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What In The World Is Going On With The Big Ten?

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2012 Vans Warped Tour - Noblesville, IN Photo by Joey Foley/Getty Images

Tomorrow will be one month since the Big Ten made the decision to cancel fall sports. At some point some would hope the Big Ten Conference would make a public statement with actual constructive substance.

Instead, the Big Ten continues to issue statements that say nothing. It is impressive the Big Ten can string so many words along and accomplish the task of saying nothing.

For example, in response to political leaders from the Midwest, the Big Ten issues a statement like this:

Maybe I am alone, but that statement appears to insult the intelligence of every person reading it. Why even issue a statement if you are going to throw crap out like that?

Couldn’t they have just ignored the letter?

When you respond to something by using that person’s actual quotes and throwing the quote marks around it, it is kind of saying “see you idiot!” Well when it comes to public relations, a statement like that makes me think the Conference thinks we (the public and the media) are simply too stupid to understand.

To be clear, while I disagree, I actually understand why the Big Ten Conference made their decision. However, the actions by the Big Ten prior to and after the decision is embarrassing.

Some have said, “Who cares? The public reaction would have been the same regardless.”

I disagree for two reasons.

First, it appears the conference looked for reasons not to play. This is probably the most frustrating part for fans and members of the media. It seems the Big Ten Council of Presidents and Chancellors (COP/C) started with the default view of not having a football season regardless.

They did not even try to set up a system of parameters, protocols and benchmarks which would be required in order for there to be football. In fact, it appears that individual Big Ten Universities had to do it themselves. The COP/C had five months to get started on this task and it never happened.

It is true that University Presidents have more on their plate than college football. The academic side of these Universities are getting gutted.

That’s why you form a committee or task force to deal with that issue. In fact, they actually did form such a committee. Unfortunately, it came after the decision to cancel the fall football season.

If there is a will, then there is a way.

Second, the continued lack of communication and transparency has been sad. We have been over this many times. While it appears to be expected that the Big Ten would not believe the public is entitled to communication or transparency, I was surprised (to an extent) that the college football coaches in the conference haven’t been receiving much more communication than us.

I find it mind numbing to think that the head football coach at Penn State still doesn’t understand why the season was shut down in the first place nor has he gotten any communication about things going forward.

Franklin said in the interview that he doesn’t even exactly disagree with the decision. He just wants to be able to answer questions for his players and their families.

If I’m correct and the COP/C never intended to try and have football, then it was a huge mistake on their part. However, there is nothing they can do now to change that decision. They can only control their actions going forward.

Stop issuing statements that have no substance. Stop looking like a bureaucratic monolithic nightmare. Answer difficult questions and provide some guidance.