Chicago, IL -- After the release of the BCS rankings on Sunday only included two Big Ten teams in the top twenty-five college football teams, with neither higher than twenty-second, Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany made a surprising announcement about the future of the conference.
"The Big Ten was not featured in the first set of BCS rankings because the Big Ten did not want to be featured in the BCS rankings," said Delany in a statement Wednesday morning. "Now that the Big Ten received cursory positions in the latest edition, nothing has changed.
"The Big Ten has decided to break off from the BCS and form its own championship system that greater reflects our sensibilities and tradition. This new system -- The Big Ten Championship System, or B1GCS -- will include the 12 membership institutions of the Big Ten and that's it. Nobody else. Not even the MAC.
"Maybe Notre Dame. If it wants to."
As for how the B1GCS would work, Delany told The Champaign Room he was glad we asked.
"I'm glad you asked," Delany told The Champaign Room. "Each member of the conference will play the other 11 teams once a season in an 11-game schedule. A twelfth game may be played in early September if desired, against a non-B1GCS opponent, though that game will not count in the B1GCS standings.
"The teams with the best record in their divisions will then face off in The B1GCS Championship Game Sponsored By Ro-Tel and Velveeta. This years game will be played in Indianapolis but it's possible the game could rotate throughout B1GCS country every season.
"Maybe even Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend. If Notre Dame wants to."
While the news caught many off guard, it's a change Big Ten coaches seem to be in favor of.
"I came to the Big Ten just for that kind of challenge. To be a champion," said Ohio State coach Urban Meyer. "I've been in the SEC and I've won the SEC. I've won BCS championships. I need a new challenge. Something that won't be easy, but not that hard, either. I promised my family.
"The B1GCS is just that."
Northwestern's Pat Fitzgerald seemed to like the idea as well.
"Go Cats! Go Cats go Cats go Cats goCatsgoCats GOCATSGOCATSGOCATS," yelled the coach into the other end of the phone for a solid five minutes before The Champaign Room finally hung up.
While the Big Ten's decision will surely be met with skepticism and maybe even outrage, Delany is sure it will be just what his conference needs.
"The Big Ten has never needed college football as much as college football needed the Big Ten. We'll prosper on our own.
"Though, seriously, Notre Dame, you have my number. Just call."