Big 10 expansion option

Submitted by [email protected] on October 3rd, 2010 at 12:13 AM

If the "Big 10" conference was considering candidates for further expansion, what other universities would hot prospects?

1) Notre Dame - a perennial favorite as the third university in Indiana and home of Touchdown Jesus.  - the only problems are its TV contract with NBC, their independent national schedule, and the fact they may only join if they are force to do so to get a BCS bid without an undefeated season.

2)  Boise State - mentioned by Kirk Firenze of Iowa as a good team to add to the Big 10 for football - they would provide another top 10 BCS poll team to the conference add to competition.  Problems - would they fit into the big 10 for other sports; will their football team remain prominent or will they dwindle in a few years after these classes graduate and the coach leaves?  How many other sports could they compete with other Big 10 teams?  Would they be able to handle the Big 10 schedule compared to the Mountain West schedule of lowly teams?  Would travel distances be a problem?  Do they have a decent airport in the winter that is accessable?  Do they have a decent hockey team?

3) Missouri - previously was a center of speculation this summer, but openly denied any interest in switching from the Big 12 to the Big 10 after Nebraska jumped this year. 

4) others?

It would seem Notre Dame would be a no-brainer, but adding just one team might be problematic for the two division organization - so adding at least an even number of teams would make easier for schedule making.



October 3rd, 2010 at 9:35 AM ^

I don't think Just Notre Dame would end it. If Notre Dame does come Your going to have bring A couple east coast teams on another west team to even it out SO Notre Dame, bosie st./ Rutgers/ Pitt  Or Rutgers/ Cinncy Notre Dame Mizzou. I Think 16 would better then 12 but what if Texas wants to come??? Questions?? Questions?


October 3rd, 2010 at 12:21 AM ^

Boise State?  Really?  Ferentz couldn't have been serious about that.  BSU makes no sense on any level.  They aren't big enough, close enough, good enough academically, competitive enough in other sports, don't have enough history, etc.

Not that this topic is all that relevant for a gameday and we've talked about it ad nauseum during the offseason , but I'd say Pitt, Missouri, Maryland, BC, or Rutgers would be the obvious candidates.

[email protected]

October 3rd, 2010 at 1:41 AM ^

Just FYI - here is the Boise State University Bronco's helmet


The other winged helmet is worn by the Delaware Blue Hens, not Delaware State:

Princeton had the winged helmet first in 1935 when Fritz Crisler was there, but stopped using it in 1938, when Crisler left to go to Michigan, where Fritz Crisler began the Michigan tradition of the blue and maize winged helmet.  Princeton started using the winged helmet again in 1998, see below :

the original Princeton helmet:

the current Princeton helmet:


See the wikipedia article on the winged helmet for the gory details:


October 3rd, 2010 at 12:42 AM ^

Here's a question:  Has anyone ever been "kicked out" of a conference?  How hard would it be to (hypothetically) do?  I'm not saying I want to kick Minny or Indiana out of the Big Ten, but what's the precedent?

[email protected]

October 3rd, 2010 at 1:07 AM ^

University of Chicago was a charter member of the Big 10 in 1896, and left the Big 10 in 1946.  Michigan State University joined the Big 10 a few years later in 1950 to make up for Chicago absence.  University of Chicago left the Big 10 after they decided to  de-emphasize varsity athletics after WWII.  So, no more football or basketball varsity teams at all.  

Ironically, Enrico Fermi's original nuclear reactor to produce plutonium was built underneath the football field at  Alonzo Stagg Field stadium in 1942, which was the first artificial nuclear reactor, and kicked off the Manhattan project.


October 3rd, 2010 at 1:10 AM ^

Pre 1995 (when Northwestern won an outright Big 10 title), it had been rumored for a couple years that the Big 10 was considering kicking out Northwestern as a subsequent move to adding PSU, thus returning the Big 10 to ten teams.

