PSU beat LSU on New Year's Day and solidified the fact that the Lions had a real quality season. However, it is now time to consider how the performance of the rest of the Big Ten performed during bowl season. The perception of the strength of a team's conference matters a lot. For example, should it not be perfectly clear who should play in the MNC the voters will try their best to put the team who played in the toughest conference into the title game.
All year the Big Ten has taken a beating over the perception that the Big Ten is down as a conference. Well, it is time again to take a look at the numbers and compare the conferences.
The Big Ten
The Big Ten had seven bowl-eligible teams; Iowa, Ohio St., PSU, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Northwestern, and Michigan St. PSU, Wisconsin, and Ohio State all won their bowl games while Minnesota, Northwestern, and Michigan St. lost. Which, by itself, is pretty interesting. Iowa's win makes it quite clear that the upper echelon teams in the B10 are damned good while the real weakness of the conference is in the second tier teams.
The B10 is sitting at 4-3, this certainly isn't the trumpeting of a return to being a great conference, however, it certainly shows that the conference isn't as terrible as everyone thinks.
The SEC got a spectacular 10 teams into post-season play. Right now, five teams were victorious and four teams lost with Alabama yet to play. This is certainly a good record but it isn't exactly setting the world on fire either.
The Pac-10 got seven teams into post-season play. The Pac-10 only managed to win two of their bowl games with five of the teams losing. Thus far, they are the worst of the BCS conferences. Welcome to the bottom of the pile. Only USC and UCLA managed to win their bowl games while Oregon St., Arizona, Stanford, Oregon, and Cal all lost.
The Big East
The Big East really surprised me. The Big East fielding six teams with four of them coming up victorious. Who knew?
Six teams got in from the ACC and the conference went 3-3.
So, the numbers tell us the conference rank as follows:
1. Big East
GO BIG TEN!