College Football Rankings, Season Predictions: Big Ten Spring Version 2022

Big Ten spring football rankings and predictions with best and worst case scenarios for every team

Big Ten college football rankings and predictions with the realistic best and worst case records and quick analysis – the 2022 spring version.


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So where’s the curveball going to come from this year in the Big Ten?

Last year it was Michigan getting over the hump – at least, it did after losing to a surprising Michigan State team – the year before it was Indiana rising up and Northwestern getting to the Big Ten Championship for the second time in three years, and this year it’s …

Nebraska? Maybe. Maryland? To a point, potentially, or …

Maybe it’s back to Ohio State and 13 other teams.

There’s a whole lot of fun to be had with all 14 teams looking either improved or good enough to make a reasonable push for a strong season. Of course, that’s not how this all works, but it’s Spring. It’s a time for hope.

The rankings are based on how good the teams should be and not the final projected records. Keeping in mind that this all could/might/will change when we make the final calls in August …

2022 College Football Schedules By Teams: All 131 Schools

2022 NFL Draft: Best Picks of All-Time From Every Big Ten School

Who are the Big Ten’s greatest NFL Draft picks of all-time? Here are the top three best picks from each Big Ten program.

Who are the best NFL Draft picks from every Big Ten program? Which players turned into the greatest stars at the next level?


Contact/Follow @ColFootballNews & @PeteFiutak

With the history of the Big Ten there are loads and loads of Hall of Famers and all-time great NFL draft picks to choose from. So who are the best of all-time coming from the conference?

This isn’t a list of the top pro players to come from the Big Ten schools – these are the best draft picks.

The guys who had great careers for someone other than teams that drafted them get knocked down a peg, or aren’t on the list at all. For example, Purdue’s Drew Brees was obviously an all-time NFL great, but for New Orleans, not the Chargers.

The goal for any draft pick is to get a player who performs at a high level for a long period of time, so longevity matters over one short burst of greatness.

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2022 NFL Draft Prospect Rankings, Analysis
QBs | RBs | WRs | TEs | OTsOGs & Cs | DEs & Edge | DTs
LBs | Ss | CBs | 50 Greatest Value Draft Picks Ever
NFL Draft by college over last 5 years: 1-130 rankings

Big Ten Expansion. NOW What Does It Do? 22 Thoughts For 2022, No. 14

Big Ten expansion – what can the conference do to keep up after the SEC landed Texas and Oklahoma?

22 College Football Thoughts for 2022, No. 14: After the SEC landed Texas and Oklahoma, how can the Big Ten possibly respond to expand and keep up the pace?


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22 College Football Thoughts For 2022

Contact/Follow @ColFootballNews & @PeteFiutak
2022 College Football Schedules: All 131 Teams

22 College Football Thoughts For 2022
22, College football is changing, and it’s okay
21, Texas & Oklahoma, you really want the SEC?
20. SEC is really, really good if you like it or not
19. James Madison, welcome to the show
18. Sun Belt is the cool conference
17. Transfer Portal will only get bigger
16. NFL, keep your hands off our announcers
15. Big 12: Get bigger and stronger, or else

14. Big Ten expansion: NOW what does it do?

Conference expansion and realignment have been a part of college football ever since college alliances began, but business-wise, it all went up a few notches in the early 1990s.

The Southwest Conference and Big 8 created the Big 12, Florida State joined the ACC – setting the tone for a wave of additions from the Big East – and Penn State went to the most forward-thinking conference of the bunch, the Big Ten.

Even when the Big Ten wasn’t bringing aboard schools, it was getting everyone talking.

When it has expansion and big business ideas, the B1G usually tells you what it’s going to do – or, at the very least, hints at it – and why? Because it can.

However, after Texas and Oklahoma made the move to the SEC, the Big Ten has been strangely quiet when it comes to conference expansion. As in, like, dead silent.

Under former Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany, the conference had a way of subtly letting out the expansion trial balloons to see which way the wind was blowing. So far under new commissioner Kevin Warren, there’s apparently no interest in adding more schools, everything is fine as is, and …

There aren’t a whole lot of options. That’s the problem. And there’s a bigger existential concern that Big Ten people don’t like to talk about at parties …

Ohio State.

All of a sudden, the SEC is positioning itself to take over the Big Ten as the most dominant revenue producing conference, but it needs more. It needs to make people outside of the southeast part of the country care about the product when it’s not the Alabama vs. Big Other SEC Team of the Moment showdown.

The SEC getting Oklahoma was one thing, but landing Texas changed the game.

First, it’s Texas. Blow off the problems on the football field; that’s the big boy at the table when it comes to revenue producing athletic departments.

Second, it’s Texas. It’s going to step in and be the second-best academic institution in the SEC behind Vanderbilt, or arguably 2B along with Florida.

