B1G Parity

Submitted by GoBlogSparty on November 29th, 2011 at 4:25 PM

It was a hell of a year in the B1G.

We added a new team and (ridiculously named) divisions.

We saw OSU lose to Purdue but beat Wisky.

Wisky loses to MSU and OSU while thrashing Nebraska

Nebraska pounds MSU but gets squashed by UM

UM loses to Iowa and MSU but destroys Nebraska

Iowa loses to PSU, gets trounced by MSU, and eeks out a win against UM

In the span of 1 year, we will be introducing 6 new coaches in a league of 12 (Michigan, Indiana, Minn, Illinois, PSU, OSU).

We saw scandals that will scar 2 of the conference's perennial powers.

(hate to say it) We saw the resurgence of Michigan certainly as a conference power, if not a national power just yet.

The longest tenured coaches in the B1G are now Ferentz, Bielema, and Dantonio.

Every week brings something new. Who knows what things will be like this time next year....but I'm def. excited for it.

How does everybody feel about the new B1G? Fast-forward to this time last year, I wouldn't have imagined half of the bullet points I named above.The only constant was that Indiana lost just about every week.

I, personally, am all in favor. There was a stretch of about 3-4 weeks when 4 different teams were in control of the Legends Division. The Leaders Division was not decided until the last week of the season.

I pose this question as an opposing fan. As UM fans would you guys prefer the days of "Big 2, Little 8" or do you like the way the conference is set up now with the additions of PSU, and Nebraska and the improvement of Wisc, Iowa, and MSU with the wildcards of NU, and Illinois tossed in?



November 29th, 2011 at 4:29 PM ^

I like some things but I really wish Ohio St was in our division to a point it blinds me to some of the other benefits. It really bothers me...

I do prefer parity though.


November 29th, 2011 at 5:40 PM ^

That wasn't necessarily a dig at MSU or Indiana, but I get tired of people complaining about us having a tougher conference schedule than MSU (MSU actually had the tougher schedule this year because of Wisconsin/Indiana vs. Purdue/Illinois). (1) It will even out or only be slightly in our favor over time and (2) people rip on Wisconsin for having an easy schedule year in and year out, but they don't stop to consider that the better schedule helps with rankings and picks later on.


November 29th, 2011 at 4:53 PM ^

I've wondered all year what the B1G's parity means with respect to the rest of college football.  Does B1G teams beating up on each other mean that all of the teams suck (read: all would lose to the good SEC teams)?  Or does it mean that its just a very competitve conference that was arranged extremely well (read: any one of the better B1G teams could go toe-to-toe with the nation's best)?  At this point, I'm still not sure what I think about the divisions and parity.

Zone Left

November 29th, 2011 at 9:59 PM ^

I think it's cyclic. OSU hammered the conference for basically a whole decade, had 3(?) national title appearances, and appeared in BCS bowls 8 of 9 years. To me, that's dominance, not parity.

This year, there just wasn't a really good Big 10 team.

Drew Sharp

November 29th, 2011 at 5:12 PM ^

I like parity to a certain extent.  It's not good if the conference is perceived as weak, which right or wrong, the B1G is.  It's good when there is a certain amount of pariy within the conference, but bad when those teams don't perform well out of conference.  The "experts" say the SEC is the best because it is so tough to win week-in-week-out.  But, when you think about it, the SEC is extremely top-heavy.  LSU, BAMA, and ARK are the best teams by far.  Then there is the next level if decent teams like S. Car, AUB, and GA (most years you can throw FLA in this group).  Occasionally FLA and ARK will flip tiers.  The rest are perrennial bottom feeders.  Vandy, MISS, MSU, and KY always are terrible, and TN has been for a little while now.  

I would like to see three/four top teams (MICH, OSU, WIS, NEB), then a solid middle tier (MSU, PSU, Iowa, ILL) and the bottom feeders (IU, MN, NW, Purdue),

So, a certain amount of parity is good, but I would rather the conference as a whole be strong.  


November 29th, 2011 at 6:20 PM ^

Has no business in that top group of yours. What have they done worth noting? Their only win over a team that's won over 7 games was home against SC and it's not like they gave LSU or Bama a game. When they lose that receiving core and Wilson they'll be back to mediocre.


