Never has a conference been so overwhelmingly celebrated at the start of the season, and so completely dismissed at the end of the season as the Big Ten.

Every year it seems as if Ohio State only comes short or Penn State loses a big one. The mistake people are making is to utter disrespect for the conference once the national championships are definitely awarded to someone else after weeks of anticipating that “this could be the year.”

The truth is this: The Big Ten are quality football conferences that may receive too much attention and may not, and with consistency, live up to the pressure. Not important. Getting ready for the 2009 college football season, there are some big bets to make, and these are the top three football picks from the Big Ten conference that you should watch out for:

State of Michigan:

Last season, the Spartans recorded nine wins and four defeats. Running back Javon Ringer kept Sparta in the conference title mix throughout the season until a late defeat to rival Penn State crushed any and all hopes. Unfortunately for the Spartans, they lost their midfielders Brian Hoyer and Ringer, but hopes are high for an impending talent pool. Preseason Defender of the Year Greg Jones does a lot on the other side of the ball in midfield. Look for this team to do better than expected and to beat some teams that maybe shouldn’t.

Ohio State:

Coming from the team’s impressive 10-3 season standards, the Buckeyes were ultimately disappointed by their 2008-2009 performance – hardly their first. On more than one occasion they have achieved title games only for the big-time flop in front of a national audience. This troublesome history is the only thing keeping Ohio State from voting for confidence in the commanders of the Big Ten class this season. That, and they’ve effectively lost all of their big guns: James Laurinitis, Malcolm Jenkins, Brian Robiske, and Chris Wells. That’s not to say the Buckeyes don’t have talent. They’re just in a “years down” position, and it’ll take some good old-fashioned “against the rope” moxie to climb to the top of the pile.

Penn State:

Penn State will feature from the Rose Bowl and victory over rivals Ohio State. The Nittany Lions may have a young receiving corps, but they’ve got the All Big Ten back Evan Royster to carry some weight. Defensively, they returned Sean Lee, a defender of top caliber, to lead the defense. What they’re going to take is the same tenacity they had last year to reach the conference and possibly land another BCS appearance.

Whether you agree with these top three Big Ten football picks for the 2009 college football season or not, one thing is certain: there is money to be made in college football betting. However, before placing your bets on this season, keep in mind that you should choose a well-established and reputable sports book. Pay attention to reputation, comments and betting bonuses. Many services that allow you to bet on your soccer selections will offer betting bonuses as a courtesy to use their services. The betting bonus allows you to play longer with less risk, and you should take full advantage.

So pop the piggybanks and lather with # 1: football season is here again!