COLUMBUS, Ohio – This is Jim's age. At least that is what 34 Big Ten writers anticipated in the vote by cleveland.com.
Michigan was chosen as the Preliminary Big Ten football favorite in a tight race with the Ohio State, while 17 writers predicted that Wolverines would be the premiers of the 2019, 14th, chosen Buckeyes, the two selected Nebraska and one selected Northwestern.
This is the ninth year in which cleveland.com has organized voting for league writers, since Big Ten has abandoned the official pre-season forecasts for nearly every other conference. The backside of our survey, which predicts Big Ten champions, has been largely unsuccessful since 2011. Big Ten media days will be held on Thursday and Friday in Chicago, where the league will reveal the list of players, but there are no real predictions.
The Ohio State has been chosen as a favorite pre-season for the last four years and five out of the six previous seasons. Buckeyes are the double defenders of the conference.
Our voters, including at least one writer from all 14 conference teams, as well as several writers covering the league as a whole, have seen two divisions in very different ways. East is a clear race for two teams, while the West is wide open, and five out of seven teams receive at least one first place. However, Nebraska and Iowa were in front of the pack.
Each of the writers was asked to rank each division from top to bottom, with seven points in the first place, up to one point for seventh place. Here's how a full division has come about.
GREAT THREE EASTER
1. Michigan, 222 points (20 votes in first place)
2. Ohio State, 214 points (14)
3. Michigan State, 156 points
4. Penn State, 154 points
5. Indiana, 86.5 points
6. Maryland, 82.5 points
7. Rutgers, 37 points
GREAT THREE WESTERN
1. Nebraska, 198 points (14 votes in the first place)
2. Iowa, 194.5 points (14)
3. Wisconsin, 172.5 points (4)
4. Northwestern, 142,5 points (1)
5. Purdue, 110.5 points
6. Minnesota, 100 points (1)
7. Illinois, 34 points
Here were the most popular predictions for the Big Ten Championship Game for our voters.
Michigan via Nebraska (8)
Michigan via Iowa (8)
Ohio State via Iowa (6)
Ohio State via Nebraska (4)
State of Ohio via Wisconsin (3)
Nebraska across Michigan (2)
Michigan via Wisconsin (1)
State Ohio via Minnesota (1)
Northwestern across Michigan (1)
At this point, uneven results for the first eight years of the survey should be noted. Look at last year. Wisconsin was unanimously a favorite in the West, although many people across the nation were eating on the octopus, who ended 5-4 in the conference, and third in the second. It is anticipated that Northwestern, who last season was 8-1 in the west, finished third.
Last year, voters were granted Ohio State in the east, but Michigan, who linked Buckeyes to the best record in the east at 8-1, was selected fourth in the East. After the underestimation of Wolverines, voters came, predicting that the title of the first conference in Michigan will last from 2004.
Other voting notes:
• Nebraska and Iowa were associated with the highest number of votes in the West, but the Cornhuskers beat with better support for the ballot paper. Eleven voters chose Nebraska's second, while only six chose Iow.
• How Much Was the West Different? Nebraska got the voices for all the first to the fifth. Iowa, Wisconsin, Northwestern, and Minnesota got votes for everything from the first to the sixth.
• Exception? Illinois was a unanimous choice for the last. Illinois also got the last vote a year ago – and then finished at 2-7 at the conference site.
• In the East, 33 out of 34 voters looked like Michigan or another, and 32 out of 34 had Ohio first or second.
• Michigan State lags behind Penn State for third place, since East had clear top-two, clear mid-two, clear bottom-two, and then Rutgers. So East has been seen in this poll for many years.
• Rutgers, who played 0-9 last year at the conference, was almost unanimous to the last. One voter chose Rutgers sixth and one chose Rutgers' fifth. (This vote is confidential, but I will admit it. Yes, I chose Rutgers to go to the conference game and end on the fifth.)
As far as our voting history is concerned, the current league leaders are also favorites from the division of the division, the coming of the title game and the withdrawal from the pre-league responsibilities of the league.
2018: Pick, state Ohio. Really, Ohio State.
2017: Pick, state Ohio. Really, Ohio State.
2016: Pick, state Ohio. Really, Penn State.
2015: Pick, state Ohio. Really, Michigan.
2014: Pick, state Michigan. Really, Ohio State.
2013: Pick, state Ohio. Really, Michigan.
2012: Pick, Michigan. Actual, Wisconsin.
2011: Pick, Nebraska. Actual, Wisconsin.
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