CHICAGO — Urban Meyer had better enter the Big Ten football media room Wednesday with a barber-quality shave, spit-shined shoes and nary a hair out of place.
A head-to-toe inspection awaits the Ohio State coach for all that has gone on in his program since we last met.
The spotlight already was pointed in the Buckeyes' direction.
They went 12-0 in Meyer's first season, but were banned from postseason play for previous NCAA issues. They are close to a unanimous pick to win the Big Ten this season. And they have legitimate candidates for several national individual awards.
Now, far less positive scrutiny awaits.
Police reports from across the Midwest this week included the names of four players, including No. 1 running back Carlos Hyde and All-America cornerback Bradley Roby, who is my pick as the best player at any position in the Big Ten.
Lump that on top of the murder investigation involving former Florida star and Meyer recruit Aaron Hernandez of the New England Patriots, and it will be interesting to see how the man I've heard other coaches refer to as “Dr. Slick” squirms through this conversation.
Meyer is really good at not letting anyone see him sweat. Good thing for him a cold front has moved through Chicago this week.
If time remains after doing Buckeye analysis, here are some storylines to watch during the two-day talkfest at the Hilton Chicago:
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Ľ Will anyone notice when Nebraska walks in?
Two years ago upon entering the Big Ten, the Huskers rightfully were the stars of the show.
Then came a third-place finish in the Legends Division the first season followed by last season's annihilation by six-loss Wisconsin in the Big Ten championship game. Add in coach Bo Pelini's cold-shoulder media dealings and not many non-locals will rush to NU's interview spots.
It also doesn't help that Nebraska, which has long looked at 2013 as a big breakthrough season, finished second in the Legends media poll behind Michigan. When a team with a four-year starting quarterback gets picked behind one with a first-year starter, that shows a lack of respect for NU.
Maybe the bigger question is whether Husker Athletic Director Shawn Eichorst has taken note of where his football program and his coach fit in the national picture. To refresh memories, here are NU's final rankings in the AP Top 25 from 2002 to '12:
Unranked, 19th, unranked, 24th, unranked, unranked, unranked, 14th, 20th, 24th, 25th.
The buzz around Husker football — not just nationally but now in the conference, too — grows quieter by the season as the streaks without a conference title (1999) or a BCS bowl appearance (2001) get longer.
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Ľ Will Commissioner Jim Delany add to the recent critical bombardment of the NCAA?
Fellow commissioners from the Southeastern, Atlantic Coast and Big 12 Conferences at their media days have hammered the NCAA for its shortcomings while threatening to set up a separate division for the larger football-playing schools.
Delany, at the Big Ten meetings in May, said it would be “unhealthy” for the five power conferences to break away from the NCAA. Has he changed his mind over the summer? We'll know Wednesday whether he is still a supporter of NCAA President Mark Emmert.
Ľ Which of the two new coaches will get the most attention?
That's an easy one: Wisconsin's Gary Andersen in a landslide over Purdue's Darrell Hazell.
Andersen takes over a team that has won the Big Ten title for three straight seasons. No other FBS school has a run like that. And he inherited a big senior class that has as many as 10 to 12 NFL prospects.
Early reports on the Badgers buying in to Andersen's system are all positive. Consider Wisconsin the sleeper to claim another conference title.
Ľ How will the Big Ten Network's added coverage affect media days?
The more lights and cameras that are around, the worse the interviews are. So many of these events are staged and scripted that the fans get cheated out of a lot of honest evaluations that used to come from one-on-one or off-to-the-side interviews.
Don't stop reading us, though. We've already scouted out the hallways and back elevators. Our interview subjects can run, but they can't hide.