Sports department for the student run radio station 90.3 WRST at UW-Oshkosh
Here we go again? The Big Ten could be getting bigger, and bigger and bigger and…Ok, maybe that’s a bit far-fetched; however, with the superconference coming to college football, it’s all about who can make the right moves at the right time. We’re all familiar with Maryland and Rutgers joining the conference in 2014, that’s a done deal. However, the rumor wheel has been spinning of late with the talk of who could be next.
Multiple sources, including the Minneapolis Star Tribune along with Jeff Ermann of InsideMDSports.com have discussed the possibility of Virginia, North Carolina and Georgia Tech being the next targets of the Big Ten.
Now, it’s important to understand that these are VERY preliminary rumors. Just because there’s interest, doesn’t mean that tomorrow the Big Ten will be a 17-team behemoth that makes all other conferences tremble in terror. That being said, let’s take a look at what each team brings to the table football-wise since that’s the driving force behind realignment.
Easy answer is: not much. Here are the combined records for each team over the last five seasons.
Overall Record: 24-37
Bowl appearances: 1
Overall Record: 39-25
Bowl Appearances: 4
**It’s important to note that UNC is currently serving three years of probation for violations under former coach Butch Davis
Overall Record: 41-26
Bowl Appearances: 5 (Including an Orange Bowl loss to Iowa following the 2009 season)
As you can see, Georgia Tech and UNC have better overall records than Virginia, but are nothing to write home about. In reality, Carolina seems destined to tally an 8-5 record in almost every season of late. Georgia Tech also has had its share of 6-6 (or worse) seasons, save for the 2009 ACC Championship & Orange Bowl berth. As for Virginia…well…yeah…they have a football program still. I guess that’s going for them. Remember this guy named Matt Schaub? How about Chris Long? (Seems like those guys played there ages ago, eh?).
As with all realignment in College Football, the money is the motive. With more schools in the conference, revenue shares get higher for the conference as a whole and the schools. Plus, the Big Ten Network gains a bigger audience with another Washington D.C. area school (Virginia) and expansive TV markets in Atlanta and the Research Triangle (Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill). (Speaking of research, there’s this thing called “Academics” that plays a role too. Who woulda’ thought?)
In the end, the possibility of expansion has its pros and cons. If College Football is truly going to move to a “superconference” layout, the time to move is now to secure a bright future. While these moves are not really “great” for football, neither is the addition of Maryland. Lest we remind you Nebraska (aka “Nebrasketball”) wasn’t the most exciting entry for the hoops universe, either. Adding UNC/GT/UVA for basketball is another story, and something I’ll save for our basketball writers. Although I don’t necessarily care for the Tar Heels, can you imagine UNC’s hoops tradition moving into the Big Ten?
The football realignment carousel continues to move, question is, when it will stop? (If it does at all).
World of Sports
What are your thoughts on the Big Ten’s recruiting classes? In future posts, we’ll take a look at some of the key players and top classes of the conference (and of course, we’ll spend some time focusing on the Wisconsin Badgers, as well). Rivals.com ranks the Badgers’ class 11th in the Big Ten, only ahead of Minnesota. Do you agree with this ranking? How do you think new head coach Gary Anderson will fare in his first season in Mad-Town?
Oh, speaking of recruiting, this happened.
I’ll let you make your own conclusions about that and how the recruiting process is becoming totally ridiculous. In the meantime, I’m happy to announce that my sister, who’s a 4th grader, has committed to play basketball for Geno Auriemma at UConn! (Only very extremely kidding…)
Until next week, Love it or Leave It!
Spencer Wagen-WRST-FM Station Manager and Sports Broadcaster