A little light on the letters this week. The mailbag is always open, so please stay in touch!
John in Trenton, N.J., writes: It would have been good on your part in your grading of Rutgers to point out there is a positive opportunity for the offense future in that a new OC will be hired to replace (Dave) Brock. Perhaps this will help Rutgers turn its fortunes around. But, that would have required a nice ending to your story. I am so glad we are going to the B1G.
Andrea Adelson: Sorry to be Debbie Downer, John, but the grades are based on the 2012 season. And it is really hard to find silver linings with a unit that ranked No. 104 in the nation in total offense. Last I checked, Dave Brock coached every game in 2012. His departure means a time to look ahead to 2013, not to alter grades based on what could happen in the future. But hey, I am sure Brian and Adam are full of roses and daisies in Big Ten land.
Aaron H. in RU LA LA LAND writes: David Brock getting the Delaware HC job ... He's to blame for Gary Nova's regression. He did an awful job calling the games late in the year. It all started with the Kent State game in which he made no adjustments when it was apparent to everyone watching that Kent State was just dropping back on playing middle zone. They need to hire someone who can exploit other teams' weaknesses and adjust during the game. Also put his players in the best situation to succeed.
Adelson: I think Rutgers needs a fresh start, as I pointed out in my video Thursday. Given the talent this team has brought in at running back, quarterback and receiver, it is simply inexcusable to have an offense ranked No. 97 or worse in the nation for four consecutive years. Mind-boggling, really. The Scarlet Knights need somebody aggressive, and creative who -- as you suggest -- can put his players in the best possible situations. Brock did not do that with Nova.
Michael Medlin in Orlando writes: Your article about the Harbaugh influence in the BE was good. Just wanted to add a little known fact. Jim was the best man at Coach (Willie) Taggart's wedding. People don't realize just how close those two really are.
Adelson: Great factoid, Michael. I loved the anecdote in the Yahoo! Sports story about how Jim Harbaugh convinced Taggart to come to Western Kentucky. Lots of connections to that Harbaugh family.
JD in Orlando writes: Andrea, It seems to me that the ultimate goal of these conferences is to continue expansion until you get to an 18 or 20 team super conference, where the need for divisional conference crossover games would go away and the championship game would never be a regular-season rematch. Do you see this as the ultimate goal of this conference expansion?
Adelson: The scenario more people talk about is the 16-team superconference. I think the idea of an 18-/20-team superconference is unwieldy, especially when you start talking about dividing up television dollars among 20 teams. I'm not sure conferences really would go this route just to avoid a rematch in a championship game.
Jamie in Texas writes: A lot of media seem to have forwarded the premise that the MWC has overtaken the Big East in terms of financial viability and prominence now that Boise State and SDSU have backed out, but nobody really seems to back it up with numbers or named sources. I suspect Mike Aresco wasn't crazy about the "western footprint" deal because it only involved football and would eventually be a conference weakness. Given competitive balance, financial backing, applicable TV markets, etc., which conference do you truly think will give its programs a more lucrative package?
Adelson: That is a great question. I am still going to say the Big East will be able to deliver a better financial package because it has better markets in Florida and Texas. But it obviously hurts to lose its prominent programs and the basketball members that did provide a boost in negotiations. I am not going to speculate on what potential numbers are because that would be fruitless. It will be interesting to see how both these play out to see which one ends up with the "better deal." Remember, the Mountain West still has football programs like New Mexico and Wyoming. All of the incoming schools into the Big East are either in or near major metropolitan areas.