The following is a statement put out by the Big Ten offices moments ago.
Park Ridge, Ill. – The Big Ten Conference today made several announcements that complete a series of decisions prompted by the upcoming addition of the University of Nebraska – Lincoln as the conference’s 12th member school. The conference revealed a new logo to be used for all sports beginning with the 2011-12 academic year and also unveiled names for its two football divisions and a list of names for 18 trophies to honor coaches, teams and student-athletes starting with the 2011 football season.
"When we announced football division alignments in September, other associated decisions had not yet been made. We wanted to take some time to listen, carefully consider, and make choices that would best honor our history and traditions, reflect our core values and characteristics, and tell our story," said Big Ten Commissioner James E. Delany. "We involved many thoughtful, dedicated professionals and we listened to many ideas from our member schools, alumni and fans."
The new Big Ten logo was developed by Michael Bierut and Michael Gericke of the international design firm Pentagram.
"The new Big Ten logo was developed to symbolize the conference’s future, as well as its rich heritage, strong tradition of competition, academic leadership, and passionate alumni," said Gericke. "Its contemporary collegiate lettering includes an embedded numeral ‘10’ in the word ‘BIG,’ which allows fans to see ‘BIG’ and ‘10’ in a single word. Memorable and distinctive, the new logo evolved from the previous logo’s use of negative space and is built on the conference’s iconic name, without reference to the number of member institutions."
The new logo also provides the flexibility of multiple versions which can be used horizontally, vertically and within new media.
"The new Big Ten logo provides a contemporary identifying mark unifying 12 outstanding institutions," said Delany. "It conveys some elements from the past while simultaneously introducing new features. We think the new logo is fun and has something for everyone."
The conference also announced today that its football divisions, starting with the 2011 season, will be "Legends" and "Leaders." A breakdown of the divisions is listed below:
LEGENDS: Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern
LEADERS: Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, 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. ‘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," said Delany. "We’re proud of our many legends and even prouder of our member institutions that develop future leaders every day."
Finally, the Big Ten announced the creation of 18 trophies to honor just a small sampling of the countless student-athletes and coaches who have contributed to the conference’s rich and storied history. Starting with the 2011 season, the Big Ten will honor its top football student-athletes with these newly named trophies.
"These trophies will honor our legends and leaders for generations to come," said Delany. "The names on these trophies are fitting tributes to the hundreds of thousands of student-athletes and coaches whose hard work and dedication have contributed to the legacy of the Big Ten Conference over the past 115 years."