Third, it’s Texas. Having Texas A&M is great, but you get the University of Texas, you get all the big markets across the entire state including a lockdown of the Dallas/Fort Worth area – the fifth largest media market in the country.

The SEC now owns Dallas, it owns Atlanta (7th largest media market according to the Nielsen Ratings), and it pretty much has Houston (8th), Tampa/St. Petersburg (13th), and Orlando (17th). That’s not quite like having Chicago (3rd), Philadelphia (4th), Washington DC (9th), Minneapolis (14th), Detroit (15th), Cleveland (19th) and whatever parts of New York that cares about college football, but it’s huge.

And the Big Ten totally blew it.


Big Ten 2022 Schedule Analysis: 3 things to know
Illinois | Indiana | Iowa | Maryland | Michigan
Michigan State | 
Minnesota | Nebraska | Ohio State
Penn State | PurdueRutgers | Wisconsin


It was one of those spitballed ideas several years ago when the Big Ten was looking to expand. Texas was – and still is – the PERFECT fit for the Big Ten in every possible way. As I said in an earlier rant, Texas people aren’t doing their jobs – in terms of potential football success, revenue, and academic profile – if it doesn’t do a double-take on this SEC move.

But that’s not going to happen, Texas is going to the SEC, and that opens the gate for every big-time athletic school that would trade it all for a little bit more.

It’s doubtful the SEC could ever get Michigan – horrible academic branding downgrade – but Ohio State? It’s been more than just hinted that the SEC would love to get THE school in Ohio and all but end any possible balance of college football power.

Of course there’s the sports side, but to get all of the Ohio markets – and create a much, much bigger overall media deal – would be a devastating blow to the Big Ten.

No, I don’t think Ohio State is ever leaving the Big Ten, but it sure as shoot has a whole lot of negotiating power with a whole lot of muscle.

So now the Big Ten has to do something splashy to not only keep up with the SEC, but to make the current members richer and happier. 

But how?

There are two expansion issues for the conference. Expansion only makes sense if it raises the revenue for everyone. There’s no reason to keep adding schools just to add schools if it splits up the pie a few more slices. The other issue is the lack of options.

Part arrogance, part negotiating stalemates, part not wanting to add big-time football schools to make life a wee bit harder for the powerhouses – notice there was no griping whatsoever from the football coaches after adding Rutgers and Maryland – the Big Ten didn’t get Texas. It never really came all that close to figuring it out with Notre Dame – that was on both sides. It completely whiffed by not jumping on Missouri and Colorado to expand west, and it didn’t really go hard enough on the top ACC schools when it had the chance. 

That last one is the killer. 

The Big Ten would LOVE to have North Carolina – it fits in the exact same way Texas would have. It would have probably pushed for Georgia Tech for the Atlanta market – just like it wanted Rutgers for New York/New Jersey and Maryland for Baltimore/Washington DC – Boston College and Syracuse would’ve been interesting ideas, and Virginia would be a no-brainer.

But the ACC has its schools locked up until 2035 in a rough media deal – that’s sort of why you haven’t heard much about the SEC putting a fence around the southeast part of the country by taking over Clemson, Florida State, and Miami.

Everything has its price, and there’s always a way, but the ACC is all but out. Notre Dame continues to be a non-starter, and the Big Ten and Pac-12 don’t seem to want to mess with each other in any sort of expansion rumors – even though USC, UCLA, Arizona State, Arizona, and Washington are all probably more in the Big Ten’s thought bubble than many might want to believe.

So now what?

There are only a few schools that make sense for what the Big Ten is looking for. They have to be Tier 1 research universities with a good media reach and the ability expand the overall footprint – don’t worry too much about geography and travel; it’s 1,300 miles from Piscataway to Lincoln.

And it has to have the main schools the respective states – like THE University of Nebraska, and THE University of Maryland, and THE State University of New Jersey.

The easy starting point would be Kansas – great basketball, Tier 1 research, Kansas City and St. Louis markets, easy geographic rival for the Big Ten West – but that’s not exactly matching the SEC getting Oklahoma and Texas.

All of the other Big 12 schools other than TCU have the Tier 1 academic profile, but … nah. West Virginia doesn’t really fit, and the Big Ten isn’t going after Iowa State when it has Iowa, or Kansas State when it can probably get Kansas.

So that leaves the Pac-12. The Big Ten doesn’t want to ruffle that relationship, but business is business, and Colorado would slide right in and be at home in the Big Ten. The Pac-12 would get all mad, and then it would finally do what it should’ve done years ago and snatch Colorado State, San Diego State, and UNLV from the Mountain West.

Colorado and Kansas? Really? That would be the Big Ten’s smartest and best answer to the SEC getting Texas and Oklahoma? 

Yeah – because it works. 

