It’s that time of week where I reach into my latest mailbag. And, to no surprise, it’s stuffed with cards and letters about the new penalty for targeting a defenseless player. It’s not all about player safety, though, as there are questions regarding Indiana and Wisconsin. So, let’s get started.
Rick Osentoski-US PRESSWIRE
To help Big Ten fans get ready for the 2013 football season, BTN/BTN2Go will air the top 10 games of 2012, starting with No. 10 on Friday, Aug. 2, and finishing with No. 1 on Sunday, Aug. 11. All games will air at 8 p.m. ET.
Fresh off an appearance at the 42nd Big Ten Kickoff Luncheon on Thursday, Big Ten mascots are on the loose in Chicago. Our furry friends are still in town, because they’ll be all over Saturday’s Big Ten B1G 10K, which begins at 8 a.m. ET in front of the Adler Planetarium. The 5K begins at 9:15 a.m. ET.
If there was a darling at Big Ten media days, it was Northwestern. Expectations are at an all-time high in Evanston, where talk of winning the Big Ten is legit for a program that has eight starters back on offense and seven on defense from a 10-win squad that won the program’s first bowl game since the 1948 season.
This is a pivotal season for Iowa, which is coming off its worst year since 2000 as the Hawkeyes missed the postseason for the first time since 2007. Iowa hasn’t missed a bowl two seasons in a row since a three-year drought from 1998-2000. Kirk Ferentz made more coaching changes in the offseason, as he searches to steady a listing ship.
Saturday’s Big Ten B1G 10K isn’t the only organized run this weekend. There’s also the second annual Run for Walk, a 4.1 mile trek through Evanston’s tree-line streets and lakefront, Sunday morning (7:30 a.m. CT). The event is in honor of former Northwestern coach Randy Walker, who died of a heart attack in the summer of 2006.
With media days complete, there is a long list of stories to check out. Here is a nice run down to get you caught up on each team from the goings-on in Chicago the last two days. By the way: The season begins Aug. 29, with Indiana State playing at Indiana.