Goodbye Leaders, So Long Legends: Big Ten To Change Division Names In 2014

Brian Spurlock-US PRESSWIRE

Divisional setups are also set and should be voted on soon.

Lost in the hubbub that was Blue-White Weekend was the report from Brett McMurphy and Adam Rittenberg from Friday night that said the chancellors and presidents of the Big Ten are set to vote on new divisional setups and names for the 2014 season as well as approving the new nine-game conference slate beginning in 2016.

Gone are the much-ridiculed Leaders and Legends monikers and in turn come East and West. Simple enough, I suppose. About a month ago, it was reported that the divisions were almost set, but a decision on Indiana and Purdue was holding up the process. Well, common sense prevailed and since West Lafayette is west of Bloomington, the Boilermakers are heading to the West while the Hoosiers head to the East. The Indiana-Purdue game will now be the only protected cross-divisional match-up. For Nittany Lion fans, this means that Nebraska will no longer be a permanent staple on the schedule after 2014.

New divisional set-ups look like this:

New Big Ten Divisions
East West
Indiana Illinois
Maryland Iowa
Michigan Minnesota
Michigan State Nebraska
Ohio State Northwestern
Penn State Purdue
Rutgers Wisconsin

Looking at the new divisions, it's obvious to see that competitive balance was not taken into consideration as the East is loaded with Michigan, Michigan State (who, yes, had a down 2012 but is normally very good), Ohio State and Penn State. Three-time defending Big Ten champion Wisconsin moves to the West with Nebraska and up-and-coming Northwestern, but it is easy to say with a certain amount of confidence that the East will hold the power in the Big Ten come 2014.


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