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Normally the Cleveland.com B1G Preseason Poll is a sign of excitement. Today? I look at it and shrugged.

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If a preseason poll falls in the forest and you forgot it was going to fall like usual did it really happen?

Big Ten Football Championship - Ohio State v Wisconsin Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The Cleveland.com Big Ten pre-season media poll is a tradition that heralds the coming season. Typically, it’s the moment when you really get excited for the fall (if you weren’t there already). Thanks to COVID, it’s a Friday news dump.

I’ll quickly summarize the results and then get to some thoughts. But let me state up top that this is the least meaningful or exciting pre-season poll ever. I literally forgot it was a thing that happened, because, well, nothing about this year is normal.

Big Ten West Predicted Finish

  1. Wisconsin - 221 points (19 first-place votes)
  2. Minnesota - 209.5 points (14 first-place votes)
  3. Iowa - 157 points
  4. Nebraska - 117 points
  5. Purdue - 105 points
  6. Northwestern - 87.5 points (1 first-place vote)
  7. Illinois - 55 points

Big Ten East Predicted Finish

  1. Ohio State - 237 points (33 first-place votes)
  2. Penn State - 204 points (1 first-place vote)
  3. Michigan - 169 points
  4. Indiana - 134 points
  5. Michigan State - 94 points
  6. Maryland - 76 points
  7. rutger - 38 points

B1G Championship Game Predictions

  • Ohio State over Wisconsin (19)
  • Ohio State over Minnesota (13)
  • Ohio State over Northwestern (1)
  • Penn State over Minnesota (1)

Preseason Offensive Player of the Year Predictions

  1. Justin Fields, Ohio State QB, 101 points (33 first-place votes)
  2. Rondale Moore, Purdue WR, 38 points
  3. Rashod Bateman, Minnesota WR, 33 points (1 first-place vote)
  4. Tanner Morgan, Minnesota QB, 16 points
  5. Journey Brown, Penn State RB, 4 points
  6. Pat Freiermuth, Penn State TE, 4 points
  7. Wyatt Davis, Ohio State OG, 2 points
  8. David Bell, Purdue WR, 1 point
  9. Alaric Jackson, Iowa OT, 1 point
  10. Josh Myers, Ohio State C, 1 point
  11. Chris Olave, Ohio State WR, 1 point
  12. Michael Penix, Indiana QB, 1 point
  13. Trey Sermon, Ohio State RB, 1 point

Preseason Offensive Player of the Year Predictions

The Good

  • Hooray for Bateman and Morgan. Too bad we’re probably not going to get to watch them play much (if at all).

The Bad

  • I cannot think of a less meaningful preseason poll in the history of meaningless preseason polls. These never matter (see last year’s preseason poll where a bunch of Big Ten media hopped on the Nebraska hype train because, well, rank incompetence comes to mind as a reason). But usually they serve to mark the moment. As a beacon of the coming excitement. Today? It’s just something the already gutted staff of Cleveland.com dropped on a Friday, almost as an afterthought.
  • Perhaps that’s because they were asking people to predict a season when we don’t even have a schedule yet? I mean, that’s a pretty good way to make this less consquential in a time when it’s already the least consequential thing out there.
  • Seriously, fuck COVID and anyone who doesn’t take it seriously. WEAR A MASK. WASH YOUR HANDS. SOCIALLY DISTANCE WHENEVER POSSIBLE. If you want a weird football season where you at least get to watch Rashod Bateman and Tanner Morgan do fun things, you better act like it.

The LOL

  • Someone picked Northwestern to win the West. It’s not going to happen because A) football probably isn’t happening and B) LOLNO.