Throughout June we've been bringing you a look at our favorite time of the year - College Football Preview Magazine Month. So far we've gone through Lindy's and Phil Steele, but today it's one of the oldest of all the magazines out there - Athlon Sports.
You should know the drill by now, so let's just dive right in to the deep end, shall we?
Wisconsin ranks 17th and predicted to finish 2nd in the Leaders division to Ohio State, but play in the Big Ten title game. Here are the full standings with predicted records as well.
Big Ten Standings:
1. Michigan 11-2 (7-1)
2. Nebraska 10-2 (6-2)
3. Michigan State 9-3 (5-3)
4. Northwestern 7-5 (3-5)
5. Iowa 7-5 (3-5)
6. Minnesota 5-7 (2-6)
1. Ohio State 11-1 (7-1)
2. Wisconsin 9-4 (5-3)
3. Penn State 7-5 (4-4)
4. Illinois 6-6 (3-5)
5. Purdue 6-6 (3-5)
6. Indiana 3-9 (0-8)
Big Ten Championship: Michigan over Wisconsin
* O.k., seriously, this is the part of Athlon that I hate. They throw out their predicted records of finish yet don't explain them at all. Who are the three teams in the Big Ten they see Wisconsin losing to? You could argue that two would have to be Ohio State and Nebraska, but is the third Michigan State or Penn State? I'm just curious...
Top RB Units: Wisconsin 2nd (behind LSU)
Top OL Units: Wisconsin 6th
Top LB Units: Wisconsin 5th
Athlon All-America Team
1st team: Montee Ball (RB), Ricky Wagner (OT)
3rd team: Travis Frederick (C), Chris Borland (LB), and Jared Abbrederis (PR)
* Time out - again, no Mike Taylor on any all-American team? Umm, ya, that's a bit surprising considering he's 1/2 the reason the Badgers unit ranks in the top 5 nationally. I'm sorry but Taylor is better than Dion Bailey, Gerald Hodges, Arthur Brown, and Khaseem Greene (all on the 2nd & 3rd teams ahead of him). I can see competing with the likes of A.J. Klein (Iowa State), Manti Te'o (Notre Dame), Jarvis Jones (Georgia), and Chase Thomas (Stanford). But again, I'm biased, right?
Athlon Sports All-Big Ten Team
1st team: Montee Ball (RB), Jared Abbrederis (WR/PR), Travis Frederick (C), Ricky Wagner (OL), Chris Borland (LB), Mike Taylor (LB)
2nd team: Jacob Pederson (TE)
Notes & Musings:
- Wisconsin RB Montee Ball is 2nd on the Athlon Sports Heisman Contenders list. Only Matt Barkley ranks higher. This is the highest we've seen from any of the magazines out so far. I'd agree with this because since about 2000 there seems to be a rather unhealthy national media obsession with all things Men of Troy.
- One of the more curious things in the magazine is that they have Michigan State's LB unit ranked 3rd nationally and ahead of Wisconsin as a result in the Big Ten. However, the top two linebackers on the unit aren't anywhere to be found on the all-American teams and are just 2nd team all-conference selections. I get that the Spartans return their entire linebacking corp, but how does 2/3's of your unit ranking below ours make any sense? Again I'm confused.
- Overall I'd say Athlon is one of my personal least favorite of the preview magazines as it leaves a lot to the imagination, I mean if you are going to put out record predictions why not show who you have that team winning and losing to? It's the least they could do. However, I would recommend picking up their Big Ten preview because that goes much more in depth and it has a really great article on Recruiting Rankings and if they matter.
- On that note, if you pick up the Big Ten preview you will also see that Wisconsin is predicted to play in the Capital One Bowl on New Years Day vs. Georgia. Now that would be an interesting battle for sure!
- Four of the Badgers Big Ten games (at Nebraska, vs. Michigan State, vs. Ohio State, and at Penn State) land on the Key Games list in the Big Ten magazine.
Yada, yada, yada we've heard all the big ten bull%^^* before fact is none of them can hang with the sec, and if any are named all american it will be because of pure bull$(*T hype from the bias media
so,, lets see,, then i suppose your logic would have to extend to the conclusion that basically all the first round draft picks in the nfl must also be from the sec.. of course! .., right??! NOT,, the sec is not the only conference with first rate echelon talent,, but it is the conference unequivocally with the most arrogant and ignorant fans by far!! that much is clear,, a whole lot of classless less than high level iq's with chracter to match!! And it will be a great and relishing time when the pendulum inevitably swings back to bcs champions form other than sec conferences, and it will be well deserved when the classier fans of those other conferences intentionally shovel back upon you all the arrogance and lowlife crass mentality that you are now so deserving of!! The wheel is coming around, and when it does may you shut up and eat it like you gave it out!!!
@EMoore7272 You can't be serious claiming a Big Ten media bias... Have you seen how far up the SEC's rear end the media is period? Go troll somewhere else.