Big Ten announces division and trophy names, new logos

by Andrew Baker

The Big Ten announced Monday the official names for its two football divisions – which were created to accommodate the addition of Nebraska to the conference next year – as well as a series of new conference logos and the names of 18 new conference trophies. The “Legends” division will consist of Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska and Northwestern. The “Leaders” division will consist of Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin. “‘Legends’ is a nod to our history and to the people associated with our schools who are widely recognized as legends – student-athletes, coaches, alumni and faculty,” conference commissioner Jim Delany said at a news conference Monday. “‘Leaders’ looks to the future as we remain committed to fostering leaders, the student-athletes who are encouraged to lead in their own way for the rest of their lives, in their families, in their communities and in their chosen professions. We’re proud of our many legends and even prouder of our member institutions that develop future leaders every day.” The trophies, also created in response to the conference’s expansion, will be named after noteworthy Big Ten alumni. The winners of the two divisions will face off for the Stagg-Paterno Championship Trophy, named after former University of Chicago head football coach Amos Alonzo Stagg and current Penn State coach Joe Paterno. The Dungy-Thompson Humanitarian Award was named after former Gopher and NFL coach Tony Dungy and Anthony Thompson, who played at Indiana. The Big Ten’s defensive player of the year will receive the Nagurski-Woodson trophy, named after legendary three-time All-American former Gopher Bronko Nagurski and former Michigan cornerback Charles Woodson. The 12-team, two-division setup will begin next year. Delany said the conference will continue to be known as the Big Ten, despite having 12 teams. The inagural conference championship game will be played at LucasOil Stadium in Indianapolis.