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One look back at Big Ten's best BCS era teams

The BCS era is over, and to me that is a very good thing. The era ran 16 seasons stretching from 1998-2013. As a way to celebrate the end of the BCS and with an eye on the first college football playoff after next season, I present to you my 10 best Big Ten teams of the BCS era. Agree? Disagree? State your case in the comments section below or drop me a note for my mailbag. And if you want a sneak peek at 2014 preseason rankings, I wrote about one I found a little while ago, but it’s

B1G Clicks: Tracking today's Big Ten trends

Did you miss something while you stepped away from your computer? We’re tracking some of the best Big Ten social media happenings and posting them all right here. Check out today’s edition, including a Nebraska football helmet poking fun at the Texas logo. Like what you see? We do this every weekday. Visit our Clicks archive. Here are Thursday’s B1G Clicks: New addition to the helmet for the game #hornsdown pic.twitter.com/dM3yGewxVL — Jeremiah Sirles (@Sirles71_HSKR) January 16, 2014 Our take: Think Nebraska has completely forgotten about those Big 12 rivalries? 2018 on an island? I guess I can say …..

Dienhart: A look at Big Ten early enrollees

National Signing Day is Feb. 5th, but schools have been inking mid-year prospects for a few weeks in the early-signing period. And today is the deadline. The Big Ten will welcome 51 newcomers, who all are enrolled and able to go through winter conditioning and spring ball. Illinois leads the way with nine mid-year enrollees. Michigan and Ohio State each have brought in seven. Indiana has six, while Penn State and Wisconsin have five. Iowa and Northwestern have the fewest mid-year additions with just one each. Among the newcomers are 10 junior college transfers. Illinois leads the way with four

Ameer Abdullah returning for senior season

Following a memorable 24-19 win over Georgia in the Gator Bowl, Nebraska’s football program got some great news today. The Huskers’ talented running back Ameer Abdullah has announced that he will return for his senior season in 2014. The 1,600-yard rusher had the following to say in a statement released by the team Thursday. [ MORE: Huskers.com: Abdullah to return to Huskers in 2014 ] “While it may be true that none of my siblings were presented with the possibility of playing professional sports, it is equally true that the average NFL career, because of the violent nature of the

Daily links: 10 Big Ten stories to know Thursday

This just in on the Penn State coaching search: San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman reportedly interviewed for the post on Monday. Wow, he’s a busy guy, as the 49ers have a playoff game at Carolina this weekend. So, if you are keeping track, James Franklin, Mike Munchak and Larry Johnson are in the mix. Oh, and it looks like Franklin has an offer on the table. This thing may end soon. Very soon. *** The big news that hit yesterday was the firing of Michigan offensive coordinator Al Borges. But, really, it wasn’t news. I think we all

How much is your Big Ten football team worth? A lot!

How much is your Big Ten football team worth? Thanks to a recent study by Ryan Brewer, an assistant professor of finance at Indiana University-Purdue University Columbus, we have an idea. Let’s state the obvious: every Big Ten program is worth a lot. But, Michigan ($688.5 million) and Ohio State ($674.8) lead the Big Ten and only trail Texas ($875) and Notre Dame ($811.5). Editor’s note: In the first version of this story, we incorrectly used last year’s study and numbers. The error has been fixed. [ MORE: View the total value of top college football teams ] According to

Why each B1G team should feel good about 2014

It’s not too early to start thinking about the 2014 season, right? Right. Others already are in on the action, with super-early top 25 polls. So, here’s why you should be excited about your team’s prospects for next season. Smiles, everyone! [ MORE: View the final 2013 college football polls ] ILLINOIS Fans are jacked out of their mind to see Oklahoma State transfer quarterback Wes Lunt, who could take this improving offense to another level. Don’t forget about Aaron Bailey, too. RB Josh Ferguson is a special jack-of-all-trades. All of the young talent on defense that took its bumps

Twitter: Bo Pelini tweets at his faux account, @FauxPelini

Bo Pelini has surprised us a couple of times in the last year. It all started with Nebraska’s Harlem Shake video, and then there was the cell phone prank he played on his team. Neither compares to what the coach did during Monday night’s BCS title game. It’s true, Pelini tweeted at his popular faux Twitter account (@FauxPelini), asking for his faux cat back, the one featured in the account’s avatar. Check out the entertaining exchange below: @FauxPelini ok enough is enough… I want my cat back. You've had her long enough! — Bo Pelini (@BoPelini) January 7, 2014 Shocked

Dienhart: My best of 2013-14 Big Ten bowls

The dust has settled on another disappointing postseason for the Big Ten, which went 2-5 in bowl games. The lone victors: Michigan State in the Rose Bowl and Nebraska in the Gator Bowl. Still, there were many noteworthy things. Here’s my Best of the Big Ten Bowls. [ MORE: View our full 2013-14 bowl schedule ] Best game: The Orange Bowl was off-the-charts spectacular. Clemson’s 40-35 win over Ohio State featured four lead changes, over 1,000 combined yards and enough electricity to light the BTN offices in downtown Chicago. The game lived up to its hype as a quarterback-fueled shootout.

Merriman: My top 10 B1G bowl performances

Big Ten bowl season is officially in the books as Ohio State closed out the conference postseason with a 40-35 loss to Clemson in Friday night’s Discover Orange Bowl. While it wasn’t a great showing for the Big Ten, going 2-5 in conference bowl games, there were still plenty of outstanding individual performances this year. Without further ado, here are my top-10 Big Ten bowl performances. [ MORE: How did we do? View 2013-14 Big Ten bowl game predictions ] 10. Anthony Hitchens, LB, Iowa Outback Bowl stats: 10 tackles, 1 tackle for loss Hitchens was outstanding for the Hawkeyes