank you for that. Just a reminder: You’re of course welcome to leave an comments here for discussion, but the survey is the place to have a real impact. There is the three-answer question itself, and then a second question where you can leave exactly this kind of feedback. That’s the feedback that will be rolled into the official results.

Enived5 on 12/13/2012 @ 4:10pm EDT Said:

Minnesota listed twice in option 2 – one should read Wisconsin. I know they’re hard to tell apart. Just ask my Blackshirts – they thought were playing Minnesota in Indy…

    BTN.com staff on 12/13/2012 @ 4:28pm EDT Said:

    Our mistake. Corrected.

Jeff Giovengo on 12/13/2012 @ 4:14pm EDT Said:

If we expand further, i would definitely hope to pick up a school with a really good football program. I get the t.v. market thing, but i don’t want to watch poor football. I’m sure millions of others agree. Pass that on to Mr. Delaney. Thanks!

    BTN.com staff on 12/13/2012 @ 4:20pm EDT Said:

    Jeff, you can do that by submitting the feedback in the survey. Enjoy!

jeff ferg on 12/13/2012 @ 4:16pm EDT Said:

don’t like option 2 with no wis and 2 minn

Rawley on 12/13/2012 @ 4:16pm EDT Said:

Option 2 best.

David on 12/13/2012 @ 4:22pm EDT Said:

Just put Michigan and Ohio State in the same division.

Nick on 12/13/2012 @ 4:22pm EDT Said:

Option 2 makes the most sense

Greed Is Killing Football on 12/13/2012 @ 4:25pm EDT Said:

How about stop being greedy and adding teams that take up half of a US map? Adding Maryland and Rutgers does not improve the product on the field; it just fattens the pockets of the conference. Maybe Indiana can now not be the worst team in the conference

hawkeyepapyrus on 12/13/2012 @ 4:25pm EDT Said:

These three division choices are terrible. Send Wisconsin to the Legends. Problem solved.

Jonathan on 12/13/2012 @ 4:26pm EDT Said:

Why can’t we just have a Grain Belt division(West) and an Iron Belt division?

hawkeyepapyrus on 12/13/2012 @ 4:28pm EDT Said:

Or, if you are that worried about competitive imbalance. Move Wisconsin and Illinoiz to the Legends. Move Michigan to the Leaders. Michigan-MSU permanent crossover. Pretty simple. Why am i not getting paid for this.

Jerry on 12/13/2012 @ 4:31pm EDT Said:

Option 2

Dkohn81 on 12/13/2012 @ 4:39pm EDT Said:

Put Michigan and Ohio St in the Same division!

Tony on 12/13/2012 @ 4:44pm EDT Said:

I like option 2 because the map looks like an eye to remind us that Big Brother Jim Delany is always watching.

Rob on 12/13/2012 @ 4:47pm EDT Said:

I don’t any of the 3 . East West is over all best. But the Split should be Illinois, Purdue & Indiana in East with tOSU,PSU,UR & UMarry. The West get rest..

D on 12/13/2012 @ 4:57pm EDT Said:

I like the circles – it does the best job of maintaining rivalries. PSU-Nebraska, Wisconsin-Minnesota, Nebraska-Iowa. Even PSU-Iowa were starting to form a rivalry before the new divisions.

And it allows RU and UMD to feel at home with each other and PSU.

Of course, it also allows Michigan/Ohio State in a division, as well. Along with UM-MSU, Purdue-Indiana and Northwestern-Illinois.

Yeah, that’s the best option in my opinion.

Anthony Burgos on 12/13/2012 @ 5:00pm EDT Said:

Option 3, The Eye! It makes competetive sense, keeps most rivalries intact and makes at least some geographic sense.

BlueCO43 on 12/13/2012 @ 5:01pm EDT Said:

Keep them as is and add Maryland and Rutgers to the Leaders and move Illinois over to the Legends better balance.

NebraskaGuy on 12/13/2012 @ 5:09pm EDT Said:

—->Option #1. I dont like any of these, but if these three were my only options, then I would pick option #1, due to competitive balance. This would be pretty unfair though for the additional team that is placed in the Legends Division from a geographical (and travel expenses) standpoint. If the Big Ten decides to completely ignore geography in the new division alignment, then they need to establish a financial aid program for travel expenses to to even the playing field.

—->Then, if a financial aid program was established to compensate for extreme travel distances, I think option #3 would work well too.

—->The most important part of this should be that between Ohio St, Michigan, Nebraska, and Penn St, two teams should be in one division and the other two teams in the other division. This is due to competitive balance and also produces matchups between teams that have a long history of tradition / success / national championships / 800+ wins…, which produces sexy TV matchups that will draw national interest and put the Big Ten in the national spotlight on the big stage.

—->That said, the best scenario of all would be:
None of these. Keep the existing divisions (feel free to change the names though…). But then add Maryland and Rutgers to the current Leaders Division. Then move Illinois and Indiana to the current Legends Division. This way the divisions will still retain competitive balance, while for the most part staying somewhat geographically divided.

Shane on 12/13/2012 @ 5:11pm EDT Said:

It is imperative that Ohio State and Michigan are in the same division. I’ll default to Option 2.

NebraskaGuy on 12/13/2012 @ 5:15pm EDT Said:

*** I meant move Illinois ‘OR’ (not and) Indiana to the Legends

Tom Fox on 12/13/2012 @ 5:16pm EDT Said:

Move Illinois to Division A while adding Rutgers and Maryland to Division B. This makes the most sense from a geographic standpoint while keeping the two divisions equal based on the historic qualities of the top/upper teams in both divisions (as the current Legends / Leaders divisions are sufficiently equal between historic program quality and competitive football balance when comparing the two sides, top to bottom). It also makes sense to stay with geographic orientation as a key factor in this decision, as non-football sports with smaller budgets may need to develop similarly derived division-like schedules with the expanded number of programs competing within the B10; if the intent is that non-football sports would potentially follow the football division blueprint and simplify how the fans understand competition and scheduling of all sports within B10 conference schedules.

B1G on 12/13/2012 @ 5:22pm EDT Said:

lets blow the whole thing up and anger everyone: RED (WI, IN, OSU, RU, NEB, MN, MARY) and ZONE(PSU, IA, MI, MSU, NW, IL, PUR)

TinselWolverine on 12/13/2012 @ 5:28pm EDT Said:

I says option 2, I says.

Michael on 12/13/2012 @ 5:38pm EDT Said:

Michigan and Ohio have been out of it for a few seasons with the whole RR and Tressell business, but they’re back to their winning ways again. If they star playing for the B1G Championship game and are in different divisions then every other year we could have Michigan v Ohio State the last game of the year, then the next saturday a Michigan-Ohio rematch. We had a rematch the first year, and the second year of the Championship game, but when they start happening in back to back weeks it’ll get stupid. They should be in the same division.

Grady E on 12/13/2012 @ 5:42pm EDT Said:

1) East and West. While I like option 3 too, the bottom line is the distance between, say Nebraska vs Maryland is way toooo much compared to Purdue vs Ohio State. It seems like that would be a total disadvantage to the outer eye’s fan base.

2) Ohio St and Michigan must be in the same division. No more cross-over protected matches. If it happens great, if not look forward to next time. Then schedules will be easier to work with for 9 game conference schedule. OSU and Michigan won’t cheapen the rivalry, but enhance it by no having repeat participents in CCG (see Stanford vs UCLA). It helped with Texas vs Oklahoma in the Big 12 (though killed NU-OU).

Ben on 12/13/2012 @ 5:47pm EDT Said:

If you go east west you have to draw the line between one of the in state rivalries. I say divide those 6 north and south, iu, pu, ill & msu, mich, nw. You can then put those two threes in either to balance competition

mojo on 12/13/2012 @ 5:49pm EDT Said:

option 2, spilt down the middle, east schools vs west schools, some years the big sexy traditional schools are going to have down years, and the least likely school may have a outstanding year, balances out over the years, think basketball also

Devaney on 12/13/2012 @ 5:50pm EDT Said:

Nebraska Guy, as a fellow Nebraskan I’m embarrassed by your math. If you add both Rutgers and Maryland to the Leaders it will have 8 teams. If you then move Illinois and Indiana to the Legends, the Legends would have 8 and the Leaders would have 6. So unless you want uneven divisions that doesn’t work.

Bofense on 12/13/2012 @ 5:51pm EDT Said:

Historically, the top four football schools would be Nebraska, Penn State, Ohio State and Michigan. So…the thinking goes that two of those schools should be in one division and two in the other. But, the times are changing. No one really knows what effect all the sanctions will have on Penn State and how long those will linger. But, all would agree their program will suffer, we just don’t know how much. Given that, and the beat down my Huskers received in the Big 10 Championship, I’d certainly put Wisconsin up in the elite football schools, basically replacing Penn State at this point. So, I actually think the East/West makes sense. Plus, (and I think this is really important) given the travel distances that are involved, more fans are gong to make road trips to schools that are closer. As for naming the divisions, anything is better than what we have now, a simple East/West works for me.

Michael on 12/13/2012 @ 5:54pm EDT Said:

Travel and distance aren’t a problem in the B1G. The Pac12 has Arizona teams play 1,500 miles away in Washington every year, and Boston College to Miami can be an over 1,600 mile drive. That’s several hundred miles, and 4 hours drive further than Lincoln, NE to New Jersey. If those teams mostly fly back and forth, then a 24 hour drive is not an issue. The B1G is a very wealthy conference compared to the ACC/Pac12, and already has an equal revenue sharing system in place to divide up those growing millions.

buckr on 12/13/2012 @ 5:59pm EDT Said:

Just put osu and mich in the same div. and kept as the last reg season game for both. Noww the best game in the land is even bigger. Once is enough. A rematch of those two in the champ game would be criminal.

Wade Williams on 12/13/2012 @ 6:01pm EDT Said:

I’m a Nebraska fan and I truly do not want to see option 2 materialize. The look of Division B is just too lame for me to even get remotely excited about. Right now, with the exception of Wisconsin, I would just have a hard time getting too pumped up over any of those games. I like the idea of playing Rutgers, PSU, and Wisconsin as Divisional games much better than say, Illinois, Purdue, and Northwestern. I would prefer to keep it the way it is and add either one of the new schools. Nebraska is just now getting acclimated to the B1G and switching it up dramatically now would perhaps be a setback to the progress they have made thus far as far as getting settled in goes. However, at the end of the day, I’ll be good with whatever. I just wish the season was here sooner and didn’t go by so quickly! As long as we are playing ball, it’s all good!

BigCat on 12/13/2012 @ 6:03pm EDT Said:

Whoever came up with inner-outer deserves to be fired.

