ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Big Ten Needs to Shed its "Weak" Conference Perception

Updated on September 7, 2014

The Big 10 needs to Win. All of their Non-Conference games. Why? Because after watching several college football shows on ESPN, many of the experts such as ESPN's Kevin Carter, Jason Sehorn, and even a Big 10 Alumni Matt Millen, all agree that the national perception of the Big 10 is of a weak conference. The SEC and PAC-12 are strong, the ACC gets the benefit of the doubt due to having a big time program in Florida State, and oh by the way, they are the national champions. Wisconsin was dominating LSU 24-7 in the 3rd quarter of their Week 1 game, but LSU chipped away and finished with a 28-24 victory, giving the SEC a nice win. The Big 10 desperately needed that win, to improve their standing with the College Football Playoff committee. The Big 10 needs to not only win, but dominate these non conference games before going into Big 10 conference match-ups starting in Week 5.

The Big 10 must win now, before the College Football Playoffs slip away even though the season has just started.

Michigan State Spartan Coach Mark Dantonio
Michigan State Spartan Coach Mark Dantonio | Source

Michigan State Needs to Beat Oregon

The big game on slate that is being showcased and highlighted by both ESPN and Fox Sports is the biggest game of the year between 2 of the highest ranking teams, the blue-collar Michigan State Spartans against the high flying mighty Ducks of Oregon. This match-up pits an innovative offense against a dominating defense. While a loss this early on the road to a higher ranked team doesn't kill Michigan State's chances, it hurts the chances of weaker perceived teams such as Nebraska, Iowa, or Penn State. Michigan State can still make the College Football Playoff with just one loss, however, may be left out if the Spartans are in a tie-breaker situation. A blow out loss could doom the conference completely from the playoffs. Oregon is favored by 11 points.

Ohio State Buckeye QB Braxton Miller
Ohio State Buckeye QB Braxton Miller | Source

Ohio State's JT Barrett Needs to Grow Up Fast

The devastating injury to QB Braxton Miller not only dashed Ohio State's hope of making the College Football Playoff, but has also taken a dent into the Big 10's reputation. One of the criteria of the 13 member CFP committee is "Key Injuries", much like the NCAA basketball criteria. Ohio State is now weaker without its two time Big 10 offensive player of the year. The Big 10 has lost its most popular and dynamic player in Braxton Miller, also a preseason Heisman Trophy candidate for best college football player. JT Barrett, a redshirt freshman who will now lead the Buckeye offense, will need to ramp up as quickly as possible especially facing perennial power, the Virginia Tech Hokies in Week 2. OSU looked sluggish against Navy in Week 1, understandably so, with Barrett getting his first start.

Ohio State needs to continue to improve as they still have some goodwill with the committee in coach Urban Meyer, but if OSU struggles while winning, then they will start to bleed down the rankings. A win over Michigan State on November 8th in East Lansing will certainly put them into the Big 10 driver's seat and will boost their chances of a birth in the College Football Playoff especially if MSU can pull off an upset against Oregon.

Middle of the Pack Big 10 Teams Need to Emerge

Another way for the Big 10 to gain strength in perception is for middle tier teams to have some success and head into big games against Michigan State and Ohio State with undefeated records. Michigan can make a statement by beating its old and bitter rival Notre Dame in South Bend in Week 2. While both programs are not as powerful this year as in year's past, a Michigan blowout of the Fighting Irish will certainly be emphasized by the cable sports pundits and will have an impact on the CFP committee. Michigan will then carry that momentum and buzz into its final two non conference games.

Nebraska is a ranked team and if they can string together some wins and beat division rival Wisconsin, not only do they have a chance at winning their division, but the Big 10 title and an outside chance at the College Football Playoff. Unfortunately, Nebraska's strongest non conference game is against the University of Miami Hurricanes, who lost in a prime time last Monday night game against Louisville.

Iowa is another team that could make a difference. They play two respectable non conference games against interstate rival Iowa State from the Big 12, and Pittsburgh, now in the ACC. They will play ranked teams Wisconsin and Nebraska in the last 2 games of the season. If they somehow go undefeated into these games and respectively beat those 2 teams, then they will have a legitimate chance of making the CFP if they face and defeat a strong Michigan State team in the conference championship.

Source

Conclusion

During one of the panel discussions on a College Football show on ESPN, former Oregon Ducks coach and ESPN analyst Mike Bellotti believes that even though the Big 12 does not have a conference championship(the Big 12 only has 10 teams, and the NCAA requires that conferences have 12 teams to form 2 divisions and a conference championship), the Big 12 conference champion is in a good position to make the CFP as each Big 12 team plays the other 9 teams in the whole conference. Other conferences have up to 14 teams where they will not play against the whole conference. This gives the Big 12 an advantage for the playoff, but the conference champion needs to go undefeated in conference play as a 1 loss team without a conference title may not be enough to convince the committee for a coveted spot.

Because of their strong reputations and strengths, most of the ESPN analysts agree that the conference champions of the PAC-12 and the SEC will automatically make the College Football Playoff. If defending champion Florida State wins the ACC, they will have the benefit of the doubt even with a weak schedule. That leaves the Big 12 and Big 10, the perceived weakest conferences, to battle for that final spot.

With the weak perception of the Big 10 across the country, the best chances of the Big 10 to secure a spot in the college football playoff would be for either Michigan State or Ohio State to go undefeated or have only 1 loss. Both are ranked in the top 10 now, and can move up into the top 5 as wins start accumulating. One of them will drop off when they face each other in East Lansing on November 8th. Here are my picks for the College Football Playoff.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • muheebselfish profile image

      muheeb 

      4 years ago from pakistan

      Nice effort thanks

    • Sergio Balatan profile imageAUTHOR

      Sergio Balatan 

      4 years ago from Washington, DC

      Thanks!

    • muheebselfish profile image

      muheeb 

      4 years ago from pakistan

      REALLY GOOD EFFORT TRY TO DO WHEN MORE THANKS

    • muheebselfish profile image

      muheeb 

      4 years ago from pakistan

      REALLY GOOD EFFORT TRY TO DO WHEN MORE THANKS

    • Sergio Balatan profile imageAUTHOR

      Sergio Balatan 

      4 years ago from Washington, DC

      The Big 10 gets shut out in the night games. Michigan State loses to Oregon by 19 after leading by 9, Michigan gets shut out by Notre Dame, and Ohio State could block the VA Tech front 7 and lost at home 35-21. The Big 10 is weaker than expected.

    • Sergio Balatan profile imageAUTHOR

      Sergio Balatan 

      4 years ago from Washington, DC

      Week 2: Awful start to football Saturday for the Big 10. Purdue and Northwestern lose to MAC teams. Ouch. Nebraska barely beat McNeese St. Michigan State, Michigan and Ohio State need to win big tonight.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)