The Ol' Ball Coach's hating game is in midseason form. In this SI article he claims playing East Carolina is more challenging than picking up a bottom tier Big Ten team.
The Big Five conferences all playing each other, I don't think that makes a lot of sense, really,” Spurrier said, via garnetandblackattack.com. “Playing East Carolina is a lot tougher game than maybe picking up one of those bottom Big Ten teams, and a lot of fans around here would rather see a team that's close by."
Sounds kind of crazy at first, until you actually look at the rankings and see that (according to Jeff Sagarin anyways) East Carolina finished no. 56, while the bottom of the Big Ten finished no. 76 (Illinois), no. 100 (Rutgers), and no. 157 (Purdue).
Maybe the Big Ten should have gone for that Raleigh and southern market and picked up East Carolina instead.