116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
From Iowa’s point of view, consider the Big Ten’s upcoming power grab of UCLA and USC to be sweet revenge on the Pacific-12 Conference.
This is for those morose, long flights home in the wee, wee hours after the Hawkeyes lost Saturday night games at Arizona State in 2004 and Arizona in 2010 and Kirk Ferentz put an end to Western trips that aren’t bowls.
This is for Iowa losing its last four Rose Bowls to Pac-12 teams by an average of 21.5 points, with a 38-17 Orange Bowl loss to USC 20 years ago to boot.
This is for Stanford’s smart-alecky, disheveled marching band mocking the state of Iowa during halftime of the Hawkeyes’ most-recent Rose Bowl debacle. A fake cow wandered the field. The horror!
But before getting into the Big Ten going Hollywood, consider this: Iowa beat out Alabama to secure a commitment from a five-star offensive line recruit Thursday, and that has to share news space in Iowa with the Trojans and Bruins joining the Hawkeyes and Huskers.
Did Kadyn Proctor of Southeast Polk High get advance notice he could play conference games in the Rose Bowl and Los Angeles Coliseum instead of Starkville and Fayetteville?
The same Kevin Warren who barely cobbled together a Big Ten football season for his conference in 2020 is on the verge of making a conquest that predecessor Jim Delany only dreamed about.
Or, it’s not really happening and is just another thing superior life forms from another galaxy are foisting on us to see what we’ll believe.
The U.S. Supreme Court did what? A witness at the Jan. 6 committee hearings said what? The Big Ten is expanding where?
Not much could ever cause me to say this, but I’d like to see Bob Knight still coaching basketball at Indiana. Can you imagine the expletives pouring from him when faced with a midweek Big Ten late-night game at USC?
Keep in mind USC and UCLA don’t have men’s wrestling programs, and Nebraska is the only current Big Ten member with beach volleyball. So it won’t be a total immersion of southern California culture into the Big Ten, and vice versa.
The Iowa wrestling team let loose in L.A. for a weekend sure would have made a great reality show, though.
Like stories of more consequence that bombard us daily, USC and UCLA to the Big Ten is shocking, yet has been brewing in plain sight for a long time.
Super conferences were not to be denied. The Big Ten took Penn State. The SEC absorbed Arkansas and South Carolina. The Big Ten swiped Nebraska. The SEC nabbed Texas A&M and Missouri. The Big Ten added Maryland and Rutgers.
The SEC then threw a Superman punch last year when Texas and Oklahoma accepted invitations to join. So the Big Ten’s answer is a roundhouse kick, USC and UCLA.
The Big Ten and SEC created their own TV entities, yet keep collecting more and more cash from other networks. The money has been stacked to Mars, but the conferences want it extended to Jupiter.
Any sentimental types who thought major-college sports weren’t as professional as pro sports can snap out of it now. If you didn’t think the athletes were employees, it’s time for your cuckoo clock to wake you.
The Big Ten will tell us how USC and UCLA are perfect academic fits for its noble and grand group of higher-learning institutions. But this is like everything else these days, not the least bit pure and totally about power and greed.
The Big Ten wants to be the college athletics equivalent of Amazon or Apple. The Big Ten wants to be Big Oil.
It wasn’t enough just being wildly successful. It never is. Rich men want to be kings, and the Big Ten is going to be the Stupendous Sixteen, maybe the Titanic Twenty in time.
It was incredibly good fortune for the University of Iowa that it was positioned close enough to other major Midwest universities at the end of the 19th century during the origin of what became the Big Ten. Now? Go west, young man and woman.
Sing along to Randy Newman’s song, won’t you?
From the South Bay to the Valley
From the West Side to the East Side
Everybody's very happy
'Cause the sun is shining all the time
Looks like another perfect day
I love L.A. (we love it)
Comments: (319) 398-8440; email@example.com