The monotonous tone of conference media days is one that many sports journalists show up for with apathy.
Answers to a bizillion questions that follow a Mad Libs-style narrative of “cliche-verb-cliche-noun-noun, ‘take it one day at a time’” are scribbled down to fill empty space between now and the promised land: fall camp. Let’s face it, you have to make your own fun during this stretch.
Last year, Dan Beebe strutted into the spotlight of the Big 12 media days to “The Natural.” Naturally, he was out of a job less than two months later.
With every Big Ten coach getting quizzed next week, we felt the necessity liven things up via their own intro music. As a reminder, we did go to the public for suggestions.
Tim Beckman, Illinois:
Dan Fogelberg. Illinois. Fitting for the new guy.
Beckman’s question: How do you get Nathan Scheelhaase and the offense to finally take off?
Bret Bielema, Wisconsin:
Dubstep. For Bielema, this somehow makes perfect sense.
Bielema’s question: With the departure of Russell Wilson, will your offense place more emphasis on Montee Ball and the power run game or do you believe you can continue the same trends as last season?
Mark Dantonio, Michigan State
David Lee Roth. Why? Mark thinks East Lansing is paradise. It’s a good fit for him and Michigan State.
Dantonio’s question: You lost a lot of experience on offense, but return the backbone of a great defense. How do you turn 2012 into a possible second Legends division title with the boys from Ann Arbor and Lincoln on your heels?
Pat Fitzgerald, Northwestern:
Sinatra, because why not?
Fitzgerald’s question: What does Kain Colter give the offense that you didn’t have before with Dan Persa?
Kirk Ferentz, Iowa:
After what Iowa fans have endured, Ferentz elicits numbness as he’s done just enough not to get fired. Maybe Peter from Office Space was onto something…
Ferentz’s question: James Vandenberg did well last year, but his performance didn’t lead to wins. With a thinner wide receiver corps and depleted defense, how can you turn this scenario into a better season than 2011?
Brady Hoke, Michigan:
Hail to the Victors, because Michigan Man…anyway…
Hoke’s question: You’re having a great year on the recruiting trail, Michigan’s considered one of the front runners to win the Big Ten and you have one of the top players in the nation. Does this add extra pressure to perform well this season or will you treat it like any other year?
Danny Hope, Purdue:
The theme from M.A.S.H., as Purdue has been okay, but the injury bug hasn’t helped.
Hope’s question: When are you finally going to bring Ross-Ade Stadium into the 21st century with lights?
Jerry Kill, Minnesota:
Prince, Purple Rain. (You have a better idea for Jerry Kill?)
Kill’s question: Can Minnesota be a bowl team when your offense showed that it was make or break with MarQueis Gray last year?
Urban Meyer, Ohio State:
Question for The Meyer: When you were part of ESPN’s College Gameday that one of the reasons you left Florida was because recruiting has become dirty. How would you characterize your recruiting style since taking over as head coach since you’ve been accused of the same?
Bill O’Brien, Penn State:
Philadelphia Freedom. Free from Brady, Belichick and the NFL assistant lockdown for his own gig, albeit it with some brutal circumstances.
O’Brien’s question: How will you overcome the distractions this year and turn it into a positive season (what else)?
Kevin Wilson, Indiana:
There’s no way back now for Wilson. It’s quickly becoming do or die time for him in Bloomington.
Wilson’s question: Even though Indiana became a better running team last year, you suffered some terrible losses to North Texas and Ball State. When your only win was against South Carolina State, what did 2011 teach you and what’s different in 2012?
Bo Pelini, Nebraska:
More than just a feeling about this season, no?
Bo’s question: Nebraska has been on the verge of becoming a national contender for the past few years. What do you believe needs to be done for the Huskers to finally get over the hump to compete for BCS bids and national titles on a regular basis?