Over the summer, me and Bryan M. Vance from Hustle Belt decided that it's ridiculous that we don't do more joint articles. 1) We're both Midwest-ish conferences with hopes of Atlantic domination, 2) That Atlantic domination includes schools we're not so sure of, 3) The B1G-MAC puns could be off the charts, and 4) Well, because we're all part of SB Nation and we want to show off some other talented writers.
So, we thought to ourselves, "You know what would be awesome? It would be super awesome if we took that whole idea of relegation and promotion serious." The rest, as they say, was history, and below you have our Week 1 B1G-MAC Relegation. Just so you know how this works, each week Bryan and I will chat about the one B1G team that deserves relegation to the MAC that week and the one MAC team that deserves promotion. We will host the latter part here at OTE and the discussion on the B1G team heading to the MAC will be hosted over at Hustle Belt. I think this will be a lot of fun, and I look forward to you all telling me I picked the wrong team. Lucky for you, I GET TO DO WHAT I WANT!
This week was especially fun because we had an unexpected team punished for their transgressions, and a somewhat 'by default' promotion. Follow along as Bryan and I discuss this week's B1G-MAC Swap.
Jesse: So Bryan, we have this genius idea to relegate one B1G team and promote one MAC team each week, but we only get to really go by our gut feelings after the first week, right? So that means wild overreactions! WILD OVERREACTIONS ARE THE BEST!
Bryan: Hell, isn't football season just one big overreaction anyway? I love this idea. Finally, we get to get rid of UMass. Oh, wait, we're nominating the best MAC team? Is there an OVC blog out there I can send UMass to? No? Very well. Let's get our EPL on and promote/demote some teams!
The MAC got off to an OK start, with 8 of the 13 teams winning. That is of course until you realize seven on those wins came against FCS squads, and two of them were sloppy wins at at that. Of the MAC vs FBS games, the only win the MAC notched was against another MAC team. So surely that team (Ohio) is the best in the MAC, right? Right (for now).
Jesse: Well, I suppose it's all how you look at it. Let me start off by saying it is damn impressive that the MAC does Week 1 Conference matchups. I think a lot of us in the B1G would like to see that, if for nothing else that it would actually help our national profile. That being said, after watching the B1G this last week, I have a feeling we see the non-con as Preseason more than anything. But hey, a FBS win is deserving of a little praise. Let's talk about the Fighting Soliches. How good are they?
Bryan: Well, right now they're above Bowling Green and NIU in the MAC standings. So if we ended the season today they'd be MAC Champions good. But really, it's hard to tell.
Against Kent State the defense looked rock solid, holding the Golden Flashes to -4 rushing yards in the first half. The secondary held up pretty well too, but offensively Ohio has some issues. They're breaking basically an all-new unit, and it showed with four straight second-hand droves ending in fumbles. If the 'Cats can wear stick' em they'd be an offensive juggernaut. Do you guys allow stick'em in the B1G?
Jesse: -4 Rushing Yards, eh? Sounds like they were playing last year's Michigan team... That was uncalled for on my part. Whatever. Anyhow, I'm not sure if we ‘allow' stick'em, but I've been lobbying for it for years. Have you seen how many fumbles my Cornhuskers have usually?!?! We're just really excited we didn't fumble for the first time in two years.
Alright, so let's get to it. If we put Ohio in the B1G last week, we probably see them finish... well, looking at early results at our Power Poll, I think probably somewhere in the 8-12 spot. I legitimately think that defense could have handled Northwestern last week, and depending on which Illinois offense you believe is real, they probably could have taken them down. Purdue looked suspect for great swaths of time as well. Here's where it starts to get sketchy for me. You've got Rutgers pulling out a win at Washington State, so can you say Ohio would be that much better than the Cougars? Moreover, how about Indiana's offense taking on the Bobcats? If we're being honest, I think they'd intro around 11th in our poll. How does that sound? Am I being too harsh on Ohio?
Bryan: Nope, not at all. The ‘Cats only put up two touchdowns, and had to let a kicker win the game (how B1G of them right?) so 10th or 11th seems about fair to me. The defense was good, but part of their performance was due to the fact that Kent State lost Dri Archer to the NFL, and their leading returning rusher, Trayion Durham, has a bad foot. I think if Ohio's D is put up against Indiana's O, things start getting sloppy. I think the ‘Cats could beat Purdue, maybe Northwestern, certainly Michigan, if only because Brady Hoke's mind would melt when he realizes there's more than one school in the state of Ohio. But that's probably about it, for now.
For Part II of the fun, where we may or may not drop Northwestern, check out Hustle Belt!