Stop Expanding on 12/13/2012 @ 6:07pm EDT Said:

Stop adding teams and please send UMD and RU back where they came from… If they’ll even take them.

Greed and TV markets have done enough damage, please don’t continue on this fools errand.

GoBackToTen in Iowa on 12/13/2012 @ 6:08pm EDT Said:

I would prefer to get rid of the new teams that nobody wants. That said, as long as they are here, keep them in the other division. Thanks in advance

pianobadger on 12/13/2012 @ 6:11pm EDT Said:

All of these options suck, but option 2 is the closest to not sucking. Switch Purdue for MSU and you’ve got a deal.

HuskerNLawrence on 12/13/2012 @ 6:12pm EDT Said:

Option 2 is the only one that makes sense until we get ND and, Virginia or Kentucky to join and we can continue with a East West split.

jim on 12/13/2012 @ 6:19pm EDT Said:

I agree keep them as is add Maryland and Rutgers to the Leaders and move Illinois to Legends

Mike Shaffer on 12/13/2012 @ 6:34pm EDT Said:

The East and West divisions would suck for competitive balance. You really can’t have OSU, PSU, and Michigan in the same division. They are the 3 big money earners and have by far the 3 largest fanbases. Also, they have a huge advantage in terms of recruiting. Hell, PSU had a top 10 recruiting class for 2013 before the sanctions hit, even with the scandal hanging over them. And, even with the sanctions, they still have the 3rd best recruting class in the Big Ten. Once, the sanctions are over they’ll be back to top 10/15 every year. You can’t have long term balance with those three together.

The Inner and Outer divisions would suck for the Outer teams due to traveling costs.

You might as well add one new team to each division, at least until the conference expands again.

-Just My Opinion

LC-88 on 12/13/2012 @ 6:40pm EDT Said:

+1: Keep them as is and add Maryland and Rutgers to the Leaders and move Illinois over to the Legends better balance.

Steve on 12/13/2012 @ 6:44pm EDT Said:

Michigan and OSU have to be in the same division. Having this game as a protected crossover is a massive disadvantage for these 2 schools. Do option 3 and eliminate protected crossovers!

Mike on 12/13/2012 @ 6:56pm EDT Said:

all of you are taking division balance way too seriously. It is overrated and unsustainable over the long term. The eye is a good division split. You have a midwest triangle where all three teams like to play eachother; A PSU, Rutgers, Maryland triangle which would generate a nice series of rivalries (East Coast is PSU recruiting ground); and U of M-OSU in the same division playing eachother once and one time only every year. FYI the OSU-Michigan game was the fifth highest rated game of the entire season in the NCAA and it was a noon game. Why would you want to dumb down that rivalry by making them potentially play a meaningless matchup against eachother before a potential rematch in the B1G game? That’s why they need to be in the same division. However, for those of you who are into this whole divisional balance thing, you have your two big boys in one division, and your three other major powers in the other division schools in the outer eye adding some balance.

Guy on 12/13/2012 @ 6:58pm EDT Said:

I don’t like any of these. Just add Maryland and Rutgers to the Leaders Division and move somebody to the Legends Division. That’s a much better option than any of those proposals.

TomC on 12/13/2012 @ 7:01pm EDT Said:

I agree with Rob.
Illinois , Indiana, Purdue, Ohio State, Penn State, Rutgers and Maryland in the East.
Nebraska, Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan, Mich State, Northwestern and Minnesota in the West.

Stephen Johnson on 12/13/2012 @ 7:08pm EDT Said:

I would eliminate all cross conference games to avoid replays in the championship games. Go and play other conferences instead to hopefully inflict losses on them rather than within the conference. I would also eliminate any games between the Big 10 and Pac 12 during the regular season to avoid a rematch in the Rose Bowl.

Rob on 12/13/2012 @ 7:10pm EDT Said:

option 3

B1GOSUFAN on 12/13/2012 @ 7:10pm EDT Said:

Option 2 is terrible. The East is far stronger than the West.

Option 1 makes no sense either. Why add Maryland and Rutgers and not have them play Penn State evey year?

Out of the three listed, option 3 is innovative, balanced, and has Ohio State and Michigan in the same division which I would prefer.

Moving either Wisconsin or Illinois to the “Legends” and placing both Rutgers and Maryland in the leaders would make more sense than options 1 or 2.

PlanoHusker on 12/13/2012 @ 7:18pm EDT Said:

The outer division option is a terrible travel nightmare not only for the teams, but particularly for the fans. It is almost unworkable. The best option is a straight east/west division, particularly for ease of travel every year.

Mr. K on 12/13/2012 @ 7:25pm EDT Said:

Why can’t Illinois just be moved to the Legends and put MD and Rutgers in the Leaders?

East/West would be the next best, but that seems a little unbalanced.

Tom on 12/13/2012 @ 7:31pm EDT Said:

Delaney is just going to do whatever Michigan and OSU want. Why do you think they both played in the Sugar Bowl the last two seasons? Why do you think Northwestern got screwed out of the Capital One Bowl this year? To save Michigan.

Alex on 12/13/2012 @ 7:33pm EDT Said:

As a Michigan fan we don’t want to play Ohio State two weeks in a row. Plus the way the Leaders is looking it looks like Ohio State is going to dominate that division. Re-do them and put Michigan and Ohio State in the same division like it should have been in the first place.

TM on 12/13/2012 @ 7:50pm EDT Said:

I have a unique view on how divisional alignment should be done. I call the idea “Seaded Divisions.”

There would be 2 divisons, each made up of 7 schools (or 8 schools in a 16 team conference). The membership in each division would change each year. For lack of better names, let’s call them the Odd Division and the Even Division. Whomever wins the conference championship game would be the highest sead for next year and would be placed in the Odd Division. The loser of that game would be seed #2 and be placed in the Even Division. Based on win-loss records and tiebreakers, the other schools would be placed in decending order into the appropriate divisions. The Odd Division would have seads 1-3-5-7-9-11-13-15 and the Even Division would have seeds 2-4-6-8-10-12-14-16. For a 14 team league, you’d play the other 6 schools in your division plus 2 (or 3) in the other division. For a 16 team league, you’d play the other 7 schools in your division plus 1 (or 2) in the other division. Designated rivals would play each other regardless if they’re in the same or opposite division for the upcoming year.

The divisions would need to be reseaded shortly after the conference championship game so the next year’s schedule could be generated. This short turnaround could cause some issues such as people planning trips, reserving hotels, etc. One work-around is to resead for 2 years down the road instead of the next year. Or an alternative work-around is for each school to already have the majority of their home games set on the calendar before they know who they’ll play – a good software program would help with these scheduling parameters.

A plus with “Seaded Divisions” is that the schools will be able to play all members on a more regular basis as the home-and-home schedules would be eliminated and the Big Ten office could fine-tune the match-ups based on the length of time the 2 schools last played each other.

Another plus is that “Seaded Divisions” by their nature promote competitive balance. The best through worst teams are evenly spread out in each division each year.

Another plus is dispersment of the kings. Right now, the Big Ten has 4 kings (UM, OSU, PSU and NU). This works great if there are 4 pods to spread out competitiveness. But what if an FSU or ND join? Then which pod do they join? It wouldn’t be competitively balanced if a OSU and FSU were in the same division.

Another plus is for a larger conference. “Seaded Divisions” would work good for an 18 team league with a 9 game conference schedule with 1 designated rival: play the other 8 teams in your division and 1 from the other division. If no designated rival, then “Seaded Divisions” would work for a 20 team league and 9 conference games: play the other 9 schools in your division.

One could argue that this would be too confusing for fans. Which division is my team in this year? Perhaps. But effective marketing would influence this. Schools would be promoted as being in the Big Ten, not as being in the East Pod or the Legends Division or whatever. Instead the fans’ question would be become, “Who’s on the schedule this year?” They would understand that if they win most/all their games, they’d be in the conference championship game.

I think yearly reseading will keep the Big Ten fresh and exciting. Fans would enjoy new matchups each year with the knowledge that you only have to wait up to 2-3 years to play somebody not on this years schedule.

CFBfan1 on 12/13/2012 @ 7:59pm EDT Said:

None of these. Think about travel of fanbases. Penn State, Maryland, Rutgers, OSU, Purdue, Indidana, and MSU in one division. The rest in the other. Keeps things competative. Why on earth would you put PSU, UMaryland, or RU in the same division as Nebraska, Iowa, or Minny??? Make it easy for fan bases to establish rivalries and travel to games.

BUFFALO LION on 12/13/2012 @ 8:07pm EDT Said:

The “Inner/Outer is the plan that I proposed in the original survey. Makes BY FAR the most sense. No annual cross division rivalry games will be needed. With a 9 game Conference Schedule, it allows you to play most teams in the opposite Division twice every four years. You will rotate off each team in the other Division 4 years in a row only once over a 14 year cycle.

Guarantees to television networks the POSSIBILITY of an Ohio State/Michigan/Michigan State vs Nebraska/Penn State/Wisconsin/Iowa Championship game every year. The rotation can be EASILY set up so that each team in the Outer Division is GUARANTEED to play AT LEAST one of Ohio State, Michigan, and/or Michigan State EVERY year.

With Maryland and Rutgers now in our (Penn State’s) Division, and three guaranteed games against teams from the other (Inner) Division (states of Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and/or Ohio), travel will be less than what it is now. Only two away games per year against Iowa/Nebraska/Wisconsin/Minnesota (the 4 other teams in our Outer Division).

Michigan State will be the end of year Rivalry Game for Penn State, Maryland, and Rutgers based on the schedule rotation..

1.) Years Penn State plays Michigan State, end of year rivalry games will be Penn State vs Michigan State and Rutgers vs Maryland.

2.) Years Rutgers plays Michigan State, end of year Rivalry games will be Michigan State vs Rutgers and Penn State vs Maryland.

3.) Years NEITHER Penn State or Rutgers plays Michigan State, end of year rivalry games will be Michigan State vs Maryland and Penn State vs Rutgers.

JT Grant on 12/13/2012 @ 8:20pm EDT Said:

Keep the East/West plan except do not split the Indiana schools. Instead split the Michigan schools. This creates a better competitive balance. Just be sure to keep UM vs MSU as a guaranteed crossover.

Kyle on 12/13/2012 @ 8:26pm EDT Said:

I think you have to keep the conferences balanced with that said do East/west but have three power houses in each divide Michigan/ Michigan state. Nebraska, Wisconsin, and Michigan state in the west and Ohio state, Michigan, and penn state in the east.

