In college football, there is the SEC and then there’s everyone else.
Still, this year was supposed to be the year that was going to show that the Big Ten was ready to step up and become one of the better conferences in the nation. Well, so much for that. After two weeks of play, the state of the conference is abysmal to say the least.
Let’s take a look at the lowlights so far. The Michigan Wolverines, one of the favorites in the conference have looked pedestrian at best, so far. After a 41-14 shellacking to the defending national champion Crimson Tide, the Wolverines barely fended off Air Force in the Michigan home opener.
Many of the big names in the conference have suffered defeats early in the season and some are already starting to hit the panic button. After a terrible offensive performance, losing to Oregon State 10 to 7, Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema made the decision Monday to fire offensive line coach Mike Markuson. Remember, this Badger team barely beat Northern Iowa in the home opener.
Well, it appears obvious that the two best teams in the conference are Michigan State and Ohio State. It’s a sad state of affairs, though, that the de facto Big Ten championship game may be placed on September 29th when the Buckeyes head to East Lansing, since the Buckeyes are not eligible to play in the actual Big Ten championship game
By process of elimination, the Spartans represent the Big Ten’s last hope for this season. So far, they’ve been able to live up to the hype. Quarterback Andrew Maxwell played well in the Spartans 41-7 victory over Central Michigan this past weekend. He still has a long way to go to make Michigan State fans forget about former quarterback Kirk Cousins, though. Running back Le’Veon Bell has done well for the Spartans, but Maxwell needs to keep making more plays to help take some of the pressure off the young back.
So there it is. The Big Ten, once again, boils down to only a few teams. It’s still early, but some of the so-called “powers” need to step up their games or this season could end up being an ugly one for the conference.