Blue Ribbon’s College Basketball Yearbook is set to drop sometime next month and their predictions for the Big Ten conference have surfaced online recently. Since we’ve covered the other three major publications, it’d make sense to touch on Blue Ribbon’s projections (especially as I’m a fan of their preview, mainly because they’re really the only one to legitimately cover mid-major programs).
Anyway, the predicted conference order can be seen below:
- Michigan State
- Penn State
- Ohio State
I’ve mentioned before, but once again we get the same top four teams, with second through fourth being the only variation. Blue Ribbon is also pretty high on Michigan and is also calling for the Badgers to not finish in the top four (would make sense but...well, you know).
I think the biggest takeaway is that there is little optimism across all of the covered publications when it comes to the new hires in the conference. Of course there’s been a ton of roster turnover and it’s not like Indiana, Ohio State or Illinois are ready as is to compete for a conference title, but it still seems a touch weird for everyone to be so down on all three teams. That’s particularly true for Indiana. As a Purdue fan I’d love to see them down towards the bottom of the conference and everything, but even with everyone they’ve lost I still don’t see them finishing anywhere near 12th place.
There’s also a recurring theme with most predictions not seeing Nebraska or Rutgers escaping the basement of the Big Ten. That could prove problematic for Nebraska if that actually does happen. While it was debatable if Tim Miles was or wasn’t on the hot seat, with Nebraska now set to bring in a new athletic director, Miles needs results in a hurry. Even if he’s a fan favorite, the Cornhuskers haven’t had much to show the last several seasons in Lincoln and he could be out of a job if things don’t improve.
One last tidbit, but Blue Ribbon actually didn’t list Miles Bridges as their Big Ten player of the year. Instead they went with Wisconsin’s Ethan Happ. Vincent Edwards, Bryant McIntosh and Nate Mason joined the former two players for the publications preseason all-conference team.