Big Ten Makes A Big Fail

For those who think I unfairly bash the Big Ten, I beg you to explain this bonehead move. Today Jim Delany, arch-criminal in college football and commissioner of the Big Ten, announced three new changes to the league. First, they had finally decided on how to name their two new football divisions. Then they showed off the new logo. Then they announced several new Big Ten trophies for season’s end. Sounds epic, right? Wrong. Big time fail of epic proportions.

First of all, the new division names. Did they do Great Lakes and Great Plains? Nope. Nowhere close. I’m not making this up, the new division names are Legends and Leaders. Seriously. Legends and Leaders. That’s the most idiotic thing I have ever heard. Does no Big Ten school have a communications program that could run a 5 minutes focus group? Here’s what Jim Delany had to say about it:

“‘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. ‘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.”

Wow. Just…wow. So does anyone want to tell me what is so legendary about Northwestern football? And if Indiana, Purdue and Illinois are Leaders in the Big Ten football picture, then that is a scary thought for any Big Ten fan. This is by far the stupidest thing I have heard in a long, long time. Just stupid. It’s beyond stupid, it’s absolutely insane. It’s like no one took any thought into this in any way, shape or form. Commentators will swing at this all season long for years to come. This will be a running joke in all of college football. What a complete and utter disgrace.

But don’t worry, it get’s better. The new Big Ten logo should be great, right? I mean, plenty of graphic design departments in those legendary leading schools, right? Wrong. Outsourced to some international group that failed in the World Cup, this is what they came up with:

Wow. Just…wow. As you can’t clearly see at all, the I and G in Big form a 1 and a 0 to honor the original 10 members of the conference. That’s right, because you know keeping the conference name as Big Ten isn’t honorable mention enough, we have to embed a secret 10 into the name to make Penn State and Nebraska feel even more unwelcome. What else could make this logo worse? I know! How about a blindingly hideous blue! Sheesh, why not add a 13th member and then just make the I a 1 and the E a 3. That would have been killer! Whoever came up with this crap should be sacked. And whoever hired the morons who came up with it should sack those morons…followed by being sacked themselves.

At least the trophies are cool…sort of. Every trophy has two names attached to it as far as I can tell. How bogus is that? The Stagg-Paterno Trophy. The Smith-Brown defensive lineman of the year award, and the Kwalick-Clark tight end of the year award are just a few more gems. What a mouthful. And hello, Paterno is still coaching! Isn’t it a little weird if Michigan wins the trophy named after Penn State’s current coach? Especially if they beat that coach to win the trophy? Seems meaningless to me.

So yet again Jim Delany has proven utterly incompetent. This is an epic fail doomed for the history books. New division names and new logos to come in 2012, I guarantee it.