Delany: Divisions would be “irrelevant” for basketball

Jim Delany just finished his teleconference on divisional alignment. Some key points

  • As Delany said it would be all along, competitive balance was the most important factor determining divisional alignment. Delany said the conference used data going back to 1993, which was the first year Penn State played  in the league and was shortly after Division I-A teams had their scholarship totals cut from 95 to 95, to determine balance. Through that, the conference decided that Ohio State, Michigan, Penn State and Nebraska were in the top tier and need to be split with two teams going in one division and two in another. After that, it was decided that Iowa and Wisconsin were in the next tier and should be separated as well. The other six teams, by their rationale, were all in the same group and were split in kind.
  • Two scheduling ideas were provided to the athletic directors. One was a schedule that protected important rivalries and kept key ones like Ohio State-Michigan and Purdue-Indiana on the last game of the season. Another included nothing but intra-divisional games in the last two weeks of the conference season to provide a build up to the conference championship game. Delany said the first model was one the A.D’s were happy with.
  • Delany said the fans voices were heard in the process, especially when it came to the traditional rivalries. He said he got thousands of calls and e-mails from Ohio State and Michigan fans who wanted to see the rivalry stay in the same position. He said he also heard a lot from Purdue and Indiana fans. “They were less numerous, but equally heartfelt,” he said. (more…)

IU releases statements on alignment, schedule

Indiana put out its official release on division alignment and the schedule. It follows.

IU Athletics Releases 2011-2012 Conference Football Schedules, Comments on New Divisional Alignment

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – IU Athletics tonight released its 2011 and 2012 Big Ten football schedules following the league’s announcement of new divisions for football effective next season. The new alignment will place Indiana in a division with Illinois, Ohio State, Purdue, Penn State and Wisconsin.

The alignment ensures that Indiana will annually face longstanding rival Purdue and each other member of its respective division. Indiana’s annual Old Oaken Bucket game against Purdue will continue to be played on the final week of the regular season. In addition, the conference has designated that Indiana will annually play a cross division game against Michigan State, which allows the teams to continue to play for The Old Brass Spittoon.


Glass pleased with divisional alignment

Fred Glass said he got just about everything he wanted from the Big Ten’s divisional alignment.

For the conference itself, he said, he was hoping for balance, something that made geographical sense, and something that maintained traditional rivalries, which were the three tenants that Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany said he was trying to use as criteria. Glass said he thought the division split provided that.

“We wanted competitive balance, for the conference and for IU,” Glass said. “If we made it strictly geographic, we probably would’ve been in the same division as Penn State, Ohio State and Michigan, and I think that would’ve been competitively unfair.”

For his school itself, Glass said it was important to him to keep Purdue in IU’s division and to keep the Old Oaken Bucket game on the final weekend of the regular season. That was also achieved.

“I wanted to play them every year and I wanted it to be the last game,” Glass said. “And I think it’s good that we’re in the same pennant race, if you will.”

The rest of the division also worked out in Glass’s favor with Ohio State, Penn State, Illinois and Wisconsin. Ohio State and Illinois typically draw well because the schools are of short driving distance from Bloomington. Ohio State especially tends to bring a large fan base, which comes close to packing Memorial Stadium.

“I’m really really pleased about that,” he said. “That was sort of gravy. There’s no hiding from the big teams, the traditional powers in the conference. But if I’ve got to play one of the four on a regular basis, I’d sure like it to be Ohio State just because of the attendance.”

Glass’s one quibble with the schedule, though was that to make everything work, the conference had to mostly toss out the home-road rotations that had been in place through 2010. For that reason, the Hoosiers play at Ohio State in both 2010 and 2011.

“It’s kind of a drag to go to Columbus two years in a row both competitively and attendance wise,” Glass said. “But everyone has a story like that. In the big scheme of things, they wanted a balanced division and they did a nice job balancing that.”

IU conference schedules for 2011 and 2012

This is how Indiana’s conference slates will shake out for the first two years of the new alignment.


Oct. 1  Penn State

Oct. 8 Illinois

Oct. 15 at Wisconsin

Oct. 22 at Iowa

Oct. 29 Northwestern

Nov. 5 at Ohio State

Nov. 19 at Michigan State

Nov. 26 Purdue (more…)

Big Ten announces divisions

Andy Katz’s report was right. Indiana will play in a division with Ohio State, Penn State, Wisconsin, Illinois and Purdue. The Hoosiers’ permanent crossover opponent will be Michigan State. From the Big Ten:

Big Ten division winners to meet in inaugural Big Ten Football Championship Game

Park Ridge, Ill. – The Big Ten Conference office announced football division alignments beginning with the 2011 season as recommended by conference directors of athletics and reviewed and supported by the Big Ten Council of Presidents/Chancellors. Nebraska will officially begin conference competition in 2011, giving the Big Ten 12 football programs for the first time in conference history.

The winner of each Big Ten division will meet in the inaugural Big Ten Football Championship Game, to be played December 3, 2011, at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. The championship game will determine the Big Ten Champion and the conference’s participant in the Rose Bowl Game or Bowl Championship Series National Championship Game.

The Big Ten football division alignments will include a division featuring Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin, and a division featuring Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska and Northwestern. Each school will play the other five schools within its division and will also face three teams from the other division, including one cross-division matchup guaranteed on an annual basis. The guaranteed cross-division matchups are Illinois-Northwestern, Indiana-Michigan State, Ohio State-Michigan, Penn State-Nebraska, Purdue-Iowa and Wisconsin-Minnesota. Names for each Big Ten football division will be announced at a later date.


IU enters agreement for local programming deal with Comcast.

From IU sports information:

IU Athletics Enters Agreement with Comcast to Air Athletics Related Programming in Indiana Markets

BLOOMINGTON, Ind.- The Indiana University Department of Intercollegiate Athletics announced today that the department has entered into an agreement with communications provider Comcast to broadcast IU sporting events and athletics related programming in its Indiana markets on XFINITY channel 81 and On Demand.  Events carried by XFINITY are select Olympic sporting events that were not slated for broadcast on the Big Ten Network or

Games carried by XFINITY will be broadcast tape delayed on channel 81, HomeTown Sports Indiana, and will be made available for viewing On Demand on Hoosier TV.  In addition to sporting events, the Hoosier Country 105.1 IU Football Tailgate Show will also be available On Demand.  XFINITY digital cable customers, throughout the state, can access the IU programming by selecting “Hoosier TV” from the On Demand menu and then “Sports.”

“This partnership with Comcast is an ideal opportunity for us to bring our excellent Olympic sports programs to our Indiana fans,” said Indiana University Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Fred Glass.  “We are thrilled to launch this initiative and give our programs the attention they so richly deserve”.


Changes for us

Don’t worry — no one else is leaving.

The Herald-Times has promoted Pat Beane to sports editor, replacing Chris Korman. Beane, previously our ASE, has long handled the night operations on the desk and that will continue in his new role. He’ll also get the distinct pleasure of managing our motley group.

Andy Graham is coming back to sports from the H-T’s news department. You veterans will remember Andy as a key part of the H-T’s sports coverage for many years. He will be the No. 2 man for Indiana football, including writing columns. He’ll also cover high school boys’ basketball in the winter.

I’ll be taking over as the No. 2 on IU basketball, while also remaining as the high school football beat writer.

What does this mean for all of you? We have another voice to add to our arsenal, and its an experienced one. He’s still a news writer until Sept. 10, but I am sure he’ll begin posting very soon.

And with that, David Bowie’s “Changes.”

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