Can't Wait For Saturday | Big Ten about to add a bunch of millionaires to alumni base

Apr. 19—***

Hey, just realized in less than a week, the Big Ten can celebrate having the first pick in the NFL draft.

Sure, Caleb Williams used to play in the Pac-12, but that league is going the way of Blockbuster (ask your parents).

Because there are now 18 teams in the Bigger Ten, there will be a lot of cheering next weekend.

Newcomer Southern California has No. 1 and Ohio State receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. will soon follow. Don't get your hopes up Bears fans, he will be long gone before your second pick at No. 9.

Other Big Ten first-rounders include Washington receiver Rome Odunze, Michigan quarterback J.J. McCarthy, Oregon quarterback Bo Nix, Washington quarterback Michael Penix Jr., Penn State offensive lineman Olu Fashinu, Washington offensive lineman Troy Fautanu, UCLA defensive end Laiatu Latu, Illinois defensive tackle Johnny Newton, Oregon offensive lineman Jackson Powers-Johnson, Iowa cornerback Cooper DeJean and Penn State defensive end Chop Robinson.

That's 13 Big Ten guys in the first round. And a bunch more in the six rounds that follow. My guess is Illinois has a handful of players selected, with another four or five signing free agent deals.

The NFL once again considers Illinois a smart place to shop. Give a lot of credit for that to Bret Bielema and his assistants, who have shown the ability to make players better.

The SEC will be right behind the Big Ten with a dozen or so first-rounders. Alabama should have the most in the first round. Newcomers Texas and Oklahoma add to the SEC total.

Can't wait. Will I watch all seven rounds live? No. But I will tape everything and go from pick to pick starting with the second round.

The only way to enjoy the first round is in real time, You already know who is going first, Then watch as everyone's board gets scrambled when Team X makes a choice that sends Mel Kiper into a tizzy. Tons of fun.