That’s more like what Iowa fans were thinking when the men’s basketball team hired Fran McCaffery to replace Todd Lickliter. After a disappointing 11-20 first season under the former Siena coach, Iowa surprised many with its 18-17 encore — a season highlighted by upset victories over ranked Wisconsin, twice, then-No. 13 Michigan and then-No. 18 Indiana on its way to capturing an NIT berth. It might not sound like much, but this is a program that went 38-58 since 2007-08 and hadn’t sniffed the postseason. And now, it’s thinking bigger things. Like the NCAA tourney.
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Like many of us, Big Ten products are all over Twitter. They let us into their lives and put their personalities on display in 140 characters or less, and they often delight and enlighten in the process. Our goal is to present these tweets to our Big Ten fans, whether they’re on Twitter or not. See some of our favorite Big Ten-centric tweets from Tuesday in this post.
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For any good offense, it all begins up front. It’s not an oversimplification to say the teams with the best offenses typically feature the best lines. Knowing that, Michigan State and Wisconsin have to be happy entering the 2012 college football season. I like the Spartans and Badgers’ front lines, to the point where they rank 1-2 in my Big Ten offensive line unit rankings. Where does your school’s line rank? See the entire list in this post. Also, check out all of my 2012 unit rankings.
Who doesn’t like a pair of Air Jordan’s? One former Big Ten football player is such a fan, the shoe makes up his birthday cake. Ex-Hawkeye Tyler Sash may have celebrated his birthday late last month, but we’re just now seeing his birthday cake, thanks to a tweet from NFL teammate and former Buckeye Jake Ballard (@NYG_J_Ballard85). See the cake in this post.
Yesterday, BTN.com senior writer Tom Dienhart and BTN.com web editor Brent Yarina hit email to debate the 2012 Big Ten scoring leader, the first in a series of Big Ten statistical predictions. Up next: Passing yards. Who will lead the Big Ten in 2012? See Tom and Brent’s email thread in this post.
It’s a building process. Minnesota offensive coordinator Matt Limegrover knows that. He’s been through this before with Golden Gopher head coach Jerry Kill at Northern Illinois, Southern Illinois and Emporia State, where he joined Kill in 1999 and hasn’t left. Limegrover became offensive coordinator in 2001, when Kill and his staff took over at Southern Illinois. I caught up with Limegrover to talk about his offense and how it’s developing as he heads in Year Two with the Golden Gophers.
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The college football world was abuzz with analysis and opinion about the Big Ten’s stance on a playoff, which the conference discussed during a conference call on Monday.