Kyle Shadd on 12/13/2012 @ 8:31pm EDT Said:

Think you do the east/ west idea but split Michigan/ michigan state. Keep three power house schools in each division MSU, Neb, and Wisconsin in west and OSU, Michigan, and penn state in the East.

Mark G. (@mtgassr) on 12/13/2012 @ 8:43pm EDT Said:

Option 2- (East/West)… I may be new to the conference(MD grad), but it seems to be the best option. I understand the competitive balance debate with Michigan, Ohio State and Penn State in the same division, but competitive balance shifts every year with down years by some teams and good years by others. Even if you won’t believe that, this option gives the best conference schedule possible league wide. The only place this falls short is the possible “competitive balance” debate come the conference championship game. So ask yourself, what’s more important– 112 game conference schedule or 1 game?

John on 12/13/2012 @ 8:45pm EDT Said:

The Leaders division should pick up MD and RU and Illinois or Indiana should move to the Legends. And please change the names. They are the B1G’s ‘Coke II’. Hopefully the conference has gotten the message.

Mike on 12/13/2012 @ 8:51pm EDT Said:

State had two 11 win seasons in a row, but they are not a powerhouse. Michigan and Ohio State in one division, PSU, Nebraska and Wisconsin in the other. Division equality should not be an issue. Keeping traditional rivalries should be the main focus. Leaders and legends is a complete joke and failure

Jesse on 12/13/2012 @ 9:06pm EDT Said:

I also think the east/west split would work great if the west got Michigan State instead of Purdue. The conferences would be much more equal if it were done like that.

Maizel on 12/13/2012 @ 9:33pm EDT Said:

East and west by far makes the most sense along with Michigan and ohio state in same side of conference. Can still maintain THE GAME but the rest of the teams and fans won’t have to watch those two teams play each other twice every year!

Captain Marvy on 12/13/2012 @ 9:37pm EDT Said:

Stop trying to manipulate a Michigan-OSU title game. The ACC attempted to do the same thing with FSU-Miami and failed moserably. Just go East-West like the SEC. I like the idea some folks have suggested of putting MSU in the West if people are really so concerned with competitive balance. In addition, PSU is going reek for a few years when the sanctions really take hold, and won’t be a factor in the East for quite some time.

Wade Ostdiek on 12/13/2012 @ 9:47pm EDT Said:

I don’t think divisions are necessary, and in the end I think they hurt the league, by restricting how often some teams get to play.

I think we need to stick to an 8-game conference schedule to allow for programs to schedule out of conference games as they normally do.

Rather than divisions, simply give each team 3-protected games, then put the remaining 5 teams on a rotating schedule. This allows for everybody to play everybody twice every four years, while sticking to an 8-game schedule.

If/when we expand to 16, simply add a 9th game and a 4th protected rival (But lets not expand to 16).

Possible protected games-

Nebraska: Penn State, Wisconsin, Iowa
Michigan: Ohio State, Michigan State, Minnesota
Ohio State: Michigan, Illinois, Purdue
Penn State: Nebraska, Rutgers, Maryland
Wisconsin: Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota
Michigan State: Michigan, Northwestern, Indiana
Iowa: Nebraska, Wisconsin, Minnesota
Northwestern: Michigan State, Illinois, Indiana
Minnesota: Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa
Rutgers: Penn State, Maryland, Purdue
Maryland: Penn State, Rutgers, Illinois
Illinois: Ohio State, Northwestern, Maryland
Purdue: Ohio State, Indiana, Rutgers
Indiana: Michigan State, Purdue, Northwestern

Nebraska’s example schedule: PSU, Wisc, Iowa, + Rotation A or B
Rotation A: tOSU, MSU, Purdue, MD, Minn
Rotation B: UM, RU, NW, Ill, Indiana

Wade Ostdiek on 12/13/2012 @ 9:49pm EDT Said:

“Rather than divisions, simply give each team 3-protected games, then put the remaining 5 teams on a rotating schedule.”

*remaining 10, on a rotating schedule. – 5 each year.

mauihusker on 12/13/2012 @ 9:57pm EDT Said:

WEST – Nebraska, Iowa, Minn, Wisc, Mich State, Northwestern, Illinois
EAST – Michigan, Ohio State, Purdue, Indiana, Penn State, Rutgers, Maryland
Easier travel, competitive balance, keeps Mich and tOSU from playing twice in a row while satisfying their wish to play each other in the last week. Also will promote the growing rivalry between Huskers and Wisky. The Game would mean more as the winner would often go to the Championship Game.

Brandon on 12/13/2012 @ 10:26pm EDT Said:

Please put Illinois, Indiana, Purdue, Ohio State, Penn state, Maryland, Rutgers in the East. I want to keep OSU and Michigan as a Protected Rival last game.. Nebraska and Penn State. Illinois and Northwestern. Only those 6 teams need to cross the division for a rivalry game in this alignment. Stronger West? Since the 70’s Nebraska, OSU, Penn State, Michigan have National Championships. They are split even in this alignment.

1990_big_z on 12/13/2012 @ 11:19pm EDT Said:

Why stop at 14? Oklahoma and Texas could be good for the Big Ten. Then your football divisions could be:

East: Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, Rutgers
West: Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Oklahoma, Texas, Wisconsin

Michigan and OSU need to be in the same division. Bo and Woody would have never approved of them being in separate divisions. Also, this setup revives the Nebraska-Oklahoma rivalry that for many years defined the Big 8 (now the Big 12).

Chip Minnich on 12/13/2012 @ 11:22pm EDT Said:

Leaders and Legends sound arrogant and pretentious – nobody knows which teams are in which division. Inner and Outer sound even worse, as crazy as that sounds. Please divide the teams into East and West, with Indiana in the East with Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Penn State, Maryland, and Rutgers. Makes sense geographically, considering where the teams are located. it will protect “THE GAME” in terms of importance for Ohio State and Michigan. Wisconsin should also be playing teams such as Minnesota, Nebraska, Iowa, etc, every season. Geographic location should be the primary concern for divisional alignment.

JuniorDebeermeister. on 12/13/2012 @ 11:26pm EDT Said:

Option 2 is the worst of the three. Too many of the better programs in the East–Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State, and MSU. The West would be incredibly weak. There needs to be a balance. If you go with this option, you will have what the Big 12 used to have with Texas and Oklahoma in the South and a very week North division(Iowa State represented that division). Keep Ohio State and Michigan in separate divisions since they are the top two programs in the B10.

Ryan on 12/13/2012 @ 11:41pm EDT Said:

East and West, no question! Then you don’t have to have protected crossover rivalry games and you get to play other side more frequently. Also OSU and Michigan should be in the same division, makes final game even more exciting. Noboday wants to see them play each other 2 weeks in a row.

puboiler on 12/13/2012 @ 11:43pm EDT Said:

East / West as is above, only if Oaken Bucket game is protected.

Daniel on 12/14/2012 @ 12:14am EDT Said:

Reblogged this on Anchor for the Soul and commented:
As a Husker fan, I would like to see the East/West option. It’s the easiest way of splitting up the conference.

Ryan james on 12/14/2012 @ 12:14am EDT Said:

Divisons r great for the conference and heres something diferent,, instead of a regular championship game how about a 6 team playoff to determine bigten champion.

aps on 12/14/2012 @ 12:14am EDT Said:

I agree with what others have said, East-West with Michigan State in the west with Purdue in the east. Make Michigan and Michigan State cross division rivals to meet every year. Penn State & Nebraska could be matched as cross division rivals with Ohio State & Wisconsin as well. This would help balance competition between the teams and the divisions.

I also believe that the Big Ten should go to a 10 game schedule. This would ensure that everyone plays each other in a four year cycle. Thus we would be playing each other more. If scheduled properly, the big boys of Penn State, Ohio State & Michigan in the east could be guaranteed to play 2 of the big boys Nebraska, Wisconsin & Michigan State from the west every year. This would also help create competitive balance within the league and each division.

One real positive of an east – west split would be the ease of travel for the fans.

Mike War on 12/14/2012 @ 12:21am EDT Said:

Why are so many people obsessed with putting tOSU and UM in the same division? I’m an avid Ohio State fan and I’d love the opportunity to beat UM twice a year. It would cut down that big lead (that UM established before 1930) in less time. Also, with the way Nebraska played the B10 title game, you can probably assume that without UM, the Legends division would lack a big time program. Putting UM and tOSU in the same division would make the conference lopsided.

Alex Callan on 12/14/2012 @ 12:37am EDT Said:

East West divisions would work…except put Purdue in the East and either Mich or MSU in the West. Balanced for short term and long term plus it makes way more sense than anything else.

Eric on 12/14/2012 @ 12:41am EDT Said:

I love the inner-outer as it requires NO LOCKED CROSSOVERS. If we only have 8 conference games, we shouldn’t be using up 7 games on locked teams. We can’t afford to the locked crossovers anymore so we need a set-up where they aren’t required and the inner-outer is the only one that completely fits that criteria.

Drew on 12/14/2012 @ 1:04am EDT Said:

I did a mock-up schedule of the Inner-Outer Divisions. Don’t think travel is that ridiculous for the 4 West or 3 East schools… http://img171.imageshack.us/img171/2910/bigdivisions.jpg

Kevin on 12/14/2012 @ 1:08am EDT Said:

1. Just move Illinois to the Legends. 2. Move Michigan vs o$u to the weekend before Thanksgiving, where it was for many years. No cross-over games the final weekend. 3. How does the breakup of the Big East now affect the time table for Rutgers and Maryland? N.D. and L-Ville think they may be moving into the ACC next year. Could this clear them up to move in to the B1G next year?

Maurice Robinson on 12/14/2012 @ 1:16am EDT Said:

This will make you mad . . . Michigan, Ohio State is the conference!. Nobody believes this, but this is the case.

UMFan on 12/14/2012 @ 1:43am EDT Said:

Obviously #2 makes the most sense. Not that i was in favor of adding two more teams in the first place since unless we go to 9 conference games you’ll only play one game against a team from the other division and that makes no sense to call it a conference. If you split either michigan and msu or purdue and indiana and keep that as a crossover then that could work.

UMFan on 12/14/2012 @ 1:47am EDT Said:

Also now that there’s so many teams in one conference and a playoff in two years, does it really make sense to have a conference championship game anymore? It was cool for the first year, but this year it was obvious by the lack of attendance by nebraska of all fanbases that they couldn’t justify spending money for tickets and travel to indianapolis and then spending money for tickets and travel to their bowl game. It doesn’t make financial sense. Just do it by whoever has the best record and if there’s a tie, do it by highest ranking gets the rose bowl bid. There’s nothing wrong with co-championships.

