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Previewing the Big Ten 2011 Football Season: Legends vs. Leaders 12

Posted on February 11, 2011 by JA Allen

The Big Ten enlarged to 12 teams starting in 2011.

The Big Ten Football Conference is dramatically changing its landscape for the 2011 season.

The addition of the Nebraska Cornhuskers brings about a division of teams into two leagues and a conference championship game for the first time in the history of the Big Ten Conference.

The Divisions:

Legends: Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska and Northwestern

Leaders: Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin.

Each Big Ten team plays eight conference contests including each team in their respective division plus three conference games outside of their division, crossover contests.

Totally each team in the Big Ten plays twelve games starting on September 3, 2011.

The season concludes with the Big Ten Championship game played on December 3, 2011 in Indianapolis at Lucas Oil Stadium.

While most pundits haggle over the names selected, the division of the teams seems equitable to most.

As the 2011 season looms on the horizon here is a first glimpse of the season ahead in the newly aligned Big Ten Conference.

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Zultan’s BCS Bowl Challenge: Picking the Winners in the Top 25 Bowls 14

Posted on December 08, 2010 by JA Allen

In December the 2010 college football landscape lays wasted after a full season of all-out assault featuring vicious sacks and bone-cracking tackles.

The aerial attacks landed bomb after bomb as receivers somersaulted into opponents’ end zones to light up the scoreboard.

Finally, the victors have risen through the ranks undefeated to lay claim to the No. 1 ranking. This year we are sure––there can be no lingering doubts about who has the best football team in the nation? That indisputable team will be crowned on January 10th. Right?

On then to the anachronistic bowl system which will provide further clarity to the overriding question of who deserves to be playing in the final game of the season. It will all be clear at the end, won’t it, since we have the computer rankings – the infallible BCS?

If you believe this propaganda, you live in Fantasy Land. The All-Seeing Zultan spits in the eye of the BCS and the hordes of college football analysts pocketing millions of dollars who hawk this meaningless bowl system as scientific. Pah-leez.

These network and cable drones know no more than hapless Zultan who––like Chris Fowler–– wishes to see a true play-off system in place.

Crowning a national champion remains largely one huge popularity contest based on tenuous circuitous thought processes. You have major college football conference opponents generally playing a slate of cupcakes during the non-conference season––followed by beating each other up during a hard-fought schedule of conference games.

Because all the meaningful contests during the college football season are held between conference rivals, the only thing we really know for sure is which teams are the best in their respective conferences.

Ranking the conferences against each other is all smoke and mirrors. This year we assume the SEC and the Big Ten are the two best.  Based on what?  Scant statistical evidence if you ask me.

Why not give a berth to each team that has better than a 500 mark in their conference and send them off into a playoff system.  Details could be developed to enhance and complement the current bowl system and money could be made once again for everyone except the players who provide the game.  The irony never escapes the All-Seeing Zultan.

In the current bowl system, Zultan complains vehemently, Michigan State and Boise State, to name two, got royally clipped. Michigan State at 11-1 has every right to play their way into a national championship game––just as does Boise State, Alabama, Stanford, Ohio State, Wisconsin, TCU and on and on.

All teams ranked in the top ten or even the top 25 deserve a chance to go for the Championship. Because, realistically, how excited do you think Oklahoma or Alabama  is going to be playing in the Acme Chipped Beef Bowl after working all season for a shot at the top spot?

Zultan ended his regular season gig spinning in the Toilet Bowl, going down 4-6 in his last forecast where once again he picked against Auburn. Click here to find out all the winners who scored well against the All-Seeing One throughout the 2010 season as well as all other prize winners.

But here it is again – the great Zultan’s Bowl Challenge––a whole new contest and a new chance to win something.

Click here to enter your picks and let us see who is better at selecting winners––you or me, the Mighty Zultan, who promises either to come to your house and sing the theme song for Goldfinger or give you a prize worth something.

Actually anyone who does better than the Big Z will be entered into a drawing for $100 PayPal card and everyone who enters will be entered into a drawing for one of three $15 iTunes cards. These prizes provided by our sponsor Sports Then and Now.

Let the games begin!

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Iowa Football: Hawkeyes Taking Care of Business Against Ohio State 3

Posted on November 18, 2010 by JA Allen

Typically, the Hawkeyes seldom score a victory against the Buckeyes.

It is that time in the college football season when hope may have begun to fade for those teams whose ambitions exceeded their ability to deliver—whose luck has run out.

Often, it is hard not to relive those accumulated missed tackles, extra points and dropped passes.

This inclination might allow disappointment to saturate a team’s outlook in the one or two remaining games because winning now seems not to make a difference.

A single victory cannot take you to that pinnacle you imagined in your future at the beginning of the season.

This is a state of mind that a good coaching staff immediately nips in the bud because every time a college football team walks out on the field, the players make a statement about themselves, their program and the school.

Ending well is every bit as important as beginning well. Kirk Ferentz and staff will bring that point home.

As to the charge of being a “spoiler,” winning games is the goal each and every game during the entire season. Iowa has as much to play for against Ohio State as they did against Northwestern.

Each week the team that wins, is a spoiler.

So being called one now is redundant. Every contest this weekend will celebrate some spoiler’s victory at the end of the game.

The goal to win is exactly what will inspire the Iowa Hawkeyes to upend the Ohio State Buckeyes in Week 12.

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Week Ten of Zultan’s Fearless College Football Forecast… 1

Posted on November 02, 2010 by JA Allen

Zultan's replacement does well in Week 9.

Zultan thanks his friends from Penn State for keeping guest prognosticator MAD in his place.

So far in two seasons Zultan has never achieved perfection – but at times the All-Seeing One has picked 90 percent.

The MAD Man filling in for Zultan in Week 9 did his best to bring ignominy to the Mighty One by hauling in a perfect score.

So close, MAD, and yet so far. Maybe next time!

The key event this past weekend, however, was the Hawkeyes’ BIG victory over the Michigan State Spartans, leaving a trail of carnage and mayhem in the Big Ten for all the pundits to ponder and pontificate about for the next week.

Way to go Hawks!

Only two people did better than guest prognosticator MAD in Week 9 and those perfect folks will be toasted at the end of this article.

We will also announce the next guest prognosticator for Week 11––as the season winds down, leaning toward another dramatic Bowl extravaganza.

Click here to make your choices for Week 10 to see it you can outguess the rookie Phillip Murphy sitting in Zultan’s hot-seat this week.

Wannabe Prognosticator Murphy has managed to outguess the surly seer five times this season––but more on that at the end of the article as well as the true identity of MAD.

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