Brady Hoke: Big Ten headed for more expansion
TAMPA, Fla. -- The Big Ten expanded by one when it added Nebraska in 2011.
It announced this year that it will add Rutgers and Maryland, bringing conference membership to 14.
Michigan coach Brady Hoke suspects it won't end there.
"It's probably not finished," he said Thursday in Tampa during a segment with Michigan Radio.
Although Hoke offered no dissension toward expansion, he also didn't endorse it.
"Is it a positive? I think it's the world we live in right now," he said. "As coaches, we have no say in anything, I want you to know. The presidents make those decisions -- people way up in the food chain. But I doubt it's done."
Other highlights from Hoke's radio appearance:
Giving back to Armed Forces: Hoke said Michigan has purchased 1,000 Outback Bowl tickets and will distribute them to service men and women at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa. He often has expressed admiration for the Armed Forces, in particular the Navy after spending time near a base while coaching at San Diego State. He distributed tridents to his team last year, a symbol of the U.S. Navy SEALs, and had his seniors train with the SEALs in Southern California earlier this year.
On whether he'll play both Denard Robinson and Devin Gardner in some fashion: "I would think so. They're both on the trip."
Background on Dennis Norfleet's move from tailback to cornerback: "We had been talking about it, really, throughout the year in different stages. Dennis wasn't doing anything offensively, besides coming down and giving us a look on our (scout) team. We just felt that we were going to put the best players on the field. ... He has an intensity about him, he's a good athlete. He's not the biggest guy in the world, but he knows the game and has good instincts. He's improving every day."
No signs of rust, despite layovers: "I think our guys did so much on the days we weren't practicing, with seven-on-sevens, O-Line and D-line school, just the basic fundamentals that the seniors put them through. We really hit the ground running at practice. We had great tempo, great practices. We go physical all the time against each other. They've really done a nice job. Now it's just honing some things up."
On overpreparing: "You have so much time, I think some of us get bored. You have a lot of tape to watch, and you start trying to think, 'OK, we could do this, we could do that. But sometimes when you do that, it blows up in your face at the same time. Just like during the bye week, when you have two weeks. What are you trying to do? Then you want to do too much, or be too creative and all those things. You have to remember these are 18- to 22-year-olds who are going to be playing in front of 75,000 people who are going to be screaming, yelling, all those kinds of things, and they have to make decisions. ... Sometimes, when you have all those things in there, it can really hurt you in the long run.
Associate athletic director Mike Vollmer also joined the show to detail Michigan's travel logistics. He said the team will move to its third Florida hotel on Monday, the night before the game, after already staying in Clearwater and downtown Tampa. He said the traveling party occupies about 240 rooms, and moves with between three and 11 buses, depending on the event.
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