Doug on 12/14/2012 @ 3:32am EDT Said:

I really like options 2 and 3. OSU and Michigan need to be in the same division together. It cheapens the rivalry a bit when they play twice, especially back-to-back. I chose option 3 as my favorite though because it creates a very competitive balance, while maintaining rivalries. I just hope they can keep OSU-Michigan on the last game of the regular season though

Big Planner on 12/14/2012 @ 5:39am EDT Said:

The ACC put Florida State in Miami in different divisions hoping to force a title game between them every year. It didn’t work. The B1G needs to go East-West, just like the SEC, with Michigan and Ohio State in the same division. I like the idea of putting Michigan State in the West, for balance, with a protected crossover against Michigan. Then give Ohio State a protected crossover against Wisconsin, Penn State against Nebraska, Rutgers against Northwestern, Maryland against Illinois, Indiana against Minnesota, and Purdue against Iowa. Rotate the other 6 crossover games across an 8-game or 9-game B1G schedule.

Steve on 12/14/2012 @ 6:26am EDT Said:

WI fan … Inner-outer plan most intriguing … I love the WI/MN/IA/NE quad linked with the fertile recruiting/media grounds of the Eastern schools PSU/MD/RUT … I like OSU/MI in same division as well … Western schools need the exposure and the recruits to stay viable and relevant … Yes, the least geographical plan is the most satisfactory

dutch1257Brad Holland on 12/14/2012 @ 6:26am EDT Said:

Do the Option 2 East-West split, but swap MSU & Purdue. The Big Ten Championship Game should be nicknamed after the man that got the Big Ten started, back in that 1895 meeting in Chicago, with football as the main objective…Purdue University’s President James Smart. Then the title game could simply be called “The James Smart Bowl”. Next year would be “Smart Bowl III”. The National Championship Game could be called “The Power Bowl”, like the NFL’s “Super Bowl”. In 2014, with the 4 team play-off, the title game could be dubbed “Power Bowl I”, because whoever wins, is the National Power in college football that year. Also, if we can’t get Notre Dame & Pitt in the Big Ten…then go after Texas & Oklahoma to bring the Big Ten membership to 16 great schools!

The AMT on 12/14/2012 @ 7:58am EDT Said:

None of the above. Move Illinois to the other division, and add UMd and Rutgers to Purdue, IU, Ohio State, Penn State, etc.

Frank Lemanski on 12/14/2012 @ 8:07am EDT Said:

Option 1. Put Maryland in the first division, so it will still be the “M”s, “N”s, and Iowa.

vincent flynn on 12/14/2012 @ 8:24am EDT Said:

i like east west, this site would not let me put the order of these choices,east west #1, inner outer #2, and the norm plus one #3

Dan TrueBlue on 12/14/2012 @ 8:34am EDT Said:

Now that we’re at 14, we can absolutely do pods, which both has more balance and makes more sense than any of these.

NORTH: Michigan, MSU, Northwestern
EAST: Penn State, Maryland, Rutgers
WEST: Nebraska, Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin
SOUTH: OSU, Illinois, Indiana, Purdue


Each team can have a permanent cross-over of course; say: Michigan-OSU, Nebraska-PSU, Wisconsin-MSU, Northwestern-Illinois, Purdue-Rutgers, Iowa-Maryland, Minnesota-Indiana

In an 8-game conference schedule, the schools in the smaller pods will see everyone twice in four years. The larger pod schools will be just short of that (it takes them another game to see everyone in the opposing large pod twice); but they also get to see some of their preferred opponents more often. In a 9-game schedule, everyone sees everyone at least twice in 4 years.

Either way, it’s much, much better than 7-team divisions. Yuck.

Tom Mattingly on 12/14/2012 @ 8:39am EDT Said:

Neither one of your surveys allows me to pick my favorite team. The bottom four teams when selected check marks a team in the top eight. Will not let me go to “Next” because of incomplete answer on favorite school. So survey is useless.

    BTN.com staff on 12/14/2012 @ 10:35am EDT Said:

    Tom, we’re not seeing that issue on any browser and have no other reports of this. Can you tell us what browser you’re using? We want you and any others to be able to complete this.

Nielsen on 12/14/2012 @ 9:01am EDT Said:

Not sure how any team other than Nebraska and Wisconsin would like option 2…..As a Nebraska fan I like it…..you are looking at either a Nebraska or Wisconsin in the championship game every year!

Chris on 12/14/2012 @ 9:29am EDT Said:

Many coments have it right here already, M-Ohio have to be in the same bracket, consider leaving Sate in the West for comp balance. M/Ohio in the East will help selling cable to for the new regions; provide a protected rivalry with M/MSU and NEb/Ohio to keep Nebraska happy

Fritz on 12/14/2012 @ 9:31am EDT Said:

I like the Red-Zone Idea. It’s easy to remember and it has competitive balance.
(OSU-UW-Neb-Mary-IU-Rut-Minny) vs. (Mich-PSU-MSU-Iowa-Purdue-Ill-NW)

Mark G. (@mtgassr) on 12/14/2012 @ 9:43am EDT Said:

East and West is the right way. I can get onboard with the small change of switching Purdue and MSU. You don’t want Ohio St and Michigan in different divisions. If they meet in the championship game the loser probably gets knocked out of playoffs and maybe BCS. By being in the same division the loser during the regular season still has a shot at both by not having to play in the championship game. That’s exactly how LSU and Alabama have exploited the BCS recently.

mrbee on 12/14/2012 @ 9:44am EDT Said:

The inner / outer plan seems to be the most balanced based on recent records. I definitely don’t think Nebraska should be regularly playing the far east schools…doesn’t make sense financially. I agree with Eric that we don’t need locked crossovers…it limits the scheduling too much.

Mike on 12/14/2012 @ 9:47am EDT Said:

Put Ohio State in one Division and the rest of the teams in another since Ohio State is the annointed one and they think they are Gods.

roger maddix on 12/14/2012 @ 9:55am EDT Said:

Great job at the Big 10 NET. Love all the shows, would love to see a college game day type program. East West . Go buckeyes 12-0 hio!

Ben on 12/14/2012 @ 9:58am EDT Said:

As a Michigan fan, there are three games I want to see every year:
Michigan/Michigan State
Michigan/Ohio State

As long as I see them, I don’t really care what the divisions are. I do hope, though, they get rid of the idiotic division names. And honestly, they should go to a 10-game conference schedule and just drop the divisions and have the top two teams play in the conference championship game.

cfballguy on 12/14/2012 @ 10:00am EDT Said:

People need to stop worrying about “balance” and suggesting that MSU be put in the West. I work in politics and this is called gerrymandering. Purdue is west of MSU. It is ridiculous to suggest that Purdue should be in the East while MSU would be in the west. Competitive balance can shift over time.

Josh on 12/14/2012 @ 10:14am EDT Said:

I’d have to go with East\West alignment as that makes the most sense competitively and geographically. West: Wisconsin, Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, Illinois, Northwestern, Michigan State….East: Ohio State, Penn State, Indiana, Purdue, Rutgers, Maryland, Michigan. Both divisions preserve tradional rivalries as well as set up for nice annual crossover games (Wisc\OSU, Mich\MSU, Neb\PSU, Iowa\Purdue, Minnesota\Maryland, NW\Rutgers, and Illinois\Indy). While the latter half of those games might not be the most interesting, they do still offer competitive balance based on the way some programs are on the rise.

jerseyjon34 on 12/14/2012 @ 11:22am EDT Said:

North(west) – Nebraska, Iowa, Minny, Wisc, Mich, MSU, NW

South(east) – Illinois, Indy, Purdue, Osu, Psu, Mrylnd, Rtgrs

Solves competitive balance issue by splitting Ohio and Michigan. Also keeps PSU happy by teaming it with RU and UMd which, allegedly, is the reason those 2 schools were invited.

corey west on 12/14/2012 @ 11:24am EDT Said:

Put Michigan St on the West side and Purdue to the East It would help balance the competition some, not completely but some!

HutHutHike on 12/14/2012 @ 11:28am EDT Said:

Inner -Outer puts an unfair burden on those teams in terms of additional travel time and expense. It effects the marching bands and fans as well. More expense, more travel. If that option is chosen, it indicates to me that the Big Ten has too much of a football culture. Isn’t that one of the reasons cited for PSU’s sanctions?

Will on 12/14/2012 @ 11:37am EDT Said:

Div 1. Nebraska, Wisconsin, Michigan State, Northwestern, Iowa, Minnesota, Purdue.
Div 2. Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State, Illinois, Indiana, Rutgers, Maryland.

Pretty even in power as of recently, pretty fair in the way of travel.

Don’t care what you call them (Divisional names).

jay on 12/14/2012 @ 11:47am EDT Said:

East and West. Except split UM and MSU and let them have a protected cross like IU and Purdue. Ohio State and Michigan must be in the same division. We also need to go to at least 9, however I would prefer a 10 game conference schedule. When we add two more schools from the east we send IU over to the West division. Makes perfect sense. 7 div games + 2/3 cross division games is a must

jay on 12/14/2012 @ 11:49am EDT Said:

edit to my above post. I was assuming we are going to 16 teams. 6 division games if we stay at 14 + 3/4 cross division games

Mississippi Husker on 12/14/2012 @ 11:50am EDT Said:

For the idiot Michigan fan who made the comment about Nebraska fans lack of attendance at the B1G Chapionship game…….seriously? The announcer even made a comment during the game that the attendance was announced at like 43,000 and he estimated 30,000 of it was NU fans. Nobody travels better than Nebraska fans….PERIOD! He also later commented that despite the lopsided result, most of those fans were still there at the end. People need to get their facts straight before making idiotic statements.

MarketWiz on 12/14/2012 @ 11:54am EDT Said:

Keep adding teams until there are 10 divisions so that the name Big 10 makes sense. You’ll probably need to look outside the US to get enough teams though. Get into the emerging markets before it’s too late and the SEC gets there first. China is basically one market, just one school and BTN will be included in the basic package for all 1 billion people. India might require more teams to be profitable, but think of the potential.

Nick Czerkies on 12/14/2012 @ 12:24pm EDT Said:

Perhaps split them based on when they joined the conference… The 7 oldest conference members and the 7 newest. (How many Chrter members are there?)

