Thursday, March 27, 2014
Being Big Ten dictator for a day
By Adam Rittenberg
Thanks to Twitter follower @RevDJEsq for posing an interesting question to us: You're made dictator of the B1G with power to implement three changes. What are they?
Bennett weighed in during Wednesday's mailbag, outlining his three changes: no more 11 a.m. CT kickoffs; a 10-game conference schedule (!!) and a rotation for the Big Ten championship game.
I wanted to weigh in with my three changes, and then open the floor to you.
Me first ...
November night games at the Horseshoe and other Big Ten stadiums? Yes, please.
1. November night games: I've been beating the drum on this issue for years, and we should finally see a breakthrough either this year or next. The Big Ten misses out in a big way when its Saturdays in November are over by 7 p.m. ET. College football is increasingly becoming a prime-time sport, and every league should be gunning for the big national TV window at 8 p.m. ET. Every other conference plays night football in November, including ones that have cold-weather schools, such as the Big 12 and ACC. The Big Ten should have at least one prime-time game the first few Saturdays of November.
2. A Penn State-Nebraska permanent crossover: I never was a huge fan of the permanent crossovers for every team in the Legends/Leaders setup, and I like the Big Ten's emphasis on a strong schedule rotation with the expanded league and the nine-game league schedule (which I prefer to 10 games). But one game I'd like to see every year, if possible, is Nebraska-Penn State. Both fan bases really like the series, and although both teams have potential rivals in their divisions, there are limitations to series like Nebraska-Iowa and Penn State-Ohio State. There's history and commonality with these two programs, and it would be a great game for the Big Ten to feature annually.
3. Variety on bowl game dates: This is another change that should soon materialize as the Big Ten ushers in a new bowl lineup this season. The Big Ten previously has tried to own New Year's Day with the bowls, but many fans don't like having to flip between games. It's more effective to sprinkle in games before, during and after Jan. 1. New Year's Day isn't what it used to be, and fans would prefer to see each game on its own and enjoy the entire bowl window.
You've heard from me. Now I want to hear from you.
Same drill: You're the Big Ten dictator. You get to make three changes to the league.
They can be with scheduling, division alignment, bowls, branding and more.
Send me your responses here. Please be concise -- no more than 80 words per item -- and I'll post the best ones Friday or early next week.