A long history of being miserable at sports, and being the only private school in the Big 10 were major reasons that this was considered.  After winning the Big 10 in 1995 and 1996 though, their first Big 10 football Championship since 1936, the Big 10 changed their minds.


October 3rd, 2010 at 12:53 AM ^

I don't know the context for Ferentz's comments, but I don't interpret what I read here as him suggesting that BSU would make a good addition.


"Ferentz said he didn't know how Boise State would fare in a Big 10 schedule, but he thinks well."

To me, that seems in reference to their poor strength of schedule and the guesses from everyone under the sun on how they would fare in a BCS conference, not that they would make a good addition to the Big Ten.

[email protected]

October 3rd, 2010 at 12:56 AM ^

After seeing the replies, who thought I had mistaken Coach Ferentz's first name, but after checking, I find I was correct;


which confirms Kirk Ferentz is the coach for the Iowa Hawkeyes, not Kurt Ferentz.

Oh, btw, here is a youtube video of Kirk Ferentz discussing Boise State earlier this year:

Kirk Ferentz discusses Boise State

I stand by my original post above.


October 3rd, 2010 at 9:54 AM ^

I don't know the context of the quote either, but that quote looks more like it's about whether or not Boise should play in the title game, because of the weakness of their conference schedule. Sports media is always asking coaches how BSU would do if they had to play in one of the BCS conferences, especially since Saban indirectly said that he didn't think they (BSU) could handle an SEC schedule.

FWIW, I think that SEC folks don't think anyone can handle an SEC schedule...

As several folks have noted, BSU doesn't even come remotely close to matching from the basis of academics, grad programs, research dollars, etc. They're actually closer (in terms of academics) to a MAC school...not that there's anything wrong with that...

Okay, done being vote is for the a life-long Browns fan, I think that seeing them eventually compete for a championship would be sweet...


October 3rd, 2010 at 1:24 AM ^

and Florida State just beat Cal for the Big Ten Championship after receiving the bid for the NFC by owning the tiebreaker over the Toronto Blue Jays.

On a side note, the game was held at Wimbledon for the second consecutive year.


October 3rd, 2010 at 9:55 AM ^

I thought they were going to say add this Indiana team they saw yesterday. Having known that only crappy teams like Purdue and Notre Dame come from the state of Indiana, watching a NCAA Division 1-AA upstart give Michigan a fight like that was inspiring.

Then after the first comment telling him that Indiana is already in the Big Ten and has been for years, that the OP's monocle pop right off his eye.


October 3rd, 2010 at 10:49 AM ^

While I enjoy all the expansion talk (I think we'll end up with ND and Texas personally), I think the more interesting question is who will play QB this season?? Denard is explosive, but he can't pass!! Tate is erractic at times and doesn't work hard. Might he transfer to San Diego State if he gets beat out?? What about Gardner?? Will he redshirt or play? People say he could be the next Vince Young!


Wait...what's that you say? It's October 3rd? I've been sleeping since May 3rd? Oh...nevermind all that then.


October 3rd, 2010 at 11:25 AM ^

then we HAVE to take idaho too. think of the great rivalry game that would bring the Big10! i think penn state could have a pretty natural rivalry with the vandals to. plus, idaho plays in the equivalent of oosterbaan but crappier. how cool is that?!


October 3rd, 2010 at 3:40 PM ^

Wait, we added Nebraska to the Big10?  I've been telling people this whole time it was Rutgers that narrowly beat out Texas.  I was glad it was Rutgers too because it gives the BTN access to the NYC market, which we all know is much bigger for college football than anything Texas could provide.  But Nebraska? Come on.  I checked mlive and they didn't even have a football program before 1993. 


October 3rd, 2010 at 7:54 PM ^

Every time someone mentions Rutgers and the NYC market in the same sentence, CMR dies a little inside... That's kind of like saying that Western in the Big Ten conference expands the Detroit market. We already have a large share in the NYC market, there's a lot of UM alumni there.