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The New Big Ten Could Make for Chaos in 2024

Updated: 6 days ago

Emeka Egbuka
© Barbara J. Perenic/Columbus Dispatch/USA TODAY NETWORK

The 2024 season brings many new faces and big changes to the Big Ten Conference. Thanks to the ever-evolving world that is college football the B1G has embraced change while moving away from tradition.


The Big Ten was the main force in ending the Pac-12 Conference after taking USC, UCLA, Oregon and Washington. They also made one of the biggest changes in recent history by moving away from divisions. This season will be the first time the two top overall teams in the conference will battle in the championship game.


With the number of changes made, the 2024 season could be a season of first-time scenarios playing out. Sometimes change is for the best while other times it could be the causes of chaos. The B1G has been a league of consistency over the years so a little madness might just be a good thing.

Big Ten chaos
© Joseph Cress/Iowa City Press-Citizen via Imagn Content Services, LLC

With the amount of uncertainty heading into the season here are five possible scenarios that could turn the B1G on its head and make for a little chaos in 2024.

Oregon Wins B1G in Year 1

Oregon heads to the B1G after somewhat of a disappointing last year in the Pac-12. Coach Dan Lanning had his Ducks in the Pac-12 championship, but instead of lifting the conference's last football championship trophy, Oregon lost to Washington for the second time on the season to finish with a 12-2 record.

Lanning has his team ready to compete with the best in the B1G. Oregon is loaded with talent on both sides of the ball but the biggest advantage they might have is at quarterback. Lanning hit the portal and grabbed Oklahoma starting QB Dillon Gabriel who last season as a member of the Sooners put up 30 touchdowns, 6 interceptions with 3,660 total yards in the air. Gabriel can also do it with his feet considering he had 93 carries for 373 yards and 12 touchdowns making him a legit duel-threat QB.


With Gabriel, Lanning might have the best QB in the BIG. Oregon added Gabriel to go along with playmakers like Evan Stewart, Tez Johnson and Jordan James to have the Ducks ready to take the B1G by storm.

Big Ten fans should have Oct. 12 circled in the calendar as Ohio State heads to Eugene, Ore. Last season Ohio State pulled one out in South Bend, Ind., this season they won't be so lucky. The Ducks will not only beat the Buckeyes at home they will beat the Buckeyes again in the rematch for the B1G championship. Two wins against the B1G's most dominant team over the past 20 years will prove the Ducks belong in the conference.

Ohio State Moves on From Ryan Day

Ohio State is coming off a disappointing 2023 season and for Day 2024 will be his last chance to get it right. The good news for Day is that Ohio State plays one of the weakest schedules in the country with only two challenging games—Oregon and Michigan. They also play Penn State but until James Franklin can prove he can beat Ohio State that will be a game the Buckeyes will win.


Ryan Day
© Adam Cairns/Columbus Dispatch/USA TODAY NETWORK

Oregon looks to be the biggest threat to OSU accomplishing their goals and they show it in Eugene. Last season Day went into South Bend and came out with a win where he declared how tough his team was. That’s just not the case just a year after Oregon proved to everyone they are ready for big leagues as the Ducks win this game.


The final nail in the coffin for Day will come in Columbus, Ohio, when Michigan comes to town. Day has lost three straight game to Michigan. An excuse has followed each loss and those excuses will no longer be tolerated. Day, with all the pressure on him to win “The Game,” will make a few critical mistakes that will cost OSU the win.


Day, with losses in his two biggest games, will be let go before the Buckeyes play in the first 12-team College Football Playoff.  The good news for Buckeye fans it doesn’t take OSU long to find Day’s replacement as they hire Mike Vrabel.   

Lincoln Riley Is Out at USC

USC is coming off a very disappointing season after going 8-5 in the last season of Pac-12. Now Riley’s Trojans head to the Big Ten with pressure at an all-time high in his third season with the Trojans.


Riley needs an impressive year to prove many of the naysayers wrong. He will look to do it with one of the toughest schedules in the conference. USC has games against LSU, Michigan, Wisconsin, Penn State and Notre Dame. This schedule doesn’t allow for too many weeks where USC can’t be at there best. 


