Big Ten Media Days are behind us and there is so much you can miss with all the comments and questions for each program. So we made it easier for you by compiling a list of the biggest quote to come from each head coach. Let’s get started with the runner ups in the Big Ten Championship with the Iowa Hawkeyes and Kirk Ferentz.
Kirk Ferentz, Iowa
“I think we’re in a really precarious place,” said Ferentz. “There’s just a lot of vagueness, a lot of uncertainty. We really don’t have a firm structure. We don’t have a basic set of operating rules. I don’t think anybody right now can really explain the NIL in detail, what you can and what you can’t do. I know you can’t entice recruits, but it sure seems like maybe that’s going on a little bit. There’s just a lack of overall clarity. We need some intervention, and then my bigger concern is: Who’s going to do it, right? Where’s it going to come from?”
Analysis: This seems to be a cross-country problem. No one knows what the rules are and more coaches are speaking up about it. How many coaches are breaking rules with or without knowing it? We will get answers, eventually.
Ryan Day, Ohio State
#OhioState head coach Ryan Day:— Lantern Sports (@LanternSports) July 27, 2022
"Maybe 11-2 with a Rose Bowl victory is a good year. It isn't at Ohio State. Our three goals are beat the team up north, win the Big Ten Championship, win the national championship." pic.twitter.com/ql29l3HYqa
Analysis: So basically, Ryan Day has never had a good year at Ohio State? They haven’t won a National Championship since he’s taken over. Seems like a fireable offense if you ask me...
Mel Tucker, Michigan State
“You know, it’s not very complicated,” Tucker said about how he builds his roster. “We embrace the portal. We’re going to build our team through the high school ranks. It’s very similar to what we did while I was in the NFL. You want to build through the draft. You complement or supplement your roster through free agency. So the high school ranks for us is the draft. The portal is free agency.”
Analysis: This exact mentality is what I would love for the Wolverines to adopt. You can read my thoughts on that here.
Greg Schiano, Rutgers
Greg Schiano on the Big Ten vs SEC dynamic. "We’re in a race with the SEC. We have to make sure that we and they are racing back and forth." Said that the elevation of the league helps all the teams in the league to recruit better.— Pete Thamel (@PeteThamel) July 27, 2022
Analysis: The worst kept secret in college athletics was said out loud by Schiano here. Everyone is fearful of what the SEC is putting together and the Big Ten may be the only ones who can keep up after adding USC and UCLA.
James Franklin, Penn State
“To me, that’s the nature of college athletics and college football right now, that you’d better be willing to have discussions that maybe we haven’t had in the past,” Franklin said when asked about his quarterback, Sean Clifford, leading a team meeting with College Football Players Association reps. “There’s been more changes in college football over the last three years than probably the previous 25. Those are great discussions and dialogues.”
Analysis: Change is coming to college athletics and the more these coaches seem like they are embracing it, the better off they will be in recruiting, even if they disagree. Supporting his quarterback was a smart and calculated move.
Paul Chryst, Wisconsin
“I was asked earlier today, ‘How are you going to feel when you play your first conference game at SC?’ Just hope I’m f---ing still there.”
Analysis: Chryst’s job isn’t in jeopardy, and were not talking too far down the road (USC and UCLA join in 2024). It’s a funny comment, but it just seems kind of strange to me.
P.J. Fleck, Minnesota
#Gophers P.J. Fleck, who studies leadership/organizations, spent part of the offseason visiting Chick-fil-A HQ.— Adam Rittenberg (@ESPNRittenberg) July 26, 2022
"We not going to say we have similar cultures, but we both believe in culture. We both believe in people. And we both believe the people make the product even better."
Analysis: Comparing your program to a fast-food chain is...something. All his players better be saying “Thank you” and “My pleasure.”
Scott Frost, Nebraska
“We had a good enough team last year to do better than we did. That falls on me. It would be easy if it was one thing. It wasn’t. I think we need to have more of a killer instinct when we get in those close games.”
Analysis: Frost’s honesty is pleasant but if he doesn’t get things turned around a least a little bit this season he is long gone. This is the third season in a row his seat has been hot.
Jeff Brohm, Purdue
Purdue head coach Jeff Brohm today at Big Ten Football Media day said after a nine win season last year his Boilers are looking to take it to another level this year. (Courtesy: Big Ten Network) pic.twitter.com/54ZjX8Rkz7— Rick Semmler (@Rick_Sports10) July 28, 2022
Analysis: Purdue is shaping up to be a contender. They have the best quarterback in the West and have a favorable schedule. Read more of my thoughts on the Big Ten West here.
Mike Locksley, Maryland
“(Tualia Tagovailoa) is the most underrated player in the country”
Analysis: If you went around the country to die hard college football fans and asked them to name a player at the University of Maryland, almost all of them would say Tualia Tagovailoa. He isn’t underrated. If anything, it’s the opposite.
Bret Bielema, Illinois
Oct. 1, 2022: Bret Bielema returns to Wisconsin for the first time since 2012.— Andy Olson (@WCIA3Andy) July 27, 2022
Hear from the #Illini head coach on what it may feel like going back to Madison as an opponent: pic.twitter.com/bvzgLIrfdU
Analysis: This is the biggest headline of the season for the Illini. If Bielema and Illinois can go into Madison and pull off an upset, it could mean a turnaround for this program. It could also change opinions about the head coach who has gone 27-29 since leaving Wisconsin for Arkansas.
Pat Fitzgerald, Northwestern
The moderator begs reporters for one final question for Pat Fitzgerald at the podium. "That's what happens when you win three games," Fitz quips after silence.— Nicole Auerbach (@NicoleAuerbach) July 26, 2022
Analysis: Well he isn’t wrong. The Wildcats might have the least interesting and worst team in the conference this season. Their best player is an offensive lineman (Peter Skoronski), and it’s by a longshot. Hey, at least they have a really good class coming in 2023.
Tom Allen, Indiana
“The bottom line is things didn’t go the way we wanted them to go in 2021,” Allen said after a winless season in conference play. “When that’s the case, you do one of two things. You either feel sorry for yourself, or you sit there and do a thorough evaluation of everything that you do, which is what we began in January and had a chance to go through that process, make changes, add some new players to our team, add some new staff to our program, and then allow us to get back to work, and that’s what we’ve done.”
Analysis: Indiana was decimated with injuries last season. With a healthier team, maybe Allen and the Hoosiers can rebound in 2022. They might need to if Allen and others want to keep their jobs.
Jim Harbaugh, Michigan
Check out our story on everything Harbaugh had to say to stay up to date.