Previewing the Big Ten spring meetings

The Big Ten doesn't hold its annual spring meetings at a swanky coastal resort, like the ACC or SEC, or at a desert Shangri-La, like the Pac-12 and Big 12. Practicality trumps luxury in the Big Ten, which will gather Monday through Wednesday at league headquarters in Rosemont, Illinois, a few hundred yards east of the tarmac at O'Hare International Airport.

Forget those swimming pools, oceanside golf courses and five-star restaurants that the other Power 5 leagues enjoy. The Big Ten shares a building with Fogo de Chao and has indoor skydiving nearby. What more do you need? The bravest souls -- looking at you, Barry Alvarez -- may attempt both.

While the Big Ten doesn't make the spring meetings bigger than they are -- football coaches haven't attended since 2011 and will skip again this year after gathering in February -- there are still key items that will be discussed this week. Athletic directors, senior woman administrators and faculty representatives will be on hand along with the men's basketball coaches.

"It's an extremely full agenda," one athletic director said. "It will be jam-packed."

Let's take a look.

  • Although the football coaches aren't attending, athletic directors will discuss several gridiron items, especially those in the comprehensive review of recruiting issues that will continue throughout the summer. An early signing period, changes to the recruiting calendar, size of recruiting-specific staff and, yes, satellite camps are all part of the review. The Big Ten supports the continuation of satellite camps, but recognizes limits on the number and locations of camps could come in 2017. This is a huge opportunity for the Big Ten to steer some recruiting items in its favor, like the possibility of official visits during the spring of a prospect's junior season.

  • Northwestern athletic director Jim Phillips, chair of the NCAA's Division I council, and Nebraska athletic director Shawn Eichorst, the Big Ten's representative to the NCAA's football oversight committee, will brief the group about the activities of both groups, viewed as critical to potential reform in football. The Division I council is reviewing athletes' time demands, the surge in transfers, health and safety, and other issues. Eichorst recently attended the American Football Coaches Board of Directors meetings in Arizona, which also included Nebraska coach Mike Riley and Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald. Phillips and Purdue athletic director Morgan Burke also will report on the recent Power 5 league meetings they attended in Texas.

  • Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany is expected to brief the athletic directors about the ongoing negotiations for a new media rights deal. Although the league always discusses its television agreements at the spring meetings, Delany has reportedly made significant headway toward a record agreement that will begin in the fall of 2017.

  • Several men's basketball topics are on the agenda with the coaches in attendance. There will be updates on the Gavitt Tipoff Games, the ACC-Big Ten Challenge and the 2017 Big Ten tournament in Washington, D.C., the first time the event will take place outside of the Midwest (Indianapolis or Chicago) since its inception in 1998. The group will recap the 2015-16 season and the rules/policy changes . Coaches will provide feedback on the new policy that allows players to declare for the draft but return to school by May 25 -- 10 days after the NBA combine -- if they don't hire an agent.

  • Realignment doesn't appear to be imminent for the Big Ten, but league officials could discuss the rumblings in the Big 12, which could opt to expand this summer. "You have to pay attention to what other conferences are doing," an athletic director said. "That seems to be pertinent information."

Athletic directors will speak to the media on Tuesday and Wednesday, and Delany will speak Wednesday at the conclusion of the meetings. Brian Bennett and I will be on hand to have it all covered for you.