Actually, It Is Worse
Wait ... doesn't Purdue have more Big Ten basketball titles than anyone else? So, yeah, the NCAA title thing isn't great, but ... how bad can it be?
Oh. That bad. Just as a reminder, Purdue is a founding member of the conference, joining in 1896. The only other schools with continuous membership since then are Illinois, Minnesota, Northwestern and Wisconsin. Also, Michigan State didn't join until 1950, and of course Penn State joined 40 years after that. (Well, their teams joined a few years later, but that just makes it worse.)
And all of them are ahead of the Good Guys and Gals.
OK, OK, but some of this has to be dated, right? I mean, maybe someone won every baseball title from 1920 through 1940 or something like that. So if we look only at Burke-era numbers, it can't be that bad.
Before we go on, let me just say that the Big Tenteen site is TERRIBLE. There are rarely any direct links to championship results, half the ones that lead offsite are broken or moved, half the PDFs have outdated names or labels ... you can be sure that Jim Delany is using that TV money to put in a fourth in-ground pool on his sixth summer home, because it sure as hell isn't going into the site. (At least the PDFs are in a consistent format.)
You said it would be better.
I did not. I said it might be better. Purdue isn't even 100 titles behind Michigan, so there's that.
Those numbers don't seem quite right.
You want a volunteer job as a fact-checker? Anyway, yeah, I did type in all of these schools by hand, and I did put in Ohio Staet once, but I didn't reprint it. Just pretend that says 79. Also, I excluded three Penn State football titles. So they're close enough.
Also, those are still bad numbers. Is that from fielding so few teams?
Partly. It's also because there are no sports that Purdue dominates, like Wisconsin in track or Penn State in volleyball or Michigan in softball. 9 of the 24 come from women's basketball, but they've only won 2 of the last 8. One MBB tournament title, which means one championship in 19 seasons (thankfully, the three in a row prior to the conference tournament was the start of Burke's tenure, so they do count). Women's volleyball has the second-highest NACDA point total, but they haven't won a conference title since 1985. And women's golf has five, but none since 2010.
Two other things to note: Nebraska's not doing that bad, averaging a little over two titles per year. They're no Penn State, but that would still be enough to catch Purdue less than a decade into the next AD's run. Maryland, on the other hand ... they might catch Nebraska next season, and the Old Gold and Black not too long after that.
Rutgers. JIM DELANY!!1!11!1! Syracuse would have been a much better choice - might as well double up on the ACC. (However, they also won two NCAA titles, field hockey and men's cross country, in 2015-16. So ... at least with Rutgers, we can be sure Purdue will never be last.)
One more voice of reason in the back ...
Hey, I understand the idea behind the all-sports thing, but honestly, I only follow football and (men's) basketball. I know football sucks, but can we look just at those two sports?
Sure. Yes, the revenue sports draw the most attention. In the last post in this series, I'll run the numbers on some sports with head-to-head competition. Surely there's a level where we can say that Purdue teams at least meet Morgy's actual standard of middle-of-the-pack, right?