Columnist Says The Big Ten ‘Needs’ Nebraska To Emerge

first_imgShot of Nebraska flag.LINCOLN, NE – OCTOBER 27: A flag bearer for the Nebraska Cornhuskers waves the flag after a touchdown against the Bethune Cookman Wildcats at Memorial Stadium on October 27, 2018 in Lincoln, Nebraska. (Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images)The last few years have been a bit tough for Nebraska. They’ve endured back-to-back losing seasons for the first time in nearly 50 years. But one columnist suggests that the entire Big Ten conference may need Nebraska to emerge as a bona fide power in the years to come.In a column for the Omaha World-Herald, Sam McKewon suggested that Nebraska becoming a power in the Big Ten West could “save the league from making decisions that probably don’t help.” At Big Ten Media Days, some coaches raised the possibility of discussing divisional realignment or a move down to eight conference games, which is what the ACC and SEC currently have.He pointed to the Ohio State-Michigan rivalry essentially deciding the Big Ten, giving the conference overall a reduced “strength of perception.”“…the Huskers could help save the league from making decisions that probably don’t help, like reducing the number of conference games, scheduling too many FCS contests or ditching divisions, which threatens to reduce the league to an Ohio State-Michigan storyline that led to zero national titles and four measly Rose Bowl wins in the 1970s and 1980s.”Since the conference realigned into the Big Ten East and West divisions in 2014, the East winner has won the Big Ten title game each time. As the division’s biggest historic power, Nebraska may need to be the team that steps up in the West. The relatively lower perception of the Big Ten compared to the SEC may be contributing to the conference winner being snubbed from the College Football Playoff in the last three seasons.McKewon concluded that Iowa and Wisconsin have missed their chances to be the teams that elevate the conference.Nebraska head coach Scott Frost himself has suggested that Nebraska needs to be the school to do it.During Big Ten Media Days he said point blank that “the West hasn’t been as good as it should be” due to Nebraska’s struggles.“If I’m being honest, the West hasn’t been as good as it should be because Nebraska hasn’t been as good as it should be,” he said. “We can do a lot through the work we’re doing to try and get the program where it belongs to help the West be competitive and just as dominant as every other league in the country.”With high expectations coming into 2019, we’ll see if Frost can get his Huskers to seize that opportunity.[Omaha World-Herald]last_img

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