November 29th, 2011 at 5:34 PM ^

I like parity between teams, but not divisions. I would rather play the other top 5 teams in the conference and go 3-2 than play 3 of the other top 5 with 2 bottom dwellers and go 4-1 or 5-0. I like big games. That's partially why I like LSU so much this year. Yes, they cheat within the rules, but they beat  3 probable BCS teams and face a 4th potential one on Saturday. If they lose on Saturday, there is still a good chance that they are #2, whereas, if they had played a normal OOC schedule, there is a good chance they drop out of the NCG.

In NCAA 12, I rearranged and paired conferences to have a 4-team playoff with conference championship games and then a bowl game. The top 8 teams and bottom 8 teams are in divisions in the same conference and the middle 16 are in the other conference. Every year, I will move the top 2 teams in the bottom 3 divisions up and the bottom 2 teams in the top 3 divisions down to keep the best teams playing each other.

I really wish we could do something like this so that next year Michigan, MSU, Nebraska, Wisconsin, PSU, and OSU Purdue (!?) would be all play each other and really decide who the best team is and there could be no argument (aside from 3-way ties, but in that case, they are all deserving). Then, when Purdue goes 0-5 in the division, MSU goes 1-4 (:P), OSU goes 5-0, and Iowa goes 4-1, they could swap out the teams and give everyone a shot in the upper division.


November 29th, 2011 at 6:41 PM ^

Does it bother anyone else that OSU and PSU brought a sort of black-eye upon the B1G?  I'm not saying we were perfect before that, but as a conference, the B1G no longer has the moral high ground on other conferences. 


November 29th, 2011 at 6:48 PM ^

Sparty, sadly, should have an arrow pointing to us, but we'll just call that artistic license.

@ the OP:  As one of the Big 2, I'd very selfishly prefer the days of the Big 2 and Little 8, but those days are likely gone forever.  Wisconsin's here to stay, Nebraska's going to be in the mix and - as much as it pains me to admit - Sparty is as well.  They've been a thorn in our side that we have to not let become a rusty saw blade.  (I would've thrown in Penn St. as another would-be perennial power, but suffice it to say that what's going on there is waaaaay beyond the realm of mere football)

Overall, though, the parity is good for the conference as a whole.  No denying that.  It's only good when we start representing better against other major conferences.  Otherwise parity just means 6 B1G teams getting waxed in bowl games instead of just 2. :p

The division names - Leaders and Legends - still blow monkey schlong.  On that, at least, every team's fans can agree.


November 29th, 2011 at 10:58 PM ^

Well since you asked, I like:

Biggest 1:   (us)

Big 4: OSU, Wisco, PSU, Neb

Parity 3 (one or two is always good): Iowa, MSU, Illinois

Little 4: NW, IU, Purdue, Minnesota



November 29th, 2011 at 11:19 PM ^

On second thought:

Purdue, Minnesota, and Indiana have 8 of the 13 B1G non-conference losses, which kills us in the computers for the BCS.  It wouldn't hurt if they were a little better.


All 13 B1G Losses:


Minnesota @ USC: 17-19

Penn State vs Alabama: 11-27

Purdue vs ND: 10-38

MSU @ ND: 13-31

Iowa @ Iowa State: 41-44 OT (Acceptable due to ISU's win over OK State)

Indiana vs Virginia: 31-34 *Suspect "acceptable loss"

OSU @ Miami: 6-24  *Suspect "acceptable loss"


Not Acceptable:

Minnesota vs New Mexico State: 21-28

Minnesota vs North Dakota State: 24-37

Indiana vs Ball State: 20-27

Indiana vs North Texas: 21-24

Purdue @ Rice: 22-24

Northwestern @ Army: 14-21 


We as a conference should not be losing those six games.  (Unless you're one of those wackos that roots for Non-AQ parity.)


This also is demonstrative of how in the computers, your conference is only as strong as your weakest few links, and it doesn't matter if you have "quality" non-conference wins by your stronger teams either this year or in recent bowl history.