Guaranteed wins for Big Ten

Ohio State and Penn State are already heeding Barry Alvarez’s advice. No FCS opponents are on the Buckeyes’ and Nittany Lions’ schedules this fall.

The same can’t be said for the other 12 teams.

Illinois
Guaranteed win comes against ... Youngstown State on Aug. 30
BTN won’t constantly replay this game unless ... new Youngstown State president Jim Tressel gets back on the sidelines with some of his Ohio State talent and hands Illinois its first loss against an FCS foe.

Indiana
Guaranteed win comes against ... Indiana State on Aug. 30
BTN won’t constantly replay this game unless ... Tom Crean and Kevin Wilson trade teams for a day, although Yogi Ferrell could make for a decent option quarterback against a Sycamores defense that yielded 431 points last year.

Iowa
Guaranteed win comes against ... Northern Iowa on Aug. 30
BTN won’t constantly replay this game unless ... Kirk Ferentz takes a page out of Paul Rhoads’ playbook and the Panthers beat another in-state FBS team like they did last year against Iowa State.

Maryland
Guaranteed win comes against ... James Madison on Aug. 30
BTN won’t constantly replay this game unless ... Terrapins supporters want to make a campaign to bring back Lefty Driesell, who coached at James Madison after the death of Len Bias rocked the Maryland basketball program.

Michigan
Guaranteed win comes against ... Appalachian State on Aug. 30
BTN won’t constantly replay this game unless ... the Mountaineers make their FBS debut a memorable one. Like that one time they visited the Big House in 2007. And left with a 34-32 victory. Remember that?

Michigan State
Guaranteed win comes against ... Jacksonville State on Aug. 29
BTN won’t constantly replay this game unless ... the Spartans’ defense left behind all of its tackling and playmaking ability in Pasadena against the Gamecocks, who advanced to the FCS quarterfinals last fall.

Minnesota
Guaranteed win comes against ... Eastern Illinois on Aug. 28
BTN won’t constantly replay this game unless ... Jimmy Garoppolo retains some more eligibility. And brings along some of his new teammates with the New England Patriots.

Nebraska
Guaranteed win comes against ... McNeese State on Sept. 6
BTN won’t constantly replay this game unless ... Bo Pelini upsets the cats of Lincoln, who swarm Memorial Stadium after an early field goal by the Cowboys, allowing the FCS playoff team from 2013 to leave with a shortened win.

Northwestern
Guaranteed win comes against ... Western Illinois on Sept. 20
BTN won’t constantly replay this game unless ... the Wildcats suddenly revert back to playing like they did in the Rick Venturi era more than three decades ago in Evanston. When they won exactly one game in three seasons.

Purdue
Guaranteed win comes against ... Southern Illinois on Sept. 20
BTN won’t constantly replay this game unless ... Darrell Hazell wants to only coach in West Lafayette for two seasons. The Salukis gave Illinois a scare last season. Don’t put it past Dale Lennon’s team to do the same to the Boilermakers.

Rutgers
Guaranteed win comes against ... Howard on Sept. 6
BTN won’t constantly replay this game unless ... Howard Griffith, Dana Howard, Desmond Howard and other big-time greats with the name Howard are in their prime. Oh, wait, wrong Howard.

Wisconsin
Guaranteed win comes against ... Western Illinois on Sept. 6
BTN won’t constantly replay this game unless ... Gary Andersen decides to have some fun in the Badgers’ first game at Camp Randall and lets fans handle all the play calls. With one caveat: They’re all trick plays.

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