Andrew Weber-US PRESSWIRE
The Big Ten athletic directors are meeting in Chicago. Envision pitchers of water sitting on tables covered in linen clothes with the smell of Drakkar Noir in the air. Not much big news has emerged from the confab. The topic of the Big Ten’s move East was a hot one.
Indiana hasn’t been to a bowl since 2007. Kevin Wilson is getting the Hoosiers closer, going from one, to four, to five wins in his three seasons in Bloomington. A postseason trip almost happened last year, if not for tough losses to Navy and Minnesota. Just like last season, Indiana will be propelled in 2014 by one of the Big Ten’s top offenses. But will the defense be better?
As Year Three of the Tim Beckman era downs, a sense of urgency has set in around Champaign-Urbana. When will Beckman deliver a bowl?
The Big Ten has gone six years without a top-10 NFL draft pick. Think about that for a moment. As a point of reference, the SEC has had 23 top-10 picks in that span. We won’t even mention the Big Ten’s 2-7 Rose Bowl record and 27-47 bowl mark over the past decade. Oops. Why the struggles? This story tries to explain.
The Big Ten has altered divisions for 2014, going to an East-West format that is geography based after three seasons of the “competitive-balanced” Leaders and Legends Divisions. Each school will play the six other schools in their division, plus two cross-division foes. Not all cross-division foes are created equal, though, and I rank the draws in this post.
Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports
The dust hasn’t even settled on the 2014 NFL draft and some pundits already are looking ahead to the 2015 draft. Oh, brother. Needless to say, a lot can change between now and next May. But, take a gander at a few of the early, early, early 2015 mock drafts in this post.
One of the most stunning revelations of the NFL draft was the fact Michigan State had just one pick (CB Darqueze Dennard) off a 13-win team that won all nine Big Ten games by double-digits. This was one of the top squads in league annals!
The Big Ten had 30 players taken in the just completed NFL draft. But plenty of good players go undrafted every year and end up making NFL rosters and often having good careers. Some notables: Kurt Warner, Tony Romo, John Randle, Priest Holmes and Wes Welker.
The 2014 NFL draft is in the books. And, the Big Ten was well-represented. Things got off to a good start on Thursday during the first round, when the Big Ten had four picks.
The Big Ten had just one way to go after producing only one selection in the first round of last year’s NFL draft: up. Last night, the Big Ten had four picks, with Michigan OT Taylor Lewan leading the way at No. 11 to the Titans. Ohio State LB Ryan Shazier went No. 15 to Pittsburgh, followed by Michigan State CB Darqueze Dennard at No. 24 to Cincinnati and Ohio State CB Bradley Roby at No. 31 to Denver.
Last year, the Big Ten had one first-round pick. Things went better last night in what was a good first night at the NFL draft for the Big Ten with four selections. Ohio State led the way with two picks. The first Big Ten player off the board? Michigan offensive tackle Taylor Lewan. He also was the third OT tabbed, going No. 11 to Tennessee.
It has been a busy week, what with the announcements of a basketball series with the Big East and the hoop tourney moving to Washington, D.C., in 2017. Lots of mail on the subject of the Big Ten moving East. So, let’s dig in with some of your thoughts.
The Big Ten should be well-represented in tonight’s first round of the NFL draft. Colleague Sean Merriman pointed out in a recent piece for BTN.com that by almost every draft expert’s estimation, as many as five Big Ten players could hear their names called tonight.
Matthew O'Haren-USA TODAY Sports
I spent the past two days trying to keep up with Big Ten commish Jim Delany. He’s a man in motion, literally, grinding out a trip over the past two weeks that culminated with some big announcements.
Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports
NEW YORK — Jim Delany is a man on the move. Catch him if you can.
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
It’s NFL draft eve, people! It’s almost here … finally! Stock up on the Ro-Tel and chips. So, I would be remiss if I didn’t include at least ONE mock draft in today’s links, right? Right. This is a good one from CBSSports.com that combines draft experts.
WASHINGTON – Yesterday, it was New York. Today, it’s Washington. Welcome to the new Big Ten Eastern Wing. Soon after it was announced in 2012 that Rutgers and Maryland were joining the league, Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany pledged to build a bridge to the conference’s newcomers.
Now that the Gavitt Tipoff Series has been officially announced, it’s time to think of some of the fun potential matchups. Note: Nebraska-Creighton and Wisconsin-Marquette already play annually. And Butler meets Indiana and Purdue often. But here are 10 I’d like to see.
NEW YORK — Jim Delany’s sense of excitement was apparent in his voice when he spoke during breakfast this morning of the coming Big Ten-Big East basketball event that was just hours away from being announced but had been months in planning.
Last week, esteemed colleague Brent Yarina gave us a super-early look at the 2014-15 basketball season, picking an order of finish with three all-league teams. I’m gonna take a bit of a deeper dive into Brent’s early forecast. So, buckle up, and let’s take a ride into the future.
It’s that time of the week when I reach into my mailbag and answer your most-pressing questions. So, let’s begin with some basketball queries.
Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports