The Big Ten football season comes to a close this weekend with a full slate of exciting rivalry games. Four of the conference’s historic trophies will be on the line and the only non-trophy game will be the annual showdown between Ohio State and Michigan.”This is a great week for college football,” Northwestern head coach Randy Walker said. “There are a lot of great rivalries, especially in the Big Ten.”Northwestern travels to Champaign to face Illinois and compete for the Sweet Sioux Tomahawk Trophy. The Wildcats are looking to beat the Illini for the third year in a row.Iowa hosts Minnesota in a battle for the Floyd of Rosedale trophy.”It’s one of the great things we have going in our conference,” Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz said. “It makes these games more interesting.”Purdue starts their “bucket week” preparation as they will travel to Indiana to play for the Old Oaken Bucket.”It’s exciting, it’s a lot of fun and it’s something we look forward to every year,” Purdue head coach Joe Tiller said.Penn State and Michigan State will play for the Land Grant trophy, one of the newest trophies in the conference, in East Lansing. A little more is on the line for the Nittany Lions, though, as they can clinch the Big Ten title and an automatic berth in the BCS with a win.Showdown in Ann Arbor: Ohio State and Michigan meet in the Big House Saturday with huge bowl implications on the line.If Penn State loses at Michigan State, then the winner of the match-up in Ann Arbor will represent the Big Ten in the BCS. Ohio State can still win a share of the Big Ten title with a win if Penn State beats Michigan State.”This is the most exciting weekend in Big Ten football,” Ohio State coach Jim Tressel said. “Michigan will be a tremendous challenge for us.”Michigan head coach Lloyd Carr knows his team’s biggest task will be stopping Ohio State’s high-powered offense, something they failed to do in last year’s loss.”We’re looking forward to hosting an outstanding Ohio State team,” Carr said. “They have great balance [offensively] and any time you have great balance it makes you tougher to defend.”Carr also knows just how important a win against the Buckeyes would be.”If you win you can look at it as an excellent season,” Carr said. “If you lose it can look like a disappointing one.”Another Legend Calls it Quits: Kansas State head coach Bill Snyder announced his retirement Tuesday, sending shockwaves through the Big Ten coaching ranks. Prior to taking the top job in Manhattan, Kan., Snyder served as Iowa’s offensive coordinator from 1979 to 1988.”I’m sorry to see Bill go,” Penn State coach Joe Paterno said. “He’s been a great, great coach.”Snyder turned around one of the worst college football programs in history when he arrived in Manhattan in 1989. Before he took over, Kansas State was the only major college football program with over 500 losses and had only been to one bowl game.After his arrival, the Wildcats went to 11 straight bowl games starting in 1993. In 17 years Snyder compiled a record of 135-68-1.”What a great football coach,” Ferentz said. “We all thought he was crazy for going there, but he’s had a fantastic run.”
According to an ESPN report we’ll be in a pot that includes Faroe Island among others.Turkey, Slovenia, Norway, Israel, Bulgaria, Montenegro and Estonia are the other teams on the pot.Northern Ireland are in third pot along with Scotland and Wales are in the top spot with England.