Drew Thurman (1:29 pm)
Well the Buckeyes made out like bandits with the Big Ten Preseason Awards. Not only were the Buckeyes named the Big Ten Preseason favorite, Terrelle Pryor also took in the preseason Offensive Player of the Year honor. Both are actually a surprise, considering the fact the Big Ten is much more wide open than it has been in recent years.
I am sure that Penn State fans are a little displeased that no love was shown to them, considering they were the Big Ten's best team last year, but I understand the thinking there. They lost a lot in the trenches and have to show they have the experience to take the title with fresh faces in the secondary and at wide receiver. I think the Big Ten could be stolen from about anyone not named Purdue or Indiana, but naming Ohio State after our recent dominance isn't a bad move.
I am shocked however in Pryor's honor. Not only does the Big Ten rarely waste time giving such high praise to a sophomore, there are also other candidates that could have been named. The two big guns that Pryor passed are Daryll Clark of Penn State and Arrelious Benn of Illinois. I am sure bloggers and fans of both schools were a little surprised to say the least at the news. Quite honestly, I think either may have been a better choice. There is something to be said about giving such an honor to upperclassmen, especially to two guys who are coming off such solid seasons.
"It's a good reminder, from an individual standpoint, the respect they have for his ability," Tressel said. "It was a little bit of a surprise, but it's a neat thing."
Overall, I do understand what the Big Ten is doing. They realize the incredible marketing power they have in Pryor, and they are going to utilize that. Much like the SEC has made Tim Tebow into a media darling, the Big Ten would love to build Pryor into a superstar. That is a lot of pressure for a sophomore who will already have an entire team on his shoulders, but Pryor isn't exactly the sort of athlete the comes around everyday.