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ESPN: Cousins, Wilson spark uplifting title game

Consider it an early Christmas gift for a league that could use some good tidings.

The inaugural Big Ten championship game allows the conference to put its best foot forward after a year where little went right.

A rough 2011 began, fittingly, on New Year's Day when the Big Ten went 0-5 in bowl games, including three double-digit losses to the dreaded SEC. It led many to call the day the worst in league history. While the label might be applicable to what happens on the field, the bad news for the Big Ten was only getting started.

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