After browsing thru the Deinhart prediction thread, I think there is something worth pointing out. I know everyone knows we have 2 divisions now, but I think it is going to take time for people to understand we no longer have to have a better record than OSU and Wis to win the Big Ten.
We need to understand that we are in essentially a 6 team conference. I have been "Captain Optimism" about 2011 for 2 years now and I will consider Hoke's 1st year a pretty big downer if we are not playing a rematch against OSU in the BTC Game. Consider "our" conference next year.
Nebraska is welcomed to the Big Ten with a pretty brutal schedule next year and we play them at home. MSU also has a brutal early schedule. The other upper tier team in our conference is Iowa who I think is going to be in for some hard times this year. They lose a ton and have to break in a new qb, they are not a "reloading" type team. They get a break on the schedule, but I still don't see them as very good next year.
This thing is wide open for us. I think our side of the divisions will submit a team with 2 losses in conference and probably use a tiebreaker, but it is wide open. We can win this conference next year.
Just remember that in the back of your head when you start thinking about our prospects for next year.