Matt on 12/14/2012 @ 12:34pm EDT Said:

Go with what makes sense! Option #2 is the right choice. Stop whining about traditional competitive balance.. Remember Michigan state about 5 years ago? yea neither does anyone else! Competitive balance will be on and off in each division. You keep Ohio State and Michigan in the same division to keep the rivalry sacred.(None of this “well if you don’t want to play two weeks in a row, maybe you should move the game to a different time of the year nonsense!) You’re destroying tradition if you even suggest that! Option #3 is still a terrible choice because although it creates competitive balance, it kills all other sports when it comes to travel arrangements. Did we all think that football was the only sport? NO! You still have to accommodate sports such as woman’s volleyball and men’s basketball and all the others.. Maryland is about 1200 miles away from Nebraska. That’s financially crippling… Enough with this Leaders and Legends crap too.. The SEC has sadly won the last 7, possibly 8 championships.. We look like the weakest conference to suggest that we are legendary caliber when we suck currently. May as well just call the divisions “Ignorance” and “Arrogance”. If we go to 16 teams (that many people suggest).. try and get teams worth grabbing! Enough with the “take the money and run” option with all these schools that haven’t proved anything! (Maryland, and Rutgers) If you’re so worried about ‘AAU’ membership than why haven’t you kicked Nebraska out for losing it? If you won’t punish them.. maybe you should strive for two teams.. Oklahoma.. and Texas! That would be a huge statement, and you wouldn’t be the laughing stock of all conferences. Obviously put them in the western division and save the NU-OU rivalry. I only have one more thing.. Everyone is so worried about competitive balance within divisions.. really? Let’s look at a blue print of the SEC.. Alabama, LSU, Arkansas, Auburn, Ole Miss, Miss-State, A&M.. That’s one division.. Guess what.. It may be competitively imbalanced at times.. but they’ve won the national championship for the past seven years. Personally.. I believe Jim Delaney created these surveys just to please the big ten fan bases. I don’t think he’ll take any of what we have to say seriously and just make the vote between himself and the presidents.. that only care about money and not at all about tradition. Why do you think Notre Dame doesn’t want to join this conference? It destroys everything about tradition.

jack on 12/14/2012 @ 12:43pm EDT Said:

Put every possible game combination into a hat and have a BTN show where the AD or Coach picks who he’s going to play in week 1, week 2, week 3 etc. True “luck of the draw”. No protected rivals.

lonnie on 12/14/2012 @ 1:40pm EDT Said:

I don’t like any of the options need to be more balenced

dutch1257 on 12/14/2012 @ 1:56pm EDT Said:

Here is an interesting twist that really makes sense. Take the 7 schools that started the Big Ten in 1896 (minus Chicago), of Purdue, Minnesota, Illinois, Wisconsin, Northwestern and Michigan. Then add Ohio State (1912), to keep the Buckeyes & Wolverines in the same division (plus OSU has a little more legend than Indiana & Iowa in football), and call that Division the Legends Division, because 6 of them are the legendary schools that started up the Big Ten Conference. Then add up the rest of the schools to make the Leaders Division of Indiana, Iowa (both 1899), Michigan State, Penn State, Nebraska, Maryland and Rutgers. The schools on the farthest ends would be together in Nebraska & Iowa, along with Penn State, Maryland & Rutgers; along with Indiana & Michigan State in the middle. This alignment would truly represent the Legends & Leaders divisional names.

R. Chambers on 12/14/2012 @ 2:11pm EDT Said:

I really prefer the #2 division ity makes sence to me.

Jim McMillen on 12/14/2012 @ 2:19pm EDT Said:

Option 2 seems the best to me. I am not in favor of a 3 division conference but a four division would work if the Big 10 goes to 16 teams. I would like to see better names than what they have now. I think Woody and Bo would be good choices!

Nathan on 12/14/2012 @ 2:39pm EDT Said:

Big Ten Band Member here who has to travel very far for several games. Here is my two cents. (I hope the formatting holds.)

I think it should be East/West as the B1G proposes. Here is why:

Eastern Division
(The eastern division would be divided into the “Featured Teams” and the “Along for the
Ride Teams”)
-Featured Teams
MICHIGAN: Michigan has a storied football program and is always a huge bowl draw.
However, the real driving factor in their divisional alignment is they need to stay with
Ohio State, nobody wants to see Michigan v. Ohio State back to back weeks at the end
of the season and at the B1G Championship game.
OHIO STATE: In the same boat as Michigan, these teams are joined at the hip with
further alignment. Additionally, they will bring along the likes of Penn State.
PENN STATE: Will go wherever Ohio State goes to allow for rivalry game.
MICHIGAN STATE: Will go wherever Michigan goes to allow for rivalry game.
-Along for the Ride Teams
RUTGERS: Part of the reason the B1G was interested in Rutgers besides NYC TV
market was to give Penn State geographical rivals besides Ohio State. As Penn State
goes Rutgers goes.
MARYLAND: See reason for Rutgers (change TV markets)
Indiana: Having selected the 6 most eastern teams for a division you take the 7th most
eastern and throw it in the group.
Western Division
(In reality the western division would just be all teams left over after selecting the eastern

dutch1257 on 12/14/2012 @ 2:39pm EDT Said:

With the Legends Division of Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Northwestern, Ohio State, Purdue and Wisconsin. And the Leaders Division of Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan State, Penn State, Nebraska and Rutgers…there would be some great cross-over rivalry games. Such as Michigan-Michigan State, Ohio State-Penn State, Wisconsin-Nebraska, Minnesota-Iowa, Purdue-Indiana, Northwestern-Rutgers, and Illinois-Maryland. I believe this divisional realignment is what best fits the Legends & Leaders of the Big Ten Conference.

JonSt on 12/14/2012 @ 2:40pm EDT Said:

Move to 16 teams as soon as possible. Divide schools into 4 pods but keep 2 divisions but rotate the pods each year. For example: year 1 East & Central in the same division; year 2 East & North in the same division; year 3 East & West in the same division, repeat.

The best part of this is the schedule. Each school would play the 3 teams in its pod + 1 rivalry game every year no matter what. Then, each school would play the other 4 teams in the division each year. This would create the most fair division winners too (they play pretty much the same schedule).

And it ensures that all B1G teams play each other at minimum once every 3 years.

East: PSU, MD, RU, ???
Central: OSU, WIS, PUR, IND
North: UM, MSU, NW, ILL
West: NU, IA, MN, ???

(if Delaney goes with 2 new eastern schools than one could move PSU to the Central and WIS to the West)

dutch1257 on 12/14/2012 @ 2:45pm EDT Said:

Dear BTN…I cannot post my last two entries on your survey questions, because I had used it twice before and now I cannot post except on this medium of comments. Will you please send my last 2 entries to the Big Ten Office with the survey questions, because I really want the Big Ten to receive these last two entries I have made prior to this one. Thank you.

Ni on 12/14/2012 @ 2:47pm EDT Said:

From the current divisions: Just move Wisconsin West, and add MD & RU to the East. Keep the 1 protected crossover game. This would keep all the rivalries and have a sensible geographic split.

schriznoeder on 12/14/2012 @ 4:40pm EDT Said:

Here’s my plan…

Expand to 20 teams (yes 20), and split into four five-team divisions as follows:
WEST – Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska
WEST CENTRAL – Indiana, Illinois, Northwestern, Purdue, Wisconsin
EAST CENTRAL – Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Pittsburgh, Virginia
EAST – Duke, Maryland, North Carolina, Penn State, Rutgers

*Please note: All new members are part of the AAU, which will appease the Big Ten brass. And many of the important rivalries (Ohio State-Michigan, Indiana-Purdue, Kansas-Missouri, Duke-North Carolina) are kept intact by this arrangement.

Each year on a rotating basis, the divisions pair up to form two “super divisions.” For example, in 2014 the West and West Central divisions would pair up, as would the East and East Central divisions. Then in 2015, it would be West and East Central in one super division and East and West Central in the other. The ten teams in each super division play the other teams in their respective super division round-robin style (ala the new Big XII), for a total of nine conference games – also appeasing the Big Ten brass. The winners of each super division then play in the Big Ten Championship game. Viola!

I know, this arrangement sounds a little far-fetched, but just think about it for a minute. First off, it greatly expands the footprint of the Big Ten and adds massive amounts of fuel to the revenue-making machine that this conference has become. Secondly, rather than being stuck with two stagnant divisions where one side can become far more dominant than the other (think old Big XII North), this arrangement keeps the balance of power in check. Thirdly, even though some of the new teams don’t bring much to the table football-wise (but really, neither did Rutgers or Maryland), it’s balanced out by the fact that the new Big Ten would easily become the most dominant basketball conference in the country. And lastly, I realize that several of the teams in my hypothetical conference have recently moved to, or are committed to moving to, other conferences. But I find it hard to believe that they wouldn’t at least pick up the phone and listen if Jim Delaney were to call.

Ira on 12/14/2012 @ 4:50pm EDT Said:

You are going to split Purdue and IU… Seriously????? That is a longer running rivalry than anything else in the country except Minnesota/Wisconsin!!! Option 2 would be grat if you put MSU in the West and Purdue in the East.

Michael Stephens on 12/14/2012 @ 6:17pm EDT Said:

Ohio State and the team up north have to be in the same division

Seth Meyer on 12/14/2012 @ 6:23pm EDT Said:

Option 2 its the most organized and senseful idea.

Teddy Ball Game on 12/14/2012 @ 8:51pm EDT Said:

Travel arrangements/expense and geographical rivalries should be the primary considerations. There are quality teams in both divisions using the east-west alignment, and the reality is that the quality of the teams tends to be cyclical anyway. An East-West split makes the most sense and is the most respectful option for both the schools and the fans. Regarding the addition of teams #15 and 16, a balance of east and west would be helpful. Adding Kansas and North Carolina are solid options. Both are quality academic institutions and great basketball schools. North Carolina would add the extra benefit of being an excellent location for the December B1G Championship game, since many fans prefer a warmer climate for travel games. Charlotte or Raleigh-Durham would make for a much better venue and greater attendance than Indianapolis or any current B1G city.

Teddy Ball Game on 12/14/2012 @ 9:08pm EDT Said:

The Inner/Outer option is completely disregards the fans and the schools. Luckily, I don’t think the school presidents would allow it.

Lastly, Michigan and OSU should be in the same division a la Alabama – LSU.

fxlion on 12/14/2012 @ 9:14pm EDT Said:

I like the Inner/Outer. In fact, I’ve advocated this elsewhere. It is competitively balanced, puts Michigan and OSU in the same division, and reunites Wisconsin with their traditional rivals while still giving them some east coast presence. I call this model the Sandwich Model. As I understand this, this is a football-only divisional alignment. It doesn’t have to be employed for other sports. Other sports are different and in some cases, divisions don’t make sense in other sports.

