I think this is another semantical issue. Saying a player wasn't "great" does not mean that you think he was bad.
Personally, I thought McBrayer was a good player, but I wouldn't call him great. to me, great means an All-Conference player or approaching that status.
And - there is nothing wrong with being a good B1G player.
when a program is winning 40% of its conference games, by my definition, that program does not have a lot of "great" players. And, if they do have a lot of "great" players, and they're still not winning, then the coaching staff is decidedly not "great."