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New Big Ten football alignment puts Maryland and Rutgers in East

April 28, 2013 at 4:02 PM   |   Comments

PARK RIDGE, Ill., April 28 (UPI) -- A 2014 football alignment announced by the Big Ten Conference Sunday will put newcomers Maryland and Rutgers into a new East Division.

Joining them will be Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State and Penn State.

The conference's new West Division will include Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Purdue and Wisconsin.

They will replace the current "Legends" and "Leaders" divisions, which remain for the 2013 season.

Those feature Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin in the Leaders, while Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska and Northwestern comprise the Legends.

Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany said the changes were made after "four months of study and deliberation" and a survey that showed fans preferred a geographic basis for the divisional alignment.

The new format will see each school play the other six schools in its division plus two teams from the other division in an eight-game schedule in 2014 and 2015.

The next year, each school will play three teams from the other division as part of a nine-game league slate.

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