Forget about this expansion chatter. The moment you've been waiting for has arrived, as ESPN today announced six football matchups involving Big Ten teams for the 2010 season.
Without further ado, here are the game times and TV plans (not all are night games):
Sept. 11: Miami at Ohio State, ESPN, 3:40 p.m. ET
Sept. 18: Notre Dame at Michigan State, ABC, 8 p.m. ET
Oct. 2: Penn State at Iowa, ABC or ESPN or ESPN2, 8 p.m. ET
Oct. 16: Ohio State at Wisconsin, ESPN or ESPN2, 7:15 p.m. ET
Oct. 30: Ohio State at Minnesota, ABC or ESPN or ESPN2, 8 p.m. ET
Oct. 30: Michigan at Penn State, ABC or ESPN or ESPN2, 8 p.m. ET
Also, the Big Ten Network announced several primetime matchups.
Sept. 2: Marshall at Ohio State, 7:30 p.m. ET
Sept. 25: Northern Illinois at Minnesota, 8:30 p.m. ET
Oct. 9: Purdue at Northwestern, 7:30 p.m. ET
It's no surprise Ohio State will get top billing as it makes a push for the national championship. I'm glad to see Penn State-Iowa at night, as last year's game in Happy Valley had an electric atmosphere and Kinnick Stadium is a great setting for night football. Penn State, of course, will get to host a game under the lights as Michigan visits on Oct. 30.
Minnesota has one of the nation's most attractive home schedules, as USC, Ohio State, Penn State and Iowa visit TCF Bank Stadium. The Gophers play two home night games.
Oct. 9: Purdue at Northwestern, Big Ten Network, 7:30 p.m. ET