East/West isn’t bad, except that it is a bit unbalanced competitively, and with Indiana and Purdue split into different divisions, you would need protected crossovers, which takes up one cross divisional game. The drawback is longer periods between playing each other. If they did this approach, they would need to resolve season ending games. In this East West model, those could be: OSU v. Michigan, PSU v. MSU, UMD v. Rutgers, IU v. Purdue, Ill. v. NW, Minny v. Wisc., Iowa v. Neb.

polishpower909 on 12/14/2012 @ 10:02pm EDT Said:

Split the state of Michigan (Wolverines to the East, Spartans to the West). It’s geographically sound and competitively balanced. Those 2 can still play each other every year as permanent crossovers. Michigan State has a budding rivalry with Wisconsin, and gets to play in Chicago every other year like they wanted anyway. East is still plenty strong with the big 3 of OSU, UM and PSU. Nebraska and Wisky get more competition. EAST: Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State, Maryland, Rutgers, Indiana, Purdue WEST: Nebraska, Wisconsin, Iowa, Minnesota, Michigan St., Illinois, Northwestern

Eric on 12/15/2012 @ 1:16am EDT Said:

Let’s think about east-west for a second. Here’s a list of 3 star + recruits by state (New Jersey not included, the map gives us their minimum).

http://www.sbnation.com/college-football-recruiting/2012/6/20/3095257/college-football-recruiting-money-2013-tennessee It does not include the number for New Jersey, but based on where it falls on other lists we can expect it to fall toward the top.

1. Ohio (79.3)
2. Maryland (48.3)
3. Pennsylvania (42)
4. Illinois (37.8)
5. Michigan (33)
—New Jersey, based on map on link above falls no lower than here, likely higher
7. Indiana 20.5
8. Iowa 11
9. Wisconsin 9
10. Minnesota 7.8
11. Nebraska 4.3

If we go east-west, 5 of the top 6 states for recruiting are going to be in the same division. The east would also have 3 of the 4 biggest names and a much larger population base with a lot of big markets on its side. East-west is almost guaranteed to make the eastern side the side that is followed more long term (not that the west won’t be better some years).

Now let’s think about keeping the same divisions or moving Illinois west and keeping the same divisions. Then we have to keep locked crossovers, meaning 7 of the 8 conference games are all locked. That means only 1 game a year to use to play the other 6 teams. That means more than a decade between times a school gets to host each one of them. That’s not a conference, that’s an alliance.

With 14, the only configuration that loves most of the issues is the inner-outer. It has issues, but it’s the least bad by far.

Jeff Kallhoff on 12/15/2012 @ 9:15am EDT Said:

Adaptive Divisions. Take the final standings of the conference each year and divide the divisions evenly, so long as to keep the rivalries we all love intact. Just start at the top and put every other team in the opposite division. ie… for this next year it would be OSU – div1, Nev – div2, MSU – div1, PSU – div2. and so on. This way the divisions get divided evenly each year based on the performance of each team, and our favorite games remain.

kermit on 12/15/2012 @ 9:34am EDT Said:

east-west makes the most sense. you can still preserve instate rivalries with certain protected games each year regardless of division. how bout adding syracuse and cincinnatti as 15th & 16th teams? both are solid sports schools (football and/or basketball) and fit well with big ten geography including eastward expansion interests.

buckgrad19 on 12/15/2012 @ 9:47am EDT Said:

Mich and OSU must be in the same division. If you have that as a protected game, and give them a major advantage of saving it for the last game of the season, then it has to be a potential for winner takes all. They both have the biggest national names in the league as it is, and showcasing them as the last game of the season helps further their perceptions as the two teams to watch. Giving yet another chance to meet the very next weekend in Indy is way too favorable. You either get the rivalry in division and last game of the season, or protected in a crossover but random scheduling like everyone else. I’m a Buckeye alum and I don’t think that either of our schools need it set up so that week can go through our division undefeated, meet the last game of the season as the only game that matters in the conference, and then meet again in Indy for who goes to the Rose Bowl. It puts the other 12 members at a competitive disadvantage, not from a win/loss competitive standpoint, but from a these are the only two you need to watch. Much rather have an undefeated OSU/UM game in the Legends and an undefeated Wisc/NEB -Wisc/MSU – NEB/MSU in the Leaders, then the champ game.

Mike on 12/15/2012 @ 10:22am EDT Said:

Out of the choices, #2- the geographical divisions. This makes sense to keep the close border/geographical rivals playing each other every year. Penn State has more in common with Maryland, Rutgers, Ohio State than Wisconsin and Nebraska do. Also, think of the fan bases travelling to these places. Do you really think that the great fans of Nebraska will be excited to travel to New Jersey every other year? Maybe the first time so they can say that they were there. But, after that first year, NO. Unless the divisions are split between East and West, please tell Maryland and Rutgers to NOT expand their football stadiums because they will not need it. The fans of the western states; Wisconsin, Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota will not support having to travel to New Jersey and Maryland to games every other year. It makes more sense that Penn State, Ohio State, Michigan and Michigan State will. 8 hours versus 16+ hours of driving to a game is a no brainer!! It won’t happen.

Michigan and Ohio State must be changed to being in the same division. Just having the opportunity to see this game possibly twice in the same year would be great that everyone would love to see. Blow out tv ratings for, possibly, 2 weeks in a row!

Competitive balance should not matter in the realignment. Geographical proximity should. Fans travelling to and travel costs to the universities along with travel time and lost school time for the players should matter more. Teams are up and down every year and things even out over time.

The division names should be changed to; “LAKES” and “PLAINS.”

Go Bucks!

Victors on 12/15/2012 @ 11:19am EDT Said:

Div A:
Michigan State

Div B:
Ohio State
Penn State

You have 2 historically great teams on each side (Michigan/Nebraska and Ohio State/Penn State), another few teams that could challenge every few years (Northwestern/Michigan State and Wisconsin/Rutgers) and then some crap teams (Iowa/Minnesota/Illinois and Purdue/Indiana/Maryland). PSU gets to keep with the east coast teams, most of the far west teams stay together (except Wisconsin, but f*** them).

The Husker Daddy O on 12/15/2012 @ 1:10pm EDT Said:

Think of the average fan when doing the spilt. We enjoy going to Husker sporting events as a family and drive. I know we cannot drive to the eastcoast and if we do go…it cuts down on all the other sporting Husker events we can go to. Look at the things going on in this country! College sporting events = family time and doing things together with others…Please think about the cost of travel when doing whatever B1G plans on doing.

dutch1257 on 12/15/2012 @ 5:43pm EDT Said:

BTN!…I need to redo the survey and I cannot because it will not allow me…is there an e-mail address that will go with the surveys that I can send in instead?
Thank you.

    BTN.com staff on 12/17/2012 @ 10:23am EDT Said:

    Unfortunately in this case, we only allow one survey per computer. You can try from another computer if you feel that strongly about it. Thanks.

RUich on 12/15/2012 @ 8:26pm EDT Said:

trying to determine competative balance is really a slippery slope. Yes, you have recent or overall history, but things can change in a hurry and you could easily have one division with a leader only the fourth or fifth best in the league. Add NCAA sanctions like you are seeing right now and you could really have a bad balance. after making sure the real historical rivalries are kept in place, go for a fairness in travel.

Aaron Weiss on 12/16/2012 @ 12:07am EDT Said:

Go with option 3. It makes the most sense for competitive balance and does make some geographical sense. Most importantly, you protect traditional rivalries like Ohio State/Michigan from ever having to be played twice in one year. OHIO STATE AND MICHIGAN NEED TO BE IN THE SAME DIVISION!!! Some people may object to the geographical set up of option 3 but no set up will ever be geographically and competitively perfect simply because of the distance that this conference covers anyways so you might as well go with the option that protects traditional rivalries with the best competitive balance and option 3 fits that description to a T.

Aaron Weiss on 12/16/2012 @ 12:19am EDT Said:

If you don’t go with option 3 then just move Ohio State and Illinois over to Legends and move Nebraska and Minnesota over to Leaders and put Maryland and Rutgers in separate divisions. Again, traditional rivalries are protected, competitive balance is clearly achieved and it is not too geographically tasking.

Scott on 12/16/2012 @ 2:05am EDT Said:

Competitive balance should not be a factor. Michigan and Ohio State belong in the same division. East/West followed by Inner/Outer. Big Ten, please make this happen. Don’t tarnish the greatest rivalry in all of North American sports by allowing a rematch of Michigan/Ohio State in the championship game.

CB on 12/16/2012 @ 9:08am EDT Said:

EAST and WEST. No question about it.

Aaron Weiss on 12/16/2012 @ 4:09pm EDT Said:

Scott, while I disagree that competitive balance should not be a factor, I say a huge “Amen!” to putting Ohio State and Michigan in the same division. Come on Big Ten! Make the right call like you should have when you first set up these divisions. Move Ohio State and Michigan into the same division. No ifs, ands or buts about it!

FortWaynePurdueBoiler on 12/16/2012 @ 5:06pm EDT Said:

All this discussion is mute since we will add Georgia Tech, UNC, Virginia, and Kansas soon.

Lumen Veritatis on 12/16/2012 @ 10:24pm EDT Said:

I voted to get rid of Maryland and Rutgers. What a disgrace to a once-proud conference. That needs to be the starting point before we even start talking about reworking the divisions. And don’t get me started on this bright cyan color scheme…

Tom Fox on 12/16/2012 @ 10:25pm EDT Said:

Option X: Yearly Powerball Alignment

Set up a yearly selection event where all teams are reshuffled at random using a Powerball-like machine with each teams’ logo instead of numbers. 1st ball with team logo goes to Leaders, 2nd ball with team logo goes to Legends, 3rd ball with team logo goes to Leaders, and back and forth until all teams are randomly selected and assigned to a sub-division. Keep 1 locked rival/game date that does not change from year to year (in order to protect traditional rivalries like OSU vs MICH and PUR vs IU, etc). This will provide balance in the divisions, not necessarily every year, but from year to year as teams that are more dominant for a few years at a time, do not have the benefit of monopolizing their subdivision year after year, if such a subdivision is going through a weak stretch.

It also will give historic middle of the road teams an opportunity to advance every once in awhile, without being blessed with a Brees or Cousins, if one division does draw a slew of traditional powerhouse’s, and such a team lands in the opposite division with an easier road to the B10 championship.

