Kirk Ferentz chimes in on the Big Ten-SEC debate
Iowa was the lone bright spot in a pitiful postseason for the Big Ten last year, drubbing South Carolina in the Outback Bowl, 31-10.
While the league's showing as a whole (1-6) has added to the perception that the SEC is a far superior conference to the Big Ten, Hawkeyes coach Kirk Ferentz said that school of thought is "exaggerated."
"I was at Iowa for nine years back in the 80s," Ferentz said. "I think there was a marked difference at that time. I think there were a lot of gaps regionally around the country, and I think things have changed in the nine years I was out of Division I football.
"Our teams have been competitive, and when I say our teams, our conference teams have been competitive. I still go back to 2002, coming into this meeting the sky was clearly falling. That was the tenor of the meeting. At the end of the season, we had four teams in the top 13 with Ohio State winning the national championship."
The Big Ten actually won BCS games two of the next three years, but has gone 0-6 (and 0-2 in championship games) since.
Ferentz said, despite some obvious geographical differences, it's a matter of time before perceptions change again.
"It seems like the more we talk about things, the more we focus on things, the more pronounced they become," he said. "And I'm not sure they're always factual. It's usually a pretty fine line between winning and losing in a lot cases, and I think the balance of power tends to go around."