Riley's Achilles heel seems to be his team's inability to play defense. Up until this point he has yet to show his team can get stops when needed, so until new defensive coordinator D’Anton Lynn proves they can, USC could have a worse year in 2024. 

In 2023 Riley had a Heisman Trophy winner in 2024 No. 1 NFL Draft pick Caleb Williams and still couldn’t win more than 8 games. USC will look to new quarterback Miller Moss who shined in the Holiday Bowl throwing for 372 yards and 6 touchdowns. The only problem is that Moss compiled those stats against a very bad defense in Louisville. Riley is going to find out fast the biggest difference in the B1G compared to the Pac-12 is the intensity of the defensive play.


No Williams, no defense and a B1G schedule—Riley's team goes 7-5 and he is let go right after the loss to Notre Dame. 

Big Ten Raids the ACC

Conference realignment has been the talk of college football for the past few years. Gone is the Pac-12, thanks to the B1G. Now it looks like they have here sights set on the Atlantic Coast Conference. The B1G, in this new era of super conferences, understands it has become an arms race and will look to add more teams sooner and then later. By being the aggressor, the B1G will apply more pressure on the Southeastern Conference to make its next move.


The B1G understands if you’re not first you're last and will add two ACC schools to the conference by the time Christmas hits. B1G Commissioner Tony Pettiti will announce that not only did the B1G take Florida State, but will also take Miami. Miami is the school most coveted by the B1G, thanks to Miami's academic fit inside the conference. By adding FSU along with Miami, the TV networks will get what they covet most—regular season marquee matchups.


With this announcement, the B1G would be pushing college football one step closer to a two-conference playoff system similar to the NFL. If the B1G made this move it would send the ACC into a panic with teams trying to find other conferences to join. The move could also affect the Big 12 Conference as the SEC could come calling to match the B1G latest move.

Penn State Finally Gets it Done

Penn State, under Franklin, has been a consistent pretender when it comes to competing for the B1G championship. Since Franklin took over the Nittany Lions program Penn State is 4-16 combined against Ohio State and Michigan. He is also just a mere 3-17 against top 10-ranked teams.

There is hope this year for Penn State, however. The Nittany Lions are the only team that is considered a contender for the B1G who are bringing back their starting quarterback from 2023. Ohio State and Oregon both found new starters in the transfer portal. Michigan on the other head decided to stay out of the portal and go with one of the guys already in Ann Arbor. Quarterback Drew Allar looked great at times last season and had 25 touchdowns and only 2 interceptions. The big problem for Allar is that his worst two games came against Ohio State and Michigan. In those contests he threw for a combined 28-of-64 with 2 TDs.


After the Michigan game, Franklin understood that something needed to be done and fired Mike Yurcich as offensive coordinator. Franklin hired Andy Kotelnicki to be his new OC at the start of December giving him time to work with Allar. If Kotelnicki can turn Allar into the first-round draft pick many thought, Penn State should be ready to finally live up to the preseason hype.


James Franklin

Penn State's season will ultimately come down to a three-game stretch from Oct. 12 to Nov.2 where they will play USC, Wisconsin and Ohio State. Franklin's team will beat both USC and Wisconsin before losing to Ohio State. Thanks to the elimination of divisions in the B1G, after OSU fails to beat both Oregon and Michigan, Penn State gets a spot in the B1G championship game where they upset Oregon.


Franklin finally gets another B1G championship and secures Penn State's first trip to the College Football Playoff. Penn State, by winning the B1G, would secure a first-round bye sending Oregon and Ohio State to play in the first round of the playoff.

Historic 2024 for B1G

The 2024 season is one of the most anticipated seasons in B1G history thanks to so many unknowns. The season will be filled with firsts and conference matchups never believed possible. Fans will need to relearn how to watch college football because one or two loses should no longer end your season. It is going to be a much different B1G season in 2024. Only time will tell if the changes made were for the best.


6 days ago

If Iowa could get a "average" offense, and their defense keeps being great like the last few years, Iowa could shake up the status quo.


7 days ago

So basically, you're calling for a Rutgers' B1G Championship.

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