2015 NCAA Football: Ranking Big Ten Week One Games

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Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

We are still about two months away until the opening of the 2015 college football season. With more emphasis on a quality non-conference opponents, the first few weeks fo the season are less fluff and more substance than what we have seen in years past. This year is no different and the opening week for Big Ten teams provide us fans with some quality games to pay attention to.

Wisconsin Badgers
Wisconsin Badgers /

Wisconsin Badgers

What has become the norm in recent years is spreading out every single opening week game in the span of five days. This season is the same, with all 14 Big Ten teams playing a game on either Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday of Labor Day weekend. With that being the case however, there are only a few games that are being featured on the ESPN family of networks or even on primetime.

It was last season where the Wisconsin Badgers decided to take a giant leap and take on a formidable SEC opponent in the LSU Tigers. The Badgers played well for ¾ of the game, but blew a lead in the fourth quarter and fell to the Tigers 28-24. But it was that game that gave Badger fans hope that they could play with the big boys. This season, Wisconsin will play their second of three opening week games against the SEC as they take on the Alabama Crimson Tide. Next season Wisconsin will face LSU once again but this time it will be at Lambeau Field.

The first week of the season also features three head coaches getting a fresh start in the Big Ten. Paul Chryst takes over for Wisconsin after Gary Andersen took a step down for Oregon State, Mike Riley will be on the Nebraska sidelines to take a step up from Oregon State and Jim Harbaugh takes over the head coach gig for his alma mater Michigan after Brady Hoke could not get the team back to where it once was.

Even though the bottom tier games of the opening week for the Big Ten doesn’t bring much to the table, it’s the top half that really will give fans some excitement this Labor Day weekend. It will also be this week that gives the Big Ten a chance to prove to the rest of the country that this conference is back and ready to be one of the elite in college football.

Without further ado, let’s start the countdown.

Next: Breakdown of Tiers