What your view of sports and life would be if you had too many concussions
I have to admit; it has been a busy few weeks and I really haven’t been able to focus as much attention on the things in sports that drive me nuts as I would have like to. But some things just are not going to escape my radar. This past week, the Big Ten announced its long-awaited new division names, its new post season awards, and its new logo. Here’s a transcript of the tirade I had when I saw them for the first time.
“Oh my fucking God…look at this logo. Does Jim Delany have an autistic kid or something? That looks like a Smurf with a bladder infection pissed on some alphabet blocks. Seriously, I liked the Escher-ish qualities of the old one, what with its cleverly hidden “11.” Now, not only do I lose my shtick about calling the Big Ten “The Big
Eleven Ten,” now I have to pretend this new bullshit logo doesn’t try to suggest this league is headed for 16 members. I mean really, don’t tell me that “G” isn’t supposed to look like a “6,” or at least what a autistic kid being forced to work cheap for his dad thinks a “6” looks like…Paterno was right, this league intends to consume the known universe.”
Then there’s the names of the awards. Just get a load of these 18 new trophies. Each is named for at least two Big Ten football players of significance, but in that shitty “married couple whom you know isn’t going stay married” hyphenated bullshit sort of way. Here’s the list; you may want to wrap duct tape around your head to keep your skull from exploding from the sheer dumb-assery. Essentially anybody who played in the Big Ten and didn’t suck now has a trophy named after them.
From the Big Ten Network:
Championship Game Trophies
Stagg-Paterno Championship Trophy: Honors University of Chicago coach (1892-1932) Amos Alonzo Stagg and current Penn State coach Joe Paterno (1966-), the winningest major-college coach ever.
Grange-Griffin MVP: Honors legendary Illinois RB Harold “Red” Grange (1923-25) and Ohio State RB Archie Griffin (1972-75), the only two-time Heisman Trophy winner).
Ford-Kinnick Leadership Award: Honors former President Gerald R. Ford, a Michigan graduate and player (1932-34), and Iowa’s Nile Kinnick, the 1939 Heisman winner who was killed in a fighter-plane crash in World War II.
Dungy-Thompson Humanitarian Award: Honors Minnesota QB (1973-76), NFL coach and television commentator Tony Dungy and Indiana RB Anthony Thompson (1986-89), an administrator who also serves as a pastor at a Bloomington, Ind., church.
Graham-George Offensive Player of the Year: Honors Northwestern (1941-43) and NFL QB Otto Graham and Ohio State (1992-95) and NFL RB Eddie George, who won the Heisman in 1995
Nagurski-Woodson Defensive Player of the Year: Honors Bronko Nagurski, a three-time All-America and all-around athlete at Minnesota (1927-29) and Michigan (1995-97) and NFL CB Charles Woodson, the first primarily defensive player to win the Heisman Trophy in 1997).
Hayes-Schembechler Coach of the Year: Honors Woody Hayes, the Big Ten leader in conference wins (205) in 28 seasons as head coach (1951-78) at Ohio State, and his protege and former assistant, Bo Schembechler, who was 194-48-5 at Michigan from 1969-89.
Thompson-Randle El Freshman of the Year: Honors Minnesota (1986-89) and NFL RB Darrell Thompson who led the conference in rushing his first year and Indiana QB and NFL WR Antwaan Randle El, the first player in NCAA Division I to pass for 40 touchdowns and also rush for 40 in a career (1998-2001).
Rimington-Pace Offensive Lineman of the Year: Honors Nebraska (1979-82) and NFL OC Dave Rimington, who won the 1982 Outland and Lombardi awards, and Ohio State (1994-96) and NFL OT Orlando Pace, who was the Outland and Big Ten offensive player of the year awards in 1996.
Smith-Brown Defensive Lineman of the Year: Honors Michigan State (1964-66) and NFL DE “Bubba” Smith, a two-time All-Big Ten first-team selection, and Penn State (1996-99) and NFL DE Courtney Brown, the Big Ten’s defensive player of the year in 1999.
Griese-Brees Quarterback of the Year: Honors Purdue (1964-66) and NFL QB Bob Griese, a standout for the Boilermakers who won two Super Bowls with the Miami Dolphins, and Purdue (1997-200) and NFL QB Drew Brees, who led Purdue to its first Rose Bowl since 1967 and also guided the New Orleans Saints to the most recent Super Bowl title.
