My question comes from one of the letters Brian answered in today's mailbag. Brian said Oregon's or Oklahoma's.
It's a good question for all of us, so what's yours?
For me, I'd say it's either Wisconsin's or the Air-Raid offense Mike Leach ran at Texas Tech. Let me explain:
1. Wisconsin. They play smashmouth, ram-it-down-your-throat, classic Big 10 football, which I always have and always will have a soft spot for. But unlike the stereotypical "3 yards and a cloud of dust" version, Wisconsin scores a lot of points and has a lot of big plays. How do they do it? Well, first of all, the dominate at the LoS with a crew of serious maulers. Unlike the Ron Dayne days, though, they back this up with tailbacks that are as elusive as they are tough. Montee Ball is the perfect example of this: he's 5-11, 210lbs and runs a 4.46 40-yard dash. Then there's Wisconsin's underrated passing game. Tolzein completed more than 70% of his passes in 2010, which means they got the yards almost every time they tried to. This year, with Russell Wilson, they look like they've seriously leveled up in that regard, and can also use the QB as a running threat as well. As good as LSU, Alabama and Oklahoma's defenses are, I don't think anyone can stop Wisconsin when they have the ball.
2. Leach-era Texas Tech. Just look at the numbers mediocre QBs behind mediocre lines put up against legit defenses. This **** works. And, in my humble opinion, it's very elegant. At the LoS, you simply line up more targets than the defense can account for, and use misdirection, fakes and complex blocking to get guys open as quickly as possible. This might not work as well in the Big 10 as in the Big 12, given the generally higher level of defensive play beyond the elite level, but I've liked it since the first time I saw it, and hope Coach Leach finds a good new home soon.