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Way-too-early '12 Big Ten OPOY candidates

Now that the deadline to declare for the 2012 NFL Draft has passed, it’s a lot easier to analyze what could be in store for the Big Ten next season. This is far too early, admittedly, but you can find my list of the top candidates for the 2012 Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year in this post. Disagree? Did I leave someone off the list? Leave your thoughts in the comment box, or tweet @BTNBrentYarina.

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Big Ten well represented in Super Bowl XLVI

As many as 20 Big Ten products will participate in Super Bowl XLVI on Feb. 5, headlined by New England QB Tom Brady (Michigan), a three-time Super Bowl winner and two-time Super Bowl MVP. Brady is the biggest name, by far, but it’s the New York Giants who have the most Big Ten players (14 players to six). See all the Big Ten products in the Super Bowl in this post.

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Wisconsin's Ball receives Silver Football

During an early break in the Northwestern-Wisconsin men’s basketball game Wednesday night, Teddy Greenstein, of the Chicago Tribune, presented Badgers star running back and Heisman Trophy finalist Montee Ball with the Silver Football, awarded annually to the Big Ten’s MVP. Ball is the eighth Badger to win the prestigious award, voted on by the league’s coaches, and the first since Ron Dayne (1999). The junior running back totaled 2,229 yards, including a nation’s best 1,923 on the ground, and a Big Ten record 39 touchdowns. Watch the entire presentation now.

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Dienhart: 5 Jump Early to NFL Draft

College football players had until Jan. 15 to declare for the NFL Draft, which begins Thursday, April 26 and continues through Saturday, April 28 (get more info at NFL.com). The Big Ten saw five players (Illinois’ Whitney Mercilus, Iowa’s Riley Reiff, Michigan State’s Jerel Worthy and Edwin Baker and Wisconsin’s Peter Konz) opt for the pros, so here’s my quick look at each one along with some handy links.

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Badgers tab Canada to run offense

(UWBadgers.com) – Wisconsin head coach Bret Bielema took another step toward completing his coaching staff by naming Matt Canada as the Badgers’ offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach on Tuesday. Canada spent last season in the same role at Northern Illinois, helping the Huskies to an 11-3 record, a MAC championship and a victory in the GoDaddy.com Bowl.

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