Ameche-Dayne Running Back of the Year: Honors Wisconsin (1951-54) and NFL FB Alan Ameche who won the Heisman Trophy in 1954 and Wisconsin (1996-99) and NFL RB Ron Dayne, who won the Heisman in 1999.
Tatum-Woodson Defensive Back of the Year: Honors Ohio State (1968-70) and NFL DB Jack Tatum, a consensus All-America in 1969 and ’70 who was among the top five vote-getters in the 1970 Heisman race, and Purdue (1983-86) and NFL DB Rod Woodson, a three-time All-Big Ten selection who twice won Super Bowls and was named to 11 Pro Bowls during his pro career.
Butkus-Fitzgerald Linebacker of the Year: Honors Illinois (1962-64) and NFL LB Dick Butkus, a two-time consensus All-America who went on to a Hall of Fame career with the Chicago Bears, and Northwestern (1993-96) LB Pat Fitzgerald, the first player to win two Bednarik and Nagurski awards (1995-96) and is now the head coach at his alma mater.
Richter-Howard Receiver of the Year: Honors Wisconsin (1960-62) and NFL all-around athlete Pat Richter, an All-America selection in 1962 who after playing eight years in the NFL also served his alma mater as athletic director, and Michigan (1989-91) and NFL WR Desmond Howard, who won the Heisman Trophy in 1991 and was the MVP of a Super Bowl.
Kwalick-Clark Tight End of the Year: Honors Penn State (1966-68) and NFL TE Ted Kwalick, a two-time All-America who also was a solid performer for the San Francisco 49ers, and Iowa (1999-2002) and NFL TE Dallas Clark, a former LB who made the move to TE before the 2001 season and ended up winning the Mackey Award as the nation’s best at the position in 2002.
Bakken-Andersen Kicker of the Year: Honors Wisconsin (1959-61) and NFL K Jim Bakken, a solid contributor for his hometown Badgers who played 17 seasons as a pro, and Michigan State (1978-81) and NFL K Morten Andersen, an All-Big Ten player who kicked what is still the Big Ten’s longest field goal (63 yards) and played in the NFL from 1982-2007.
Eddleman-Fields Punter of the Year: honors Thomas “Dike” Eddleman who was a three-sport star at Illinois (1946-48), starring in football and also being named the Big Ten’s MVP in basketball, and Michigan State (2003-2006) and current NFL P Brandon Fields, a first-team All-Big Ten selection in 2003, 2004 and 2006 now playing for the Miami Dolphins.
Can anybody live with the injustice that Reggie Roby was left off the punter award? I didn’t think so.
Then, last but not least, there is the whole bit about these idiotic division names. What the fuck is “Legend and Leaders” all about? Is this some sort of corporate management retreat where we break all the supervisors from accounts payable into some sort of bullshit team-building exercise; “Legends” against “Leaders” in some sort of quiz about properly dealing with with a problem co-worker? Fuck that. I realize the traditional geographic names don’t work, but almost anything would be better than this. I would have less of a problem with “Beavis and Butthead” or “Laurel and Hardy” than this shit. Seriously, this crap just screams of a focus group, and I really hate shit like that.
Legends Division: Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern
Leaders Division: Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, Wisconsin
So, I’m a Penn State guy, and am I supposed to buy that the team led by living legend Joe Paterno is NOT A FUCKING LEGEND? I shant go any further on this part of the rant as the best riff on this comes from Sports Squared:
Leaders and legends? Are we in some sort of children’s pee wee football league? Were “Big” and “Ten” already taken? I mean, is Ohio State pissed that they’re not considered legends? Or, hey Michigan, aren’t you supposed to be leaders or something? Isn’t that what you yell at me when you’re trying to sing your fight song?
Seriously, this is really an exercise in weak, Big Ten. In fact, I’m deliberately giving this article a weak ending hoping I can collect the Delany-Tim Brewster Award for Lame.
Funny that you mention that.
I was actually thinking there was nothing wrong with naming each division after the some of the more famous coaches in conference history. Maybe Hayes and whomever, but I guess they couldn’t very well name it the Paterno Division while he’s still coaching.
Look at the ACC. They have the Atlantic Division and the Coastal division. What does that even mean?
Nothing like validation…sweet, sweet validation…
I’m glad to know I”m not the only one who puts stuff out on the internet, only to hear about it the following day on PTI.
Nice work, brother.
When even the Big Ten’s own polling says that 90% of respondents hated the names, I’m not sure the PTI guys are parroting me 🙂