We'll take a break here from the 2010 OSU position group profiles for some less Buckeye-centric speculating involving the rest of the Big Ten. The full conference preview is still a couple of weeks away, but it's never too soon to start talking about the best players, the most interesting games, the top newcomers, or when the Michigan coach gets fired. And what better way to answer all but that last vexing question but by the time-honored Top Ten List? Below are four randomly-selected Big Ten Top Tens, along with some informative links, to help get you ready for the 2010 Big Ten season.---This year's version of "Top Ten Breakout Buckeyes" is on the drawing board for sometime in August, but we'll start here with some predictions of breakout seasons for some of the Bucks' Big Ten competitors.
Top Ten Non-OSU Breakout Players in the Big Ten - 2010Players you might not have heard of yet, but are about to. No seniors or true freshmen on the list....and in no particular order...Broderick Binns - DE - Iowa - July DUI won't helpWilliam Campbell - DT - Michigan - a big problem for opposing centersRobert Marve - QB - Purdue - better known than the others, first year in Big TenJ.J. Watt - DE - Wisconsin - a former walk-on who started in 2009Riley Reiff - OT - Iowa - the next great Iowa OT?Michael Mauti - LB - Penn State - missed 2009 with ACL surgeryMike Taylor - LB - Wisconsin - missed second half of 2009 with knee injuryTandon Doss - WR - Indiana - really broke out last year (77 rec. 962 yds) but few noticed.Mikel Leshoure - RB - Illinois - finished fast in 2009 for 6th in Big Ten in rushingJerel Worthy - DT - Michigan State - made some Freshman A-A teams in '09----Top Ten Non-Conference Games for Big Ten Teams - 2010in chronological order.....Purdue at Notre Dame - Sept. 4 - interesting if only because it's Brian Kelly's first game at NDConnecticut at Michigan - Sept. 4 - No gimme in the Big House for the openerIllinois vs. Missouri (St. Louis) - Sept. 4 - Because I promised you ten...and it's "The Arch Rivalry". Cute. U. of Miami at Ohio State - Sept 11 - 'Canes have long memories. - TCF PreviewIowa at Arizona - Sept. 11 - See early what Hawkeyes are made of.Penn State at Alabama - Sept. 11 - lots of history in this series.Michigan at Notre Dame - Sept. 11 - Winners can say "we're back!". Wolves didn't win a road game in 2009.Notre Dame at Michigan State - Sept. 18 - Spartans lost on a last-minute INT in a great game last year. USC at Minnesota - Sept. 18 - Gophers hosting a wounded Trojan program. Won't matter.Ohio University at Ohio State - Sept. 18 - An awful performance against the Bobcats in 2008 almost cost the Buckeyes the game. Just missed: Are you kidding? It was hard enough to come up with ten moderately compelling matchups (ND x 3). One of the worst years in memory for interesting non-con games in Big Ten. ----Top Ten NFL Draft Prospects in the Big Ten - 2010Ranked more in terms of NFL teams' normal priorities rather than dominance at their individual positions...1. Adrian Clayborn - DE - Iowa - after this play eveybody knew who he was.2. Cameron Heyward - DL - OSU - led the nation in tackles by a DL in '09. First-rounder.3. Gabe Carimi - OT - Wisconsin - NFL frame and feet...may be best OT in conference4. Greg Jones - LB - Michigan St. - everybody's All-American tackling machine from Moeller5. John Clay - RB - Wisconsin - size matters in the NFL... Clay already has an SI Cover.6. Stefen Wisniewski - OG - PSU - NFL bloodlines and versatility on interior7. Justin Boren - OG - OSU - got booed in Ann Arbor last year (who didn't?)8. Tyler Sash - S - Iowa - his fluky interception was part of Iowa's 2009 magic9. Ross Homan - LB - OSU - OSU's quiet leader is one of Big Ten's elite players10. Lance Kendricks - TE - Wisconsin - had career game against Miami in Champs BowlJust missed: Ryan Kerrigan, DE, Purdue; Jermale Hines, S, OSU; Evan Royster, RB, Penn State; Chimdi Chekwa, CB, OSU; ----Top Ten True Freshmen in the Big Ten - 2010Not based on who will make the earliest contribution....just the best long-term prospectsWilliam Gholston - DE/OLB - Michigan State - did someone really say "Bubba Smith"?Roderick Smith - RB - Ohio State - prototype big back could benefit from redshirt yearKhairi Fortt - LB - Penn State - one big reason PSU had the conference's top classDevin Gardner - QB Michigan - this may be stretching the limits of optimism a bit.Silas Redd - RB - Penn State - another reason Penn State recruits were #1 in Big TenAndrew Norwell - OT - Ohio State - some people say he just looks meanC.J. Fiedorowicz - TE - Iowa - committed to Illinois...then switchedCullen Christian - CB - Michigan - lots of detail, plus video hereRobert Bolden - QB - Penn State - lots of QB talent at PSU, zero experienceO.J. Ross - WR - Purdue - he's a bit small, at 5' 10", 175, but that's the Purdue moldJust missed: A.J. Derby, LB, Iowa; Corey Brown, WR, OSU; Jimmy Gjere, DT, Minn.; Mike Hull, LB, PSU----Now go to the boards, and tell me what I got wrong.---