The biggest difference between the SEC and Big Ten isn’t speed at the skill-positions on offense. Nope. It’s on defense—along the line, in particular. The Big Ten has some big fellas who can make plays and get up the field—just not the depth and breadth of the SEC. But, the situation is improving. Here is my ranking of the Big Ten defensive lines.
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It all begins up front. Ask any coach. Without good blockers, skill talent is diminished—and offenses flounder. The Big Ten has some potentially strong blocking units, which has hopes high in several precincts. Here’s my ranking of the Big Ten offensive lines, starting with two of the conference’s biggest powerhouse programs.
When you think of Nebraska, you don’t typically think of receivers. You think ground-pounding offenses that play physical football behind big lines and star running backs. Well, this year’s edition of the Cornhuskers has some very good receivers. In fact, it’s the best collection in the Big Ten. Here’s my ranking of the Big Ten receiving units.
We’ve reached the championship of the 2013 Big Ten helmet bracket, and based on the matchup, either BTN.com readers are bigger fans of Indiana’s helmet than others or Michigan fans stuffed the ballot box to create a favorable pairing. Either way, BTN.com readers have spoken, and it’s between Legends Division champ Michigan and Leaders Division champ Indiana. See all the tourney’s results and vote for your 2013 champion in this post. Voting ends June 5.
The Big Ten makes up 25 percent of the 2013 Women’s College World Series field. And to get Michigan and Nebraska fans ready for the WCWS, starting Thursday afternoon, BTN/BTN2Go will re-air two games tonight from this season featuring the two Big Ten teams playing each other.
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The Big Ten lost its top two rushers in Michigan State’s Le’Veon Bell and Wisconsin’s Montee Ball. And Nebraska standout Rex Burkhead also is gone. But most of the conference’s other top running backs are back. Here is how I rank the Big Ten running back units, and it’s my latest look at how the various football teams units stack up by position. Read the others right here. Agree? Disagree? Tell me in the comments below, email me about here, or track me down on Twitter (@BTNTomDienhart).