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Tuesday, February 13, 2007

To the SEC, with love

Many readers wrote to tell us about - and EDSBS had a story on - Big 10 commish Jim Delaney's open letter on the front of the Big 10 website in which he discusses the Big 10 vis a vis the SEC...

To Fans of the Big Ten and College Football

Feb. 9, 2007

Greetings from the Big Ten Conference,

With the conclusion of another tremendous college football season and the recent national signing day, there has been a lot written and said about the Big Ten's recruiting efforts across the country, including a recent article in the Chicago Sun-Times entitled "Big Ten needs to find new talent pool - fast" (see full article here). In response to these commentaries, it seems premature for us to lower our admission standards or give up on the tremendous talent pool in the Midwest. No doubt national programs must recruit nationally wherever the talented students and athletes live. Hats off to Florida and the SEC -- they had a great year. We believe that both the Big Ten and the SEC have been and remain two of the greatest college football conferences in the country. But you may want to keep in mind the following as you review the various recruiting services, listen to talking heads and reflect the blogosphere out there as they compare these two fine conferences. I think most people would agree that head-to-head competition is an effective method to compare relative strengths between competitive entities:

* The Big Ten was 2-1 vs. the SEC in this past season's bowl games.

* The Big Ten is 8-6 vs. the SEC in bowl games over the last five years
* The Big Ten is 13-13 vs. the SEC in bowl games over the last decade.
* Over the last nine years of Bowl Championship Series games, the Big Ten leads all conferences with 15 berths while ranking second with eight victories. The SEC tops all leagues with nine wins and ranks second to the Big Ten with 13 appearances.
* In the last 10 years the Big Ten has produced two national champions compared to three for the SEC.
* In the last 15 years the Big Ten has produced five Heisman Trophy winners, more than any other conference. Over that same time span, the SEC has claimed one Heisman.
* While the SEC ranked first among various recruiting rankings, the Big Ten ranked second or third nationally with four to five programs rated among the top 25 recruiting classes.
* The Big Ten has a history of developing players - the most recent Heisman Trophy winner, Troy Smith, was one of the last players to receive a scholarship from Ohio State.
* The Big Ten has slightly less than 300 players in the NFL while the SEC has slightly more than 300; Sixteen former Big Ten players earned Super Bowl rings with the Indianapolis Colts earlier this month.

I love speed and the SEC has great speed, especially on the defensive line, but there are appropriate balances when mixing academics and athletics. Each school, as well as each conference, simply must do what fits their mission regardless of what a recruiting service recommends. I wish we had six teams among the top 10 recruiting classes every year, but winning our way requires some discipline and restraint with the recruitment process. Not every athlete fits athletically, academically or socially at every university. Fortunately, we have been able to balance our athletic and academic mission so that we can compete successfully and keep faith with our academic standards.

Let's see if the five- and 10-year trend lines hold or whether the recruiting services and talking heads are seeing a new day. We are quite proud of our history and tradition and remain optimistic about the future of Big Ten football.

Thanks.

Jim Delany

Now, as you probably guessed, Jimbo's little missive has provided plenty of fodder for off-season college football blogs (thank you, Jim). And as you also probably guessed, SEC fans are none too pleased by Jimmy's insinuation that their schools are stocked with - oh, what's the phrase I'm looking for...? Oh yeah - fucking morons.

On the positive side, like anybody defending a conference they head up (especially one that has been blasted of late about a certain "speed" issue, aka "the thing cfb writers write about when they don't have any new angles to write about), he sticks up for member schools, pointing out that the popular "SEC is hands down the best" myth is really just that, OSU's recent drubbing not withstanding.

On the not so positive side, I'm really not sure what Delany hoped to accomplish with the letter and, more specifically, his "you're only good because you recruit stupid people" implication regarding the SEC.

What say you, dear MZone reader?

23 comments:

Sundawg said...

Tried to respond but, having attended an SEC school, can't work the computer.

Richard Cranium said...

Sundawg I am surpirsed you are even breathing. Trying to do 2 things at once can be strenuous.

Being from a Big Ten school I was asked by my current employer to come down to Georgia and "clean up the work ethic of all those Rednecks" not my words theirs. I have to say the talent in the SEC comes from the beautiful women and that alone. It is also easier for me down here to manipulate the minds of these ill-equipped inbred men and steal women away with a simple wink. I do love the weather down here, but why don't you get over the letter and take it in stride. After all he was talking over your head. :)

Sundawg said...

DH, We’re getting used to this condescending mentality; the insects at Ga. Tek use the same logic after their annual butt-kicking. As for stealing women with a wink, a mud-covered truck and a six-pack work better, but you’d need to leave downtown Atlanta.

Anonymous said...

Amen!

Out of Conference said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Out of Conference said...