Remember, this is business – don’t get caught up in level of play on the football field. 

Colorado would be about adding Denver – the 16th biggest media market in the country – and Kansas, again, gets you Kansas City (34th) and helps with St. Louis (23rd) to go along with the national basketball base that would park it on the Big Ten Network during the season.

Or nothing could happen, the Big Ten will keep printing money, and it’ll spend its time working on keeping the member institutions from thinking about entering the conference transfer portal.

But it’s the Big Ten. It might be quiet, but ohhhhhhhh, no. It’s not going to sit this one out.

You really think the Big Ten is going to let the SEC take over the world?

22 College Football Thoughts For 2022
22, College football is changing, and it’s okay
21, Texas & Oklahoma, you really want the SEC?
20. SEC is really, really good if you like it or not
19. James Madison, welcome to the show
18. Sun Belt is the cool conference
17. Transfer Portal will only get bigger
16. NFL, keep your hands off our announcers
15. Big 12: Get bigger and stronger, or else

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2022 College Football Schedules: All 131 Teams

 

Wisconsin vs Iowa State Prediction, Game Preview: NCAA Tournament Second Round

Wisconsin vs Iowa State prediction, NCAA Tournament Second Round game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win on Sunday

Wisconsin vs Iowa State prediction: NCAA Tournament Second Round pick and college basketball game preview.


Wisconsin vs Iowa State Game Preview, How To Watch

Date: Sunday, March 20
Game Time: 6:10 pm
Venue: Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee, WI
How To Watch: TNT
Records: Wisconsin (3 seed, 25-7)
Iowa State (11 seed, 21-12)
Region: Midwest

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NCAA Tournament Schedule, Predictions, Game Previews

NCAA Tournament Expert Picks, Predictions: Second Round Sunday Games

The CFN expert picks and predictions for the Sunday second round NCAA Tournament games.

NCAA Tournament predictions, college basketball expert picks for the first round Sunday games


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* next to the pick means the team will win, but not cover.
Click on each game for the game preview and CFN Prediction

NCAA Tournament Second Round: Sunday
Illinois vs Houston | Ohio State vs Villanova
Duke vs Michigan State | Wisconsin vs Iowa State
Notre Dame vs Texas Tech | Auburn vs Miami
Texas vs Purdue | TCU vs Arizona
Final Four Picks | NCAA Tournament Schedule 

NCAA Tournament Second Round
Illinois vs Houston

Line: Houston -4.5, o/u: 133.5

Eric Bolin, RazorbacksWire.com: Illinois
Jeff Feyerer, CFN: Illinois
Pete Fiutak, CFN: Houston
Dan Harralson, VolsWire.com: Houston
Jeremy Mauss, MWwire.com: Houston
Big Game Ben Niewoehner, CFN Illinois
Johnny Rosenstein, SportsBookWire.com: Illinois
Nick Shepkowski, FightingIrishWire.com: Illinois
Scott Steehn, WinnersandWhiners.com: Houston*
Clucko the Chicken, CFN: Illinois
CONSENSUS PICK: Illinois

NEXT: Ohio State vs Villanova Expert Picks, Predictions

NCAA Tournament Expert Picks, Predictions: First Round Friday Games

NCAA Tournament predictions, college basketball expert picks for the first round Friday games

NCAA Tournament predictions, college basketball expert picks for the first round Friday games


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* next to the pick means the team will win, but not cover.
Click on each game for the game preview and CFN Prediction

NCAA Tournament First Round: Friday
Ohio State vs Loyola | Auburn vs Jax State
Texas Tech vs Montana State | Purdue vs Yale
Villanova vs Delaware | USC vs Miami
Alabama vs Notre Dame | Texas vs Va Tech
Illinois vs Chatt | Duke vs Cal St Fullerton
LSU vs Iowa State | Arizona vs Wright State
Houston vs UAB | Michigan State vs Davidson
Wisconsin vs Colgate | Seton Hall vs TCU
Final Four Picks | NCAA Tournament Schedule

NCAA Tournament First Round
Ohio State vs Loyola Chicago

Line: EVEN, o/u: 132.5

Eric Bolin, RazorbacksWire.com: Loyola
Jeff Feyerer, CFN: Loyola
Pete Fiutak, CFN: Loyola
Dan Harralson, VolsWire.com: Ohio State
Jeremy Mauss, MWwire.com: Loyola
Big Game Ben Niewoehner, CFN Loyola
Johnny Rosenstein, SportsBookWire.com: Loyola
Nick Shepkowski, FightingIrishWire.com: Loyola
Scott Steehn, WinnersandWhiners.com: Loyola
Clucko the Chicken, CFN: Ohio State
CONSENSUS PICK: Loyola

NEXT: Auburn vs Jacksonville State Expert Picks, Predictions

Wisconsin vs Colgate Prediction, Game Preview: NCAA Tournament First Round

Wisconsin vs Colgate prediction, NCAA Tournament First Round game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win on Friday

Wisconsin vs Colgate prediction: NCAA Tournament First Round pick and college basketball game preview.


