Wednesday, May 29, 2013
The conventional wisdom has been that while RU basketball was going to be pummeled (just like being in the Big East, only worse), their football program had advanced to the point where they could compete in the Big Ten.
Of course, they don't have Greg Schiano any longer and the jury is really still out on Kyle Flood. I have RU alum friends who are convinced that there was a possibility that the RU athletics department was going to wait things out and then once they were officially a Big Ten school instead of an afterthought pursue more "big time" coaches. Who knows. Mike Rice's behavior then was made public and Rutgers made one disastrous move after another. For now, since Flood doesn't appear to have abused any of his players, he's probably safe.
What's not safe, though, is Rutgers in 2014. The Big Ten football schedule was released and RU gets welcomed to the Big Ten with a four-game stretch that could make any lower-tier Big Ten program shudder. From October 4 to November 1, they go vs Michigan, at Ohio State, at Nebraska, vs Wisconsin. Whee! They also have PSU and MSU on that schedule. Have a ball, Rutgers.
Purdue, incidentally, has a conference schedule that goes like this for 2014: vs OMHR (do we have to retire that now that it's no longer a protected rivalry?), at Illinois, vs MSU, at Minn, at Nebraska, vs Wisconsin, vs Northwestern, at IU.
Purdue gets neither of the newbies, so the BS New Jersey tailgate will have to wait. Also of note, RU and Maryland will play in their final conference games of the season against one another -- perhaps they will be each other's forced rival.
We now return you to your regularly schedule sneaker and IndyCar content.