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Archive for September 3, 2017

Sept. 3, 2017 — The world turned upside down

It’s only been a few days, but the league table in the Big Ten is somewhat unfamiliar in terms of where the expectations of fans and coaching staffs were in preseason.

At the top of the table, with four wins and no losses, are Penn State and Rutgers. At the cellar, with a 1-2 record, is the University of Maryland.

Of course, you have to take into account the level of competition that the nine teams have faced in the first two weekends of the season. Maryland faced ACC sides Duke and Boston College, losing to both at the ACC-Big Ten Challenge at Spooky Nook. Meanwhile, Rutgers’ four wins were against Kent State, Towson, Old Dominion, and Penn, only one of which made the NCAA Tournament a year ago.

But the teams in the lower echelons of the Big Ten, such as Northwestern, Maryland, Iowa, and Indiana, shouldn’t worry. Not only are there two months’ worth of games left, but all of the games the Big Ten members have played have been non-league games.

Yep, within the league, the nine Big Ten teams are tied with 0-0 records. League fixtures will begin Sept. 15th, and you know there is going to be a scramble for playoff positioning, especially now that the Big Ten Tournament will have quarterfinal games at campus sites rather than bringing all participants to one site to play down to a champion.