Wisconsin vs Colgate Game Preview, NCAA Tournament First Round How To Watch

Date: Friday, March 18
Game Time: 9:50 pm
Venue: Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee, WI
How To Watch: TBS
Records: Wisconsin (3 seed, 24-7)
Colgate (14 seed, 23-11)
Region: TBS

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NCAA Tournament Schedule, Predictions, Game Previews

Wisconsin vs Michigan State College Basketball Prediction, Game Preview

Wisconsin vs Michigan State prediction, college basketball game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win on Friday.

Wisconsin vs Michigan State prediction, college basketball game preview, how to watch: Friday, March 11


Wisconsin vs Michigan State Game Preview, Big Ten Tournament How To Watch

Date: Friday, March 11
Game Time: 6:30 ET
Venue: Gainbridge Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, IN
How To Watch: BTN
Record: Wisconsin (24-6), Michigan State (21-11)
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All of the CFN Fearless Predictions

Nebraska vs Wisconsin College Basketball Prediction, Game Preview

Nebraska vs Wisconsin prediction, college basketball game preview, how to watch, lines, why each team might – or might not – win on Sunday

Nebraska vs Wisconsin prediction, college basketball game preview, how to watch: Sunday, March 6


Nebraska vs Wisconsin How To Watch

Date: Sunday, March 6
Game Time: 2:00 ET
Venue: Kohl Center, Madison, WI
How To Watch: BTN
Record: Nebraska (9-21), Wisconsin (24-5)
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Purdue vs Wisconsin Prediction, College Basketball Game Preview

Purdue vs Wisconsin prediction, college basketball game preview, how to watch, lines, and why each team might – or might not – win on Tuesday.

Purdue vs Wisconsin prediction, college basketball game preview, how to watch: Tuesday, March 1


Purdue vs Wisconsin How To Watch

Date: Tuesday, March 1
Game Time: 9:00 ET
Venue: Kohl Center, Madison, WI
How To Watch: ESPN
Record: Purdue (24-5), Wisconsin (23-5)
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Today’s Best Bet to Lock in Now

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All of the CFN Fearless Predictions

Purdue vs Wisconsin Game Preview


Why Purdue Will Win

Win this, beat Indiana, and Purdue is at worst the Big Ten co-regular season champion.

That actually doesn’t mean much of anything in a tournament-crazed sport, but it still looks nice on a t-shirt.

Things were rolling along just fine with nine wins in ten games before the offense fell flat with a thud in the 68-65 loss to Michigan State on Saturday.

The O hit just one of nine threes and the defense was less than stellar. The latter was the norm, the former was an anomaly.

Even with the threes not showing up, the Boilermakers were still in the game late because they were hitting everything else on the inside.

They weren’t themselves – there were too many turnovers, they couldn’t find a groove, and again, this is a much, much better team from three than it showed.

However …

– Latest Polls AP | Coaches

Why Wisconsin Will Win

Wisconsin was able to beat the Boilermakers in West Lafayette in early January even when the Purdue threes were falling.

It might not always be pretty, but the team stepped its game up in a big, big way over the last two weeks since the loss to Rutgers. It’s not like the literal fight with Michigan took the team up a notch, but it certainly was a galvanizing moment.

The offense is hitting from the outside, the overall shooting has been a whole lot better, and the defense has been fantastic at guarding the three – three of the last four teams failed to get to 30% from three.

No, Wisconsin can’t get into a shootout if Purdue goes off, but …

Top 25 Game Previews, Predictions

What’s Going To Happen

The Badgers win the Big Ten regular season title – at least a share of it – with a win over Purdue. They take it outright no matter what with a win and then hits the layup against Nebraska.

The Kohl Center is going to be a thing.

It’s not like Wisconsin is unbeatable at home, but it’s more like it’s not getting Purdue on its home floor. The Boilermakers are almost untouchable in Mackey … almost.

They’re 15-1 at home, and that 1 was against Wisconsin.

This won’t be anything beautiful, but the Badgers will battle back after getting down fast.

Purdue will come out running and rolling. It’ll hit a few threes to establish that the Michigan State debacle is over, and then it’ll all slow down.

Wisconsin will chip away at the lead, clamp down late, and it’ll survive with one big late shot and one more defensive stop.

Purdue vs Wisconsin Prediction, Lines

Wisconsin 76, Purdue 72
Line: COMING, o/u: COMING
ATS Confidence out of 5: COMING

Must See Rating: 5

5: Romy
1: Michelle

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2022 College Football Schedules: All 131 Teams