Andy Staples, a reliable name in the biz if nothing else, has released his Post-Spring Top 25, listing Nebraska at #12. About the Huskers he states:
Welcome to the Big Ten, Cornhuskers. For your first conference game, you get to visit Camp Randall Stadium for a night game. For your second, you get to face an Ohio State team returning some of its best players from suspension......
Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/andy_staples/05/24/post-spring-top-25/index.html#ixzz1NIJSIM1v
Which, in a nutshell, explains why we shouldn't be ranked much higher than that going in preseason polls. The schedule is killer and it will be a fight to win the West Division (which reminds me, we're going to have a contest in the not too distant future to determine what we're going to call the Division names) no matter how well Tim Beck's new offense does.
There's only one Big Ten team ahead of Nebraska and that's the Ohio State Buckeyes. Ohio State is clearly the best all-around team in the conference right now, and it makes sense to rank them at #11, despite all the off-field problems swirling around the program. Let's be real, there's plenty of time to change the ranking before the season starts and Jim Tressel gets fired.
He ranks Michigan State ahead of Wisconsin, something that can be directly attributed to MSU having quarterback Kirk Cousins return this season, while the Badgers have to replace Scott Tolzien.
That's it for your Big Ten rankings - #11 Ohio State, #12 Nebraska, #14 Michigan State and #16 Wisconsin.
As far as our old counterparts in the Big 12 - things look pretty good: #1 Oklahoma, #6 Texas A&M, #7 Oklahoma State, and #17 Missouri - but no Texas. I'll believe Texas A&M and Oklahoma State when it happens.