The Big Ten football conference has been all about tradition. It’s perhaps the biggest selling point along with the increased level of play today. Trophies matter, rivalries are real and hilarious at the same time and conference football is best in October and November.
However, the modern nature of college football is changing a lot of things. One of the biggest changes is the tradition of when the Big Ten season starts. No change will be bigger than the one announced by the Indiana Hoosiers today.
IU will play host to Ohio State to kick off not only Big Ten play, but also the 2017 season…
? Thursday Night Football ?
? Thursday, Aug. 31
? #iufb vs. Ohio State
? Memorial Stadium
— Indiana Football (@HoosierFootball) December 13, 2016
Yes, the Big Ten will join the likes of the SEC and ACC and see conference football from start to finish for the 2017 season.
To say this is an oddity would be an understatement…after all, Indiana hasn’t opened a season against a Big Ten foe since 1982 (when this writer wasn’t even a year old). That’s how rare a season-opener featuring two Big Ten teams has been in the modern era of college football.
It is a move that also screams of genius on the part of both teams. After all, in a weekend that usually sees cupcake matchups galore, these two teams are likely to take center stage on the national landscape on the first day of the college football season.
Let’s just hope this isn’t a trend for the conference, unless it is Indiana doing the hosting on an annual basis. That would just be smart marketing for the Hoosiers football program, a program that could use any advantage it has.