We have favorites and we have loyalties, but if the Big Ten is going to climb out the national perception doldrums, we're going to have to do it together. That means that we have to all be pulling in the same direction. Here's what I want to see from each Big Ten team in their non-conference battles this week. These columns start getting really short this week...
Purdue (vs. Notre Dame)
I want you to bring the team that throttled Toledo and took Oregon to the brink. I don't want to ever see that NIU team again. The Irish got beat up in their two games against the Michigan teams. Take advantage of that. No one expects you to win, but making some positive steps before you enter conference play is a really good idea.
Tackle. Wrap Up. Hit.
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What I Want
I want to see Purdue play hard and keep it close.
What I Expect
The Irish win by about 17. That NIU game has left a really bad impression in my mind.
What We've Got So Far
The Big Ten is 24-8 (.750) out of conference. The league is 5-6 against BCS Conference teams (plus Notre Dame). The league has two losses to non-BCS teams (Northern Illinois over Purdue and Central Michigan over Michigan State).