Sunday, September 7, 2014
The Big Ten, Little 14, Looked Bad Saturday
Yesterday was not a good day for the Big Ten, also known as the Big. The Big Ten once had ten teams, then added Penn State to become 11. It was still the Big Ten. Nebraska joined for 12, but still the Big Ten. Maryland and Rutgers just entered the Big Ten, and under the new math 14=10, although the Big Ten sometimes calls itself The “Big.” Less is not more. You have to play big in football to be Big. Thank God for Maryland and Rutgers, The new members, thought to be patsies, at least know how to win in the creampuff pre-season. Michigan, Michigan State, and Ohio State strayed from the script; they played established teams, and lost. Northwestern and Purdue also lost, to MAC teams, Northern Illinois and Central Michigan respectively. Nebraska, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, and Penn State were unimpressive in barely winning. Nebraska, Penn State, and Wisconsin traditionally play creampuffs, so little can be discerned from their victories, unless they’re ugly. The Big was 8-5 yesterday, but none of its teams look like they want to compete in the Big Championship game, much less in Dallas for the national title. Michigan State held on for a half in Eugene against Oregon, but the Neon Day Glo Ducks then, as so often in the past, suddenly turned it up a notch, 46-27. The Spartans were as valiant as they were at Thermopylae 2,493 years ago. Michigan left its defensive line, injured defensive backs, kicking game, and offense at home. Notre Dame shut them out for the first time in 42 games, 31-0. The Wolverines were better than the score for a quarter. No chicken dance after this game. The Ohio State University Buckeyes lost at home to Virginia Tech 35-21. The Buckeye’s great QB, Braxton Miller, is out for the season, but Ohio State, as in 8 years ago against Florida for the national title, was unable to contain the Hokies’ quick defensive ends. Urban Meyer was the winning coach 8 years ago and the losing coach yesterday. What goes around comes around. How does it feel? Michigan, Michigan State, and Ohio State can still run the string. It won’t be Michigan, and probably not Ohio States. Mark D’Antonio’s job is secure at MSU, as it Urban Meyer’s at OSU. Not so Brady Hoke at Michigan. Fortunately, the Wolverines, Spartans and Buckeyes are basketball powers. The Big is fast becoming a basketball conference. We can’t wait for December to come. The Nebraska Cornhuskers claim to fame this weekend is that they are treating an Ebola patient.