McClane on 12/17/2012 @ 10:12am EDT Said:

I think adding Maryland and Rutgers to the leaders and moving Illinois to the Legends makes the most sense now. Most rivalry games and trophy games (except Illinois vs OSU) can be maintained with the protected cross division game. That game should be kept because maintaining traditional rivalry is critical and lets face it with seven teams to face in the other division there will be a team that you only play twice every six years in a home and home even when you go to a 9 game conference schedule. The 9 game conference schedule can help eliminate some of those early season games against small conference schools

I don’t mind OSU playing Michigan twice. Both games would mean something (need to get into the championship then need to win for a possible national title shot). I don’t think this rematch would happen that much and frankly I think we all know the B1G is going to 16 or 20 teams so OSU and Michigan can be in the same division then

CJ on 12/17/2012 @ 11:28am EDT Said:

Do really even need divisions? Go w/o divisions and just have the Top 2 teams play in the conference championship. That way you won’t have a .500 team winning it all b/c a couple other programs were on probation (no offense to Wisconsin, they played a great game).

Set-up a 9 game conference schedule, every school gets 2 preserved rivalries they play each year. Then, of the remaining 11, you play 7. Basically you skip every third year w/ a non-rival.

Elijah on 12/17/2012 @ 4:03pm EDT Said:

Option #2 all the way!

Chris on 12/17/2012 @ 5:10pm EDT Said:

Why don’t we just go get Virginia Tech and Virginia and move Indiana to the “West” and call it a day already at 16!

JB on 12/17/2012 @ 5:14pm EDT Said:

Option #2 and is not even close, this should not be a debate. The fact is the conferene dropped the ball the first time and now its time to do the right thing. Until the recent additions the SEC had it right East-West is the best option. And it boy has it worked out for that league. The rivalries are most maintained by East-West alignment and works for travel and competitiveness. Wisconsin not being with Minnesota, Iowa, and Nebraska makes no sense. Nobody would suggest separating LSU-Alabama or Georgia-Florida why are we no following that examples, those games are highlighted because they are usually for all the marbles, winner take all, for the chance to play for the laeague title.

Chris on 12/17/2012 @ 5:16pm EDT Said:

Or, add Virginia Tech and Virginia and have a North-West/South-East division. Michigan, MSU, Northwestern, Illinois, Nebraska, Wisconsin Minnesota, Iowa in the NW and the other 8: Ohio State, Indiana, Purdue, Penn State, Maryland, Rutgers, VT, and Virginia in SE

Kevin Hamilton on 12/17/2012 @ 6:00pm EDT Said:

I am a Nebraska long time season ticket holder who has been to every stadium in the B12 conference we left. I like the east/west layout as presented as it will allow us to continue our yearly roadtrips to a few division away games without breaking the bank. We will also mix in the longer games along the way. The way it is now we will watch from home as we have been to Iowa and Minnesota over the years already.
I do agree that the east division will be the better conference the first few years but I think the West will get better with time.

sfields2@indy.rr.com on 12/17/2012 @ 8:38pm EDT Said:

I was thinking North and South Divisions:
Michigan State

Ohio State
Penn State

Still maintain inter-divisional rivals ie: Purdue – Iowa, OSU – Michigan, etc. I know some these are made up while are are not but I like this line-up much better for both Football and Basketball . North and South makes more sense.

Aaron Weiss on 12/17/2012 @ 9:24pm EDT Said:

Listening to the discussion on conference realignment on the Big Ten Football Report today made me absolutely sick! When Dave Revsine asked the other three commentators how the Big Ten should realign the conference they all said to keep the same divisions plus 1?!?! Are you kidding me?!?! That idiocy just staggers me! You’ve got to protect traditional rivalries and you’ve got to keep Ohio State and Michigan from having to play each other twice. This is a no brainer! I hope Jim Delany doesn’t listen to there ridiculous reasoning. Gerry DiNardo even suggested that once they get to 16 teams that they should divide it North and South?!?! North and South makes very little sense. If you’re going to divide it geographically, East and West is clearly the best option. It’s much, much easier to draw the line that way and it still protects traditional rivalries and achieves a decent amount of competitive stability. Come on guys! Use your heads for goodness sakes!

Buckeye Fan on 12/18/2012 @ 1:42pm EDT Said:

East – West with minor adjustments to preserve long-standing matchups.

East: Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State, Rutgers, Illinois, Maryland, Indiana

West: Wisconsin, Michigan State, Nebraska, Iowa, northwestern, Minnesota, Purdue

Each team has a protected cross division rival, which are in the order listed above. Moving to a 9 game conference schedule also allows each school to play every other one on average of no less than once every three years. With this set up, the only trophy games that are not annual fixtures are Mich. vs Minn., Illinois vs. Purdue, and MSU vs. Ind. While the top three teams in the East are stronger, the West is stronger four through seven.

Go Bucks! on 12/18/2012 @ 9:45pm EDT Said:

For starters OSU and Michigan must be in different divisions. The answer is simple, go North and South. It is a clean and easy thing to do, and most importantly, keeps the conferences 2 flagship programs in separate divisions.

Aaron Weiss on 12/18/2012 @ 11:26pm EDT Said:

Go Bucks!(which I’m probably sure you aren’t even a real Buckeyes fan) North and South is irrational and makes almost no sense. East and West is obviously the best way to go and most importantly it puts Ohio State and Michigan in the same division where they belong. Big Ten, please do not listen to absurd comments like the one immediately above.

GoBlue on 12/19/2012 @ 12:28am EDT Said:

OK…I hate to say I agree with a Buckeye fan, but Buckeye Fan’s comment at 1:42 on 12/18 is spot on. Go east and west with one minor adjustment to better preserve competitive balance — Purdue goes east, MSU goes west. I agree with his protected crossovers as well.

Don on 12/19/2012 @ 1:10am EDT Said:

As a cornhusker fan i understand how important this realignment is, when the big 8 changed to the big 12, the nebraska oklahoma rivalry was pretty much ruined because we didn’t play them every year, i am gonna to say they need to really emphasize preserving the traditions and rivalry games that are already in place because that is what makes college football so special, i wish the big ten good luck figuring this alignment out.

John O'Toole on 12/19/2012 @ 6:04pm EDT Said:

I agree with hawkeyepapyrus, J T Grant, Kyle Shadd, Jesse, mauihusker, polishpower909, and Josh who all left comments favoring the following divisional configuration; East/South: Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State, Maryland, Rutgers, Indiana, Purdue – West/North: Nebraska, Wisconsin, Michigan St., Iowa, Northwestern, Illinois, Minnesota. Please consider what at least eight different posters have considered to be the optimal alignment for these divisions.

CJ on 12/20/2012 @ 10:23am EDT Said:

Survey doesn’t work properly. Usually high rankings mean good results. Not in your survey. Then once you click on a number it inputs the rest and they can’t be changed. Don’t trust your survey results…they will be skewed. This coming from a veteran market researcher.

Regarding conferences…imagine that youre Maryland that has just left the ACC. You now find that you’re giving up close rivalries with fellow east coast schools to play…Iowa, Minnesota and Nebraska? That’s not an effective strategy to win the east coast.

Balance and proximity need to be the top two priorities. East/West of some sort with MI, MSU and IL in the west. Current Leaders/Legends is close.

    BTN.com staff on 12/20/2012 @ 10:44am EDT Said:

    Thanks, CJ. We explicitly spell out that “1” is your favorite and “3” is the least favorite. And we’re not seeing that other issue on our end.

Marty Cecil on 12/20/2012 @ 3:44pm EDT Said:

To Mike: That’s because we ARE Gods! I don’t care what the Big 10,whoops 11,whoops, 12 and 13 do;as long as Ohio State and The Team Up North are in the same division!

JSteve on 12/21/2012 @ 12:00am EDT Said:

None of these,

You don’t need divisions at all. It would be a million times better to do it my way. It would work like this.
Each team plays 5 schools annually, and plays 4 alternating schools to make a 9 game schedule. That way each team would play 5 schools 100 percent of the time and the remaining 8 would be played 50 percent of the time. The championship game would be determined by best record and then a series of tiebreakers biased against destructive rematches.

The advantage is that there would be a ton of flexibility when determining the schedule to maintain regional sense, maintain rivalries and maintain competitive balance. Also, you wouldn’t have anymore 8-5 teams in the title game. Every other divisional arrangement with a conference of this size sacrifices far too much in terms of national tv matchups, regional sense, competitive balance, conference unity etc.

I’m telling you B1G, you’ll be WAY better off if you ditch the divisions all together. Email me if you want more details, I’ve got an example of how the schedules would work in a word document.

dutch1257 on 12/22/2012 @ 10:53am EDT Said:

Notre Dame & Missouri need to join the Big Ten. Here’s the look with a 10-game slate:
COASTAL BELT: Notre Dame, Penn State, Rutgers, Maryland
CAPITAL BELT: Michigan, Michigan State, Northwestern, Indiana
CENTRAL BELT: Ohio State, Missouri, Purdue, Illinois
CIVICAL BELT: Nebraska, Wisconsin, Iowa, Minnesota

Sean on 12/23/2012 @ 11:33am EDT Said:

West- Nebraska, Wisconsin , m state , Minn, Iowa , Illinois, northwestern… East – zero state, Michigan , Penn st , Purdue , Rutgers, Maryland , Indiana PERFECT !!!!!

sean on 12/23/2012 @ 11:55am EDT Said:

and it keeps geography to minimum!! times they are a changing , fill more stadiums with less travel!!!

dutch1257 Brad Holland on 12/27/2012 @ 12:14am EDT Said:

Big Ten Conference
Honoring Legends. Building Leaders.
Coastal Band: Ohio State, Penn State, Rutgers, Maryland
Central Band: Michigan, Michigan State, Purdue, Indiana
Capital Band: *Notre Dame, Wisconsin, Northwestern, Illinois
Civical Band: Nebraska, Iowa, *Missouri, Minnesota
* Expansion Schools

Ryan on 12/28/2012 @ 11:41am EDT Said:

Add Boston College and Notre Dame.

Leaders Division: Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Wisconsin
Legacy Division: Michigan, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Purdue
Legends Division: Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern
Liberty Division: Boston College, Maryland, Penn State, Rutgers

aroznowski on 12/28/2012 @ 5:05pm EDT Said:

It has dawned on me. I am pretty sure that I have figured out a divisional alignment that protects the Ohio State-Michigan rivalry and all trophy games while maintaining competitive balance. (Make sure to turn the Maryland-Rutgers matchup into a trophy game.) Here it goes.
Legends Division: Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Penn State, Wisconsin
Leaders Division: Illinois, Indiana, Nebraska, Northwestern, Ohio State, Purdue, Rutgers
The cross-division foes that would meet annually would be Iowa & Nebraska, Maryland & Rutgers, Michigan & Ohio State, Michigan State & Indiana, Minnesota & Illinois, Penn State & Purdue, and Wisconsin & Northwestern. There would be a nine-game conference schedule. Each team would play every other team at least once every three seasons and would host every other team at least once every six seasons.

dutch1257 Brad Holland on 12/29/2012 @ 5:43am EDT Said:

There was a question in the survey whether we should keep the “Big Ten” name, or change it to something else. Well, I am a proud northerner and yankee, as I believe all Big Ten fans are. The North is what saved our great country and abolished slavery. All of the Big Ten schools are in the North, and that’s why I believe we should embrace our geography and culture, and not expand south any farther. I believe we should change our league’s name to “The Big North Conference, or BNC”. Yes, I know there has been some demographic shifts in our country to the south and west, but I do know our big cities in the North will always be here in the future. The Big Ten Conference resides in the most populated region in our country.

