By Shawn Muller–

OK. Now it’s my turn!

There sure has been a lot of talk around Big Ten country in the past 24 hours about the new conference logo and football divisional names. Those of us who follow Big Ten athletics knew that, with the edition of the University of Nebraska back on June 11th, 2010, change was coming. Amidst fan speculation regarding the changes, months had passed without any news. Finally, on December 13th, 2010, six months of suspense for Big Ten Fans was finally going to come to an end with the revealing.

AND…that’s the logo? “Legends” and “Leaders” are the divisional names? Wow….

Thanks for nothing.

Anticipation and excitement turned into a massive disappointment