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Preferred Divisional Format


Posted: 12/11/2012 12:41 AM

Preferred Divisional Format 

With all the different alignment theories out there, I thought I'd post this a few places and see what is people's general favorite. Here's a quick rundown with positives and negatives.

Sandwich Method:
East and West Division: Nebraska, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Penn State, Maryland, Rutgers
Central Division: Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Purdue, Illinois, Northwestern, Indiana

Positives: No locked crossovers means even if the conference sticks to 8 conference games, we'll play each team in the other division 2 out 7 years instead of 2 out 12 years. This does divide the big names, is relatively competitive balanced (although the east and west division is a little stronger in the middle).
Negatives: One division more compact than the other. While the closest schools remain together, it does require 1-2 locked long road games for one division. We lose the Little Brown Jug and Ohio State/Penn State as annual games.

East-West (with Michigan State in west)
East: Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State, Purdue, Indiana, Maryland, Rutgers
West: Nebraska, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Michigan State, Illinois, Northwestern
Locked Crossovers: Michigan-Michigan State

Positives: Is fairly competitively balanced top to bottom. While the west only has one of the 4 huge names, the combination of Wisconsin, Iowa, and Michigan State helps its middle a lot. It's also mostly geographic and that will help a little for traveling. It only completely requires one locked crossover (although Illinois-Purdue could be another as that rivalry is important to a lot of Purdue fans).
Negatives: It put 3 of the big names and most the best recruiting territory in the east. It locks Michigan and Michigan State in a crossover meaning the other division will only see them 2 out 12 years and this means the Little Brown Jug will fall way by the wayside. Illinois-Purdue would as well most likely.

East-West (with Purdue in west)
East: Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State, Michigan State, Indiana, Maryland, Rutgers
West: Nebraska, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Northwestern, Purdue
Locked Crossovers: Purdue-Indiana

Positives: It is about as purely geographic as you can get. It only requires one locked crossover (although you could lock Michigan-Minnesota). Most major rivalries are kept.
Negatives: Very uncompetitively balanced. East is loaded with 3 of 4 of the biggest names and gets best recruiting ground and a decent middle when you add in Michigan State.

Current Alignment (Moving Illinois to Legends):
Legends: Michigan, Nebraska, Michigan State, Iowa, Northwestern, Illinois
Leaders: Ohio State, Penn State, Wisconsin, Indiana, Purdue, Maryland, Rutgers
Locked Crossovers: (a few ways this could be done, but I'd guess): Ohio State-Michigan, Penn State-Nebraska, Wisconsin-Minnesota, Purdue-Illinois, Northwestern-Indiana, Michigan State-Rutgers, Iowa-Maryland

Positives: Divides the 4 biggest names equally. Preserves most rivalries.
Negatives: It requires locked crossovers for more than a team or two (which means they'll do it for all) which means we would only play the other division 2 out of 12 years if we keep an 8 game schedule. Wisconsin in on an island in this set-up, left from all it's closest teams in the west.

    How would you like the new divisions aligned (14 teams)

  1. Poll closed on 12/30/2012
  2. Sandwitch Method (4 western schools with 3 eastern): 1 vote
  3. East-West (with Michigan State in west): 2 votes
  4. East-West (with Purdue in west): 2 votes
  5. Current alignment, but move Illinois to Legends: 2 votes
  6. Other (please specify): 2 votes
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Posted: 12/11/2012 10:06 PM

Re: Preferred Divisional Format 

I kind of like a Southern/Northern split:

Northern:  Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Northwestern, Michigan, Michigan State

Southern: Illinois, Purdue, Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State, Maryland, Rutgers

I think this protects most natural/regional rivalries with the notable crossover being Michigan/OSU.  It also breaks up the traditional powers of Nebraska, Michigan, OSU and Penn State for better competitive balance.

Perhaps then changing the Division names to the Great Lakes and Ohio Valley or the Plains and Mountain Divisions.

Last edited 12/11/2012 10:09 PM by BrettofIndy

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Posted: 12/13/2012 8:15 AM

RE: Preferred Divisional Format 

We'll probably go to divisions for basketball as well at some point. I'd love competing in the North under that setup, playing them twice each.
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Posted: 12/13/2012 6:20 PM

Re: Preferred Divisional Format 

Any division that puts the three major traditional powers together of OSU, Michigan and PSU is a bit lopsided in my opinion.  Nebraska certainly falls into a similar category and Wisconsin has been excellent in recent years but still not a traditional power that cleans up with 4 and 5 star studs every recruiting class and based on the reason BB just left tells me they are unlikely to ever be a long term traditional power of the OSU, Michigan caliber.
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