Part of the fun of being a part of the Big Ten Bloggers community has been the roundtables. Someone posts a set of questions, everyone answers them on their own blog and then the original question asker gets to round up the answers in a wrap up post. I have never stepped up to host a roundtable until this one. Usually this exercise contains more pertinent and valuable information but this one is more for entertainment value than depth chart analysis.
The Rivalry Round winner of absolute MUST READ was the Only Game That Matters (link below). I strongly encourage you to read.
Participating blogs (I hope I didn't miss any)...
- Only Game That Matters (B10) - Great interview with Alex Trebec (who can't stand that fruity Ken Jennings)
- Meet Me at Kinnick (Iowa) - needs to work through his angst over Illini fans
- Varsity Blue (Mich) - spewing some hate on Michigan State
- Michigan Sports Center (Mich) - still yearns for Terrell Pryor
- Enlightened Spartan (MSU) - total dislike for Michigan plus a bonus Spaceballs reference
- Lake the Posts (NU) - would love to beat OSU (just once!)
- Buckeye Battle Cry - renames Penn State as "Third-Placers, unless Wisconsin is having a good year"
- Happy Hour Valley (PSU) - thumbs up for Arrested Development reference, thumbs down for Harold and Kumar reference
- Black Shoes Diaries (PSU) - nobody in B10 would add talent to Penn State
- Nittany Line (PSU) - huge fans of the Land Grant Trophy
- Boiled Sports (Pur) - surprisingly not a fan of the University of Indiana People from Indiana
- Off the Tracks (Pur) - enjoying the fact that Navy has a 1-game win streak over Notre Dame
1. ESPN's Adam Rittenberg recently ranked the top 5 rivalries in the Big Ten and there were some controversial results (Illinois v Ohio State as #3?). Clearly Ohio State vs. Michigan is the #1 rivalry in the Big Ten, but give me your next three. Your school does not have to be included in this list, but regardless of who you choose defend your picks.
After the obvious Michigan vs. Ohio State rivalry there were two more that stood out. In no particular order...2. Obviously winning every game is important and beating really good teams sends a stronger message than beating Minnesota. Assume every team is .500 this year and the outcome of your next two games means nothing outside of pride and a year's worth of bragging rights. Give me the two schools you would want to beat (in order) and why. What makes beating School's A and B significant?
Minnesota vs. Wisconsin - many appreciated this one because of it's longevity and the fact that the teams are playing for the fiercest traveling trophy in the country. Who else gets to play for a giant axe and then how many coaches let their players run around the field with it. Considering I was the only blogger participating who roots for either team it is impressive it received as many votes as it did.
Michigan vs. Michigan State - obviously received much attention from the Michigan and MSU blogs. But this rivalry was recognized by others as well as a fierce rivalry that has implications beyond the game itself.
Others mentioned were Pur/Ind, OSU/PSU, Minn/Iowa and Ill/NU
While it did not receive many votes much attention was paid to the uniquely designed Land Grant Trophy given to the winner of Penn St / Michigan St. It is a modern engineering marvel and dearly treasured by fans of both teams.
Ohio State was a rather popular choice. Not because the likes of NU, PSU, Mich, etc wanted to beat the best, but rather they just want to actually BEAT them. PSU and NU in particular come to mind because they just can't seem to beat the Buckeyes (ever).3. Take the two teams from above that you claim are your biggest rivals and give me a new mascot for them.
Some classics include...4. There are some new rules in college football this year. My favorite is the Big Ten experimental rule which states that after every win this year you get to pluck one player off their roster and bring them back to your campus. Looking at your schedule give me two players you would pluck (assuming a win), why you would take them and what would you do with them?
Illinois = Chief Bandwagoners
Michigan = GOB (from Arrested Development)
Ohio State = Sweater Vests
Michigan State = Failures
Ohio State = Convicts
Illinois = Illanoy Fighting Zookers
Minnesota = The Long Forgottens
Michigan = Cobra Kai
Indiana = Indiana University People from Indiana (my personal favorite)
Michigan = Yellow Bellies
Indiana = "a hillbilly with the sense kicked out of him"
Michigan = Tressel's Bitches
The BIG winner here was James Laurinaitis. Almost a unanimous pick, as everyone recognizes how talented he is and how much he would help any team in the Big Ten (damn you Mason for not keeping him in Minnesota).5. Brian at MGO was kind enough to post a diary entry which gives us and new coach Rich Rodriguez a list of Michigan traditions that maybe we were not all aware of. This has inspired two final questions...
After JL there obviously was Beanie Wells, Arrelious Benn, Juice Williams (PUH-LEASE) and several others receiving one vote each.
5A - are there any Michigan traditions that he missed? (here is your chance for some Michigan cheap shots)
This was pretty tame with a few pics of...
5B - Are there any traditions of your school's rival that we should all be aware of?
My personal favorite was the Indiana tradition of taking aerial pictures of a full football stadium when the Hoosiers were hosting Wisconsin or Ohio State. These photos were clearly then distributed as showing the passionate Hoosier fan base, but NOW we all know better (my team of fact checkers did not take the time to verify, we are just going with it as fact!).----------
That is it in a nutshell.