Happy summer. At 12:16 PM Central Time, the sun will reach it's highest point in the sky in the northern hemisphere and summer will officially begin. It also means that there are 74 days until kick off. As excited as we are for that, there are still 10 more days until Nebraska is officially a member of the Big Ten conference.
Some people love math, others hate it. If you made it through college, you had to deal with it for at least 15 years. Whether or not you survived calculus or barely made it through intermediate arithmetic, you should be smart enough to realize that 12 does not equate to 10.
And so after last years conference realignment, we were stuck with a paradox. The Big XII has 10 schools and the B1G has 12 schools and both conferences are keeping the names. It's seems that in every story you read about Nebraska moving to the B1G, the author always has to bring up this fact. It gets really annoying to read. We get it, the numbers are wrong. Let it go already.Both the B1G and Big XII decided to keep their names because of the brand associated with them. Everyone knows who the Big 10 and the Big 12 are. Those brands can be valuable. If you are traveling across the country on the interstate and your kid sees the golden arches towering high above at the next exit, they will realize that there is a McDonald's there and want to stop. You hear B1G, you think Midwest Football. Though most people would catch on to a conference name change (I.e. most people will understand that the PAC-12 use to be the PAC-10), it does mean something when you can say that the B1G has been around for a very long time.
As I was thumbing through today's Google results for "Nebraska Big Ten", I came across Adam Rittenberg's blog on ESPN.com. The title was Ohio and future Buckeyes dominate Big 33. Big 33!?! My God what has this world come to? Can you imagine a conference with 33 schools in it? That would be ridiculous. It would almost be like starting your own athletic association after dumping the NCAA. Ok, so that article wasn't actually about a conference with 33 schools, it was about the big game between Ohio's top prospects and Pennsylvania's top prospects.
According to the NCAA's website, there are 1091 schools in the NCAA. So maybe, we just need to change the name of the NCAA to the Big 1091 and then when we get number 1092, we can realize the folly of using numbers in organizational naming systems. It is what it is and branding is important. So for now, 10 does equal 12, if you are a member of the Big Ten conference.