Rarely do college football and animated cartoons find their way into the same conversation. (Unless, of course, you’re a stoned college student sitting in your dorm on Saturday night trying to decide what to watch on TV.) When it comes to college football, though, there is one conference that is almost universally loathed by everyone who is not a diehard fan of one the programs. That conference is the Big Ten. And if there is an equivalent in the world of adult programming (not the naked kind), it’s without question the overexposed, on-every-channel Family Guy. When you take a further look beneath the surface, you’ll notice the similarities between the programs of Jim Delaney’s baby and the characters of Seth MacFarlane’s program don’t just end with its association to the smug crowd:
Peter Griffin is Ohio State
Despite their sometimes moronic and “you’ve gotta be f*cking kidding me” behavior, Ohio State and Peter Griffin still manage to be the breadwinners in their respective households. No matter how many times Peter falls on his face, you can always count on him to get back on top… despite all the shit that comes up along the way. Plus, they’re both the first thing that comes to mind when the subject comes up.
Lois Griffin is Michigan
Strong, independent and everyone in the world seemingly wants to get with ’em in the sack. Unfortunately for everyone else, Michigan and Lois only seem to have eyes for Ohio State and Peter respectively. While Peter goes out and makes an ass of himself, you can always count on Lois to be a steady hand at home. Every now and then, though, something will happen that makes you question their judgement. Like this. And this.
Brian Griffin is Wisconsin
Brian is opinionated, liberal and a bit out of an outcast in his environment… much like the city of Madison is in the Midwest. As an example, his views on legalizing marijuana seem to be shared by the students of Wisconsin. Despite all that, Brian has proven to be a strong character that can carry the rest of the group when they are off their game. And, of course, he likes to party.
Stewie Griffin is Nebraska
Stewie and Nebraska are both the youngest member of their respective group. While Stewie is misunderstood because of his age, Nebraska seems to be a bit misunderstood because of its unfamiliarity within the league. Years ago, both Stewie and Nebraska were set on taking over the world. But these days it seems like every time that dream might become a reality they both somehow manage to piss it away.
Meg Griffin is Michigan State
Universally considered to be nothing but a shitty version of Lois, Meg is constantly fighting for respect amongst her peers both in her own home and in the outside world. Every time it seems like good things are finally about to happen to Meg, she gets smacked in the face by the reality that her road to the top will never be as easy as Lois’s.
Chris Griffin is Purdue
A smaller, less important version of Peter, Chris has never really been given much of a chance to truly shine on his own. The few times he has, though, he has made quite the name for himself and even gotten the best of the big guy. Then just like that he goes back to being an afterthought in the next episode and you realize it’s because too much of him is not entertaining television.
Herbert is Penn State
Sadly this is pretty-self explanatory and probably in bad taste. We know that Herbert is a veteran of the United States Army (one of the highest honors one can receive). That’s why it’s too bad his legacy will be tainted because of a perceived fondness of young boys.
Glen Quagmire is Iowa
Maybe it’s their hard partying persona or just the way the outside world always associates them for taking advantage of women. Whatever it is, you always know what you’re going to get with Quagmire just like you do with a Kirk Ferentz coached team. The results can sometimes be extraordinary, but at times it just seems old and overdone.
Joe Swanson is Minnesota
Back in the day, Joe Swanson was the alpha male of his peer group. And just like Minnesota’s days of winning national titles is nothing but an entry in a record book now, Joe’s ability to walk is too. Now he’s just a shell of his former self and mostly collects pity for what he is incapable of doing what he once was the best at.
Cleveland Brown is Indiana
Cleveland is not even on the show anymore. And you have to admit, that pretty much sums up most people’s feelings toward Indiana football. While the rest of the cast is fighting it out on-screen, Cleveland is too busy in his own world doing his own thing… just like the fans in Bloomington are too busy worrying about hoops season.
Tom Tucker is Northwestern
Every now and then, Tom Tucker will show up and embarrass one of the more high profile characters forcing you to acknowledge him as a presence you need to be cautious of. But while Tom Tucker and Northwestern are both consistent in their role, they are nothing more than journalistic mouthbreathers to the rest of the world.
Mort Goldman is Illinois
What do these two have in common besides the color orange? Well, they are both forgettable and just can’t seem to hang with the big boys. Mort seems lazy and showed questionable decision making when he stepped in a time machine to go back in time just like Illinois showed the same characteristics by sending the program back God knows how long by hanging on to Ron Zook for so many years.