Answer: Ohio State, Penn State, Michigan.
What's the question? You make the call.
a) Who are the top three picks in the Big Ten's pre-season media poll? (The poll only goes three deep in an apparent effort to spare any schools the indignity of being picked low. It's sort of the collegiate version of kindergarten diplomas.)
b) Who are Illinois' first three Big Ten opponents?
c) Both of the above.
The correct answer is c). If the Illini can get off to a quick start, they could be in for a big year. If they struggle early, though, their character will be tested--once again.