The North will always have big cities of New York, Chicago, Detroit, Philadelphia, Boston, Washington DC, Baltimore, Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati, Minneapolis-St.Paul, Indianapolis, Newark, Pittsburgh, Milwaukee, Syracuse, Buffalo, Rochester, Providence, Hartford, Toledo, Akron, Dayton, Des Moines, Omaha and even Toronto. This is our home and our region, and we should all be proud to be Yankee Doodle Dandies!

You can’t help what history has already dictated with the Civil War. I mean the SEC fans still wave the rebel flag for crying out loud. We should wave the 34-star yankee flag at football games up north during the Big Ten…err..Big North games. We have 11 states in our conference. Nebraska was a slave-free territory during the Civil War. Maryland was a slave state that never seceded from the Union. Of the 85,000 enlistments from Maryland, 2/3 of them fought for the Union, and Washington DC, our nation’s capital was right in the middle of the divider. Maryland is “The Old Line State”.

Forget about Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia Tech and Florida State to the Big Ten. We should concentrate our expansion into the Northern states with schools like Notre Dame, Syracuse, Boston College, Pittsburgh, Connecticut or Iowa State for the Big North. We probably will not get Notre Dame (which is a real shame), but we should go after Syracuse and Boston College so we are totally all North in “The Big North Conference”.

I don’t know how other folks feel about this subject, but I would suspect most would feel the same as I do. I’m just afraid if we go outside of our region and culture, and into the south…that these southern schools will want to leave someday to be with their own kind. And that’s what I’m advocating is for us to stay with our own kind in the northern states. Syracuse would bring in the rest of the NYC market, along with the Upstate cities of Buffalo, Syracuse, Rochester, Albany and Toronto. And Boston College would bring in of course, Boston and the rest of the New England states with cities of Providence and Hartford.

At any rate, I’d like to hear other folks views on this subject, and let’s all be proud of our heritage and a possible name change to The Big North Conference, with no numbers needed!

dutch1257 on 12/29/2012 @ 7:26am EDT Said:

The Big Ten…or…Big North Conference should go after Syracuse & Boston College. Syracuse was in the AAU from 1966 to 2011, and Boston College is ranked #31 nationally in the University rankings. Only Northwestern & Michigan are ranked higher in the Big Ten. Boston College could eventually bring Notre Dame in who is ranked #17 academically. And Syracuse ranked #59, could bring in AAU member Pitt (ranked #61), with Notre Dame as 17th & 18th schools in the Big Ten, only if Notre Dame ever joins the Big Ten someday. Otherwise, Syracuse & Boston College would be great additions and would expand the Big Ten footprint Northeast. Boston College is about the same size as Northwestern, about 14,000 students each. And Syracuse is the same size as Virginia, around 20,000 students apiece. Both BC and Syracuse are private schools like Northwestern & Notre Dame.

Here is how the Big Ten could look like with Syracuse & BC as the 15th & 16th schools, and *ND & *Pitt as the 17th & 18th schools:


LEADERS EAST: Boston College, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, Penn State, Rutgers, Syracuse, *Pittsburgh

LEGENDS WEST: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Purdue, Wisconsin, *Notre Dame

My oh my, what a great conference we would have then in the Big North. The Big Dipper with the North Star could be the Big North Conference logo.

Eagles, Terrapins, Wolverines, Spartans, Buckeyes, Nittany Lions, Scarlet Knights, Orange, Panthers, Fighting Illini, Hoosiers, Hawkeyes, Golden Gophers, Cornhuskers, Wildcats, Boilermakers, Badgers, Fighting Irish………………Go Big North Conference!

JOSEF JUNIOR on 12/30/2012 @ 4:20pm EDT Said:


Ohio State
Penn State
Michigan State

john f on 12/31/2012 @ 6:18pm EDT Said:

Option 2 makes sense. In time both divisions will attain competitive balance. It makes geographical sense and gives us a chance to change the current names. I also feel the divisions should be for All sports

Eric on 1/1/2013 @ 10:29pm EDT Said:

Nine conference games and inner outer accomplishes most of what the conference wants. Maryland and Rutgers could have one of Ohio State or Michigan on the schedule 6 out of every 7 years (and Penn State and Nebraska on every year). Ohio State and Michigan moves in division. Wisconsin is with western teams. Penn State is with eastern teams. Divisions are balanced. Population/media between divisions is balanced (people supporting east west keep forgetting that all the big recruiting states and most the major media centers would all be in the east).

The schedule is the big thing though. You play 43% of the other division with 9 conference games and no locked crossovers. Even with 9 conference games, if you keep a locked crossover, you only play the remaining 6 teams 33%. Please Big Ten make this feel like a conference and go with inner-outer.

saginawspartan on 1/3/2013 @ 8:23pm EDT Said:

First, Michigan & Michigan State should be in SEPARATE DIVISIONS! An in-state championship game would be wild! Why are they in the same division?

Rich on 1/4/2013 @ 1:58pm EDT Said:

Go with east/west alignment except put MSU in the west and Purdue in the east. MSU and MI will play as a protected rivalry early in the season and you preserve the OSU-MI-PSU rivalries. MSU can further develop rivalries with WI and Neb. Set up Neb with OSU for another protected cross divisional game that could also be played early. You have to go to 9 conference games – 6 divisional, 1 protected cross divisional, 2 rotating the other division so you play everyone every three years. Call the western division Central based on time zone.

Brad Holland dutch1257 on 1/11/2013 @ 5:17pm EDT Said:

The Best Thing the Big Ten can do is expand with Georgia Tech & Florida State. Yes, FSU is not in the AAU…but neither is Nebraska and FSU is ranked alot higher in the National University Rankings than the Huskers. The bottom line is getting 2 great fly-over states down south in metro Atlanta & Tallahassee for BTN subscribers. Plus, 2 states loaded with High School Football talent, along with a tons of alumni from the Big Ten in Georgia & Florida. This is how the Big Ten could look with 16 members:

Honoring LEGENDS.
Building LEADERS.

Florida State, Georgia Tech, Maryland, Rutgers

Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue

Illinois, Michigan, Michigan State, Northwestern

Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Wisconsin

The 4 Belts would rotate in a round-robin format to form 2 Divisions of Legends & Leaders. 2 Belts would form each Division for each season played. This way every Big Ten school plays every other Big Ten school at least once every 3-year cycle. This way the Central, Capital & Civical Belts would each align with the Coastal Belt once every 3 years. This would give Big Ten schools a chance to play games down in talent-rich states of Georgia, Florida…along with Maryland and New Jersey/New York.

So Hey Big Ten! Play it smart and add Georgia Tech & Florida State to total 16 schools!

Brendon on 1/15/2013 @ 3:13pm EDT Said:

East: Michigan, Indiana, Purdue, Ohio State, Penn State, Rutgers, Maryland

West: Michigan State, Illinois, Northwestern, Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota, Wisconsin

I like this one the best.

    saginawspartan on 1/15/2013 @ 11:48pm EDT Said:

    Just so long as the traditional Michigan v. Michigan State rivalry is NOT interrupted. Might be “across” divisions, but we can’t lose that game in the restructuring!!

Jon ST on 2/4/2013 @ 2:48pm EDT Said:

Move to a16 team B1G that would include 2 rotating 8-team divisions based on 4-pods of 4 teams each. A team would play its 3 pod rivals every year + 4 games in its division + 2 other B1G games.

Now lets talk Notre Dame. There has been surprisingly little discussion since everyone assumes they are set. Maybe the B1G could get ND in the 16 team-2 rotating divisions-4 pods model IF ND was allowed a 7 game conference schedule instead of a 9 game conference schedule. Imagine this pod set up:

EAST: PSU, MD, RU, team x
WEST: Neb, Wis, IA, MN

Every BIG team plays 9 games (3 in the pod+4 in the division+2 others). Let’s say we offer ND 7 B1G games every year (3 pod+4 division).

If ND is in the hunt for the division championship, the winner is determined by only the 7 games that they have in common with their competitor. i.e. ND is 6-1 in the B1G and MSU is 7-2 but 6-1 vs the same teams in division. Do you see what I am trying to say here? In this case, ND and MSU are tied with 6-1 records and you go to the head-to-head tiebreaker.

ND likes this because they only have 7 B1G games (3 of which they already play every year) and can still schedule 5 national games (USC, Stanford, Navy, etc).

The B1G finally gets ND and secures the NY market, a huge name, and lots of money. VA/NC/GT would be ok but those markets will never be as valuable (and the teams will never be very good) as NY and the NE corridor. Find a way to bring in Syracuse too and you got a lock.

From a B1G scheduling standpoint, it is awkword but I think still fair to other B1G teams as their records are being compared against the same 7 B1G teams.

What do you think?

Ed Sienkilewski U of Md., B.S.,MEd., Ph.D on 3/11/2013 @ 3:52pm EDT Said:

Having watched Maryland football since I was a student at Collage Park (1970’s), I believe that Maryland will never be a big time football program. When the administration decides to fire the coach after he is elected coach of the year in the ACC clearly shows they have no clue in how to build a winning program. Maryland will be bringing up the rear in any option chosen in realignment.

Dean on 3/16/2013 @ 11:43am EDT Said:

No matter the alignment, ALL Big Ten teams should play each other every year. Quit playing these soft, warm-up games or easy late season ones. East/West goes better with all sports divisions.

Stan on 4/23/2013 @ 5:09pm EDT Said:

Why should the Indiana schools split and not Michigan? It should be

North MI, OSU, PEN, Maryland, Rutgers, Minn, MSU

Sorry Wisconsion but I don’t want the two schools who aren’t Big Ten worthy in our division (Maryland and Rutgers.

    Ed Sienkilewski U of Md., BS, MEd, PhD on 4/23/2013 @ 7:10pm EDT Said:

    I like the East and West divisions. Maryland will again play Penn State every year. In the long history of the series Maryland has one win and one tie. I expect the same result with Ohio State and Michigan. It will be fun to see new teams at Byrd Stadium.

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