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The Daily Gopher Fix 9.16.08

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I'm not sure who was worse this last Saturday.  The Pac 10 had some bad losses (see BYU's demolition of UCLA), but their best did beat the Big Ten's best.  The Bleacher Report is reporting that the Big Ten is bad, but this year is the nadir ("the lowest of the low, absolute zero"). 

This is a well thought out argument that the Big Ten can and will return to the top, in at least a small part because of the things being done at Minnesota. 

Minnesota looks to be on the road back to respectability after taking care of business in their first three games.  Brewster is already a better recruiter than Glen Mason, and taking steps on the field with the addition of a new stadium in 2009, fortunes are certainly up for the Gophers.

In addition to the Gophers improvement helping to bring more strength and depth to the conference.  The Big Ten is poised to return to power because it is loaded with tradition, money, nationalized recruiting, the Big Ten Network and money.

The Big Ten still has the largest and best college football stadiums in the country.  Beaver Stadium, the "Big House," and the "Horseshoe" rank third, fourth, and sixth, respectively, in a list of the world's largest stadiums.

The athletic budgets are still comparable to (or exceed) anything else in the country and the Big Ten has just as much pageantry and tradition to sell as the SEC, and more than the Pac-10 or Big XII.

I don't know how much ground the Big Ten can make up but one would think that if they can continue to expand their recruiting bases, generating income with the BTN and filling giagantic stadiums.  Then maybe they can return to the conversation of best conference in the land.

  • An early look at the FAU game from Fort Lauderdale's Sun-Sentinel gives us the obvious quote of the week.  "It's save to say the Owls will not sneak up on Minnesota this year."
  • The U of M has done a couple pieces on a your new freshmen on the Gopher basketball team.  Ralph Sampson has been warned about the inevitable winter and thinks even the stalker fans are "nice".
    On one occasion, a Gopher fan spotted Sampson leaving his dorm and walked and talked with him for nearly a mile.
    "He asked everything from how I like coming to the U, to what’s it like playing for Coach Smith," Sampson said about the inquisitive fan.
    Devoe Joseph and Colten Iverson are rooming together, although Iverson should probably pay a little more than half of the grocery bill.
    "We didn't know each other at all before but he's a great guy. We get along great. He's a real nice guy and real big too. He eats a lot. If I eat as much as him, I'll be (huge)," Joseph joked.
  • The next wave of fantasy sports is college football.  And rotoworld.com recognizes that Eric Decker is a fantasy stud.  I already know this as he is on my team!  The real story here is the horribly, awful title of "Decker does not hit the Deck vs. MSU."  I don't know what this even means, if anybody can figure it out please let me know.
  • You can start your 2010 wish list for Tubby Smith's recruits.  #1 on that list should be SF-Harrison Barnes from Ames, IowaTubby was seen watching Barnes in a local (to Ames) open gym.  Barnes is a top five junior who has offers from a few schools (Duke, Flor, Kan, Kent, UCLA, Tenn, USC, Ind, Ill, Iowa, ISU, Mary, Tex and MANY others).  Tubby will have his work cut out for him but this would be a huge "get" for the Gophers.