I greatly enjoy the opportunity to have fun reading this blog, with huge thanks to Yost, Benny, et al, and I try not to be much of an SEC homer (at least not as much as LSUoverUSC and Gator1377), but since you ask for comments to Delaney's excuse making, here goes-

You think Delaney could think of a better excuse for OSU getting their asses handed to them than because OSU recruits brighter students.

Facts Mr. Delaney neglected to share about his beloved bowl records against the SEC- his two brightspot athletic institutions, Michigan and tOSU both have losing records against the SEC in bowl games.

For all you fine folks that found offense in my "me ruv you rong time" comments about the Asian student beer bonging or the fact that I was able to share in the general humor in the Arabic countdown timer, if you're head isn't spinning with Delaney's blatant racism, then you're wearing blinders. Who the hell else is he referring to except young African-American men when he makes this statement, "I love speed and the SEC has great speed, especially on the defensive line, but there are appropriate balances when mixing academics and athletics." So, fast black kids are dumb, is that it Mr. Delaney? Honorable folks resign their positions or get fired when they make a blunder like that - Howard Cosell, Jimmy the Greek, etc. But this is the asshat that helped think up the BCS and whined for a late uniform start date to the college baseball season because his smart white kids were at supposedly at a disadvantage. I don't expect him to issue a sincere apology, I don't expect him to resign, I don't expect justice in situations like this because in all honesty, college football left the realm of fair and noble student-athletes interests a long time ago thanks to idiots like this.

Out of Conference said...

Don't get me wrong - I think the SEC commish is an asshat as well.

Anonymous said...

Actually "Out of Conference", you do not have your facts right. I won't bother to even look into tOSU's record against the SEC in bowl games because we all know that they are very fond of defending themselves as the "best program ever" but I will set you straight about my beloved Wolverines. Michigan is 5-3 against the SEC in bowl games. Even Carr is 4-2. Carr has beaten the SEC four out of the last five times he has played against them in a bowl.

MGoBlue93 said...

The SEC cannot be all that bright... their commish heads the BCS and where does all the BCS whining come from in this country? That's right the SEC. You'd think the guy would try to protect his teams a little more.

On the not so positive side, I'm really not sure what Delany hoped to accomplish with the letter and, more specifically, his "you're only good because you recruit stupid people" implication regarding the SEC.

I agree... nice to read the letter though, many posters have been debunking SEC myths for quite some time now.

Even though it's a different conference, Bobby Bowden said, when he was blowing everyone out in the 90s, that he recruits speed first and intelligence second. So Delany doesn't have the market cornered on the southern stupid people rant.

OOC... check Michigan's record against the SEC since 2000 (4-1). Now, I'm not saying U of M doesn’t have a history of choking in big bowl games but the only blemish is a butt kicking from fat ass Phulmer.

Nobody is saying the Big 10 is better than the SEC Folks are just saying don't believe the SEC hype.

Out of Conference said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MGoBlue93 said...

OOC... so what you're saying is the Big 10 would be much better head to head against the SEC if it wasn't for tOSU dragging the record down?

Out of Conference said...

I admit I didn;t check my facts first - I didn't think I needed to because I thought I was right. I thought I heard an announcer during bowl season that Michigan also had a losing record. If I'm wrong I apologize. It must have been Wisky since it makes more sense that an announcer may have said that since that was a B10-SEC bowl matchup. Thanks for setting me straight. I don't have a source of football data like I use Boyd's for college baseball data.

Out of Conference said...

I found this on google http://football.stassen.com/records/multi-conference.html

(1920 - 2006 - not sure of accuracy of the data, why they chose 1920, or what it actually represents, I only provide the pictures, you provide the war)

B10 schools against SEC schools (reg season and bowls)
Michigan 11-4-1 (impressive)
Wisky 2-7-1
tOSU 3-9-1
PSU 16-19-0
Ind U 20-19-0
Iowa 3-3-0
Ill 1-5-0
Purdue 2-4-0
MSU 5-6-1
NW 2-7-1
Minn 6-3-0 (ode to the glory years)

out of curiosity,
SoCar vs B10: 4-3
SoCar vs SEC: 61-136-7 (ouch)

So, mgoblue 93, to point blank answer your question, you might need to shitcan more than tOSU.

MGoBlue93 said...

OOC... if you put the Big 10 side by side with the SEC, there's no way in hell any reasonable person would say IU, MSU, NW, etc., is head and shoulders better than Vandy, SEC's MSU, Ole Miss, Kentucky, etc.

In fact the same type of exercise can be done with the ACC, Big 12, and Pac 10.

I'm not so much a Big 10 apologist as I get tired of the take that one major conference in college ball is head and shoulders above all the others. For any one conference to say they dominate the land is just silly... everyone has their tOSUs, Texases, USC, and UFs. Then there are some OUs, Michigan, Oregons, and Auburn. Finally every conference has NWs, Baylors, Miss States, and Washingtons... all great schools that graduate their players but are competitively challenged right now.

And you know what...the head to head records PROVE it -- Delany's letter... a good idea; probably not; but right on the mark!

Go Blue Gabe said...

#1 Too forward, maybe. But I'm glad he had the balls to say it.

#2 Why does someone always have to twist everything into some kind of racial issue?

Reed4AU said...

MGoBlue93 said: "Finally every conference has NWs, Baylors, Miss States, and Washingtons... all great schools that graduate their players but are competitively challenged right now."

Mississippi St.? Are you freakin kidding me. MSU makes Alabama look like Harvard.

I certaintly won't say the SEC is clearly better every year, but they sure were this year. Sec was 6-3 in bowls with their top 2 teams destroying their supposed BCS equals(although I don't think anyone ever referred to the Irish as LSU's equal.) The big 10 went 2-6(ouch). I understand that the two wins were over SEC teams, however that doesn't take away the fact that the league's 2 juggernauts got their BCS butts kicked up and down the field.

Out of Conference said...

Mgoblue93 - nice post and I'm with you 100%.

GoBlueGabe - name me one SEC team- nay, name me any team in America with dominating speed on the defensive line that is made up of predominately white kids on that line. Delaney used the words "especially on the the defensive line." Not me. Delaney stepped out of bounds with his comment, "I love speed and the SEC has great speed, especially on the defensive line, but there are appropriate balances when mixing academics and athletics." So you can't have speed on the defensive line and smarts at the same time. Nice. I understand what he was trying bt failed miserably to claim. I understand he was not wanting to sound like he was making a racist comment. I would take a good guess that he is not a racist, in fact. I get that, but it didn't come out that way. If he left out "especially on the defensive line" I don;t think he'd draw as much criticism. Had Urban, Tommy T, Spurrier, or Fat Phil made his exact comment I'm guessing you're leading the pack in demanding an explanation.

I didn't include The Orgeron in that list of SEC coaches because he eats Velociraptor young while making their parents watch. Someone like that can say what they damn well want.

brandon cox said...

Hey man, I got to shit.

Anonymous said...

Is this a joke? How can you claim that the SEC is not head and shoulders ahead of every conference in football? The fact that the number 1 and number 3 teams in our conference won BCS games by over 20 points should be more than enough proof. The bowl games can't possibly be used as accurate rankings, because they are put together to play teams that are evenly matched.

For example, South Carolina(SEC) played Houston(C-USA) this year in their bowl game. Had Houston won, C-USA would have had a 1-0 record against the SEC, which according to your logic would make them a better conference. The only flaw is that Houston is the C-USA champion, where Scar is one of the bottom ranked SEC teams. These analogies mean nothing. Show me BCS results, where it shows the top few teams in the conferences, and then you have a valid argument.

"The SEC beats us because our academic standards are tougher than theirs!"? Gimme a break, the Notre Dame defense? Despite the flaw in this logic, which is only increased by the obvious bias and ignorance of you people, Florida is ranked as the 47th best college in the country, as opposed to OSU, which is ranked 57th, and UF is also ranked as being more selective, so please throw that argument out the window.

As for the south being rednecks with no work ethic, go to a place like Cleveland, Cinci, or Indianapolis and compare it with Atlanta, Miami, Orlando, or even Charlotte, and tell me where you find more "rednecks." Hicks dont just come from the South.

This blog is a pathetic attempt by a group of sore losers to fall back on a pathetic and dated stereotype of a region, which even in itself is not indicitive of the people who attend the colleges in said region. In attempting to play off your defeat by laughing at the supposed ignorance of southerners, you have done nothing more than expose your own.

Out of Conference said...

Anon - as an SEC fan/alumn myself, I'll call you out. Get a username and join the party before spewing stuff you read on EDSBS comments. Obviously you don't read this blog very much if you think MZone guys fit the description you gave them in your last paragraph.

the walrus said...

I could probbably type up a few more observations between the Big 10 and the SEC that would boarderline on outright bias against the intelligence/morality of southeastern athletics. But it would be a waste of time.

College athletics as a whole reek of BS.

It's just my opinion that the SEC reeks a little worse than most.

Yost said...

Thanks, OOC.

Anonymous said...

Last time I checked, SEC schools use the same entrance requirements for it's athletes (outside Vanderbilt and Northwestern) that every school in the BIG 10 does...

Am I missing something here, Jimbo? I mean, I know I'm an ignorant southerner and all.

Oh and Didn't Auburn finish 3rd in college football APR (the new bench mark for athletic academics) and 1st in public institutions...

"I love speed and the SEC has great speed, especially on the defensive line, but there are appropriate balances when mixing academics and athletics. Each school, as well as each conference, simply must do what fits their mission regardless of what a recruiting service recommends. I wish we had six teams among the top 10 recruiting classes every year, but winning our way requires some discipline and restraint with the recruitment process. Not every athlete fits athletically, academically or socially at every university. Fortunately, we have been able to balance our athletic and academic mission so that we can compete successfully and keep faith with our academic standards. "