Big Ten Media Days Football

Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis was the site for Big Ten Media Days on Thursday.

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With coaches and players taking hundreds of questions over six hours, there can be a lot to sift through at Big Ten Media Days. But no worries, we have you covered. Here are some notable, fun or eye-raising notes from Day 1 in Indianapolis.

'Sloganeering:' Nebraska coach Scott Frost is not a fan of preseason slogans.

In fact, Frost pulled a good one from Merriam-Webster Dictionary during his first media session Thursday: "Sloganeering."

"If players need me to motivate them with a slogan, then I probably don't have the right players," Nebraska's fourth-year coach said.

There is, however, a mantra at Maryland this year.

"No BCE," Terps coach Mike Locksley said. "No bitching, complaining or excuses."

Life or death: Jim Harbaugh is 47-18 at Michigan. That's pretty good.

But he hasn't beaten rival Ohio State. In fact, many of those clashes have been mismatches.

It wouldn't be Big Ten Media Days with the Michigan coach having to answer a question or two about those darn Buckeyes.

"We're going to do it or die trying," Harbaugh said of beating Ohio State.

That, of course, drew some "RIP Harbaugh" tweets from Ohio State fans on social media.

Talking vax: Vaccinations have been a common talking point at college football media day events across the nation. The Big Ten is no exception.

Penn State coach James Franklin said more than 70% of his team has been vaccinated.

"(Won't) be happy until it's 100 percent," he said.

Illinois coach Bret Bielema said all Illini players and coaches will be fully vaccinated before the start of fall camp.

Covering a lot of ground: Locksley's opening statement Thursday was so long (about 1,300 words, according to the transcript), that not one media member had a question for him when the Maryland coach opened for questions.

That's one way to keep things moving.

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Illinois: Tattoos.

First-year Illinois coach Bret Bielema is back in the Big Ten. He coached at Wisconsin before taking a job at Arkansas in 2013.

Truth be told, the Big Ten never left Bielema, who played college ball at Iowa.

"I got a Tiger Hawk tattoo when I was 19," he told reporters. "It was a great idea then. Not so much now."

Northwestern: Jim O'Neil.

He's the new defensive coordinator in Evanston, and he takes over for longtime DC Mike Hankwitz.

"You don't replace Mike Hankwitz," Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald said. "But Jim brings a new energy. He's committed to making this our defense."

Michigan: Cade McNamara.

Harbaugh said the junior will go into fall camp as the Wolverines' starting quarterback. He appeared in four games last year and made one start.

Minnesota: Bowling balls with what?

Gophers coach P.J. Fleck has 10 starters back on offense, and none more important than Mohamed Ibrahim, last year's Big Ten running back of the year.

"He's kind of like a bowling ball going downhill with razor blades on it," Fleck said. "I'm glad he's on our team."

Penn State: James Franklin.

The Penn State coach was asked about Texas and Oklahoma possibly joining the SEC.

"I've got some strong opinions, but I'm going to punt on this one," he told reporters. "I'm not sure if it's appropriate for me to share at this time."

Reach Clark Grell at 402-473-2639 or cgrell@journalstar.com. On Twitter at @LJSSportsGrell.

This article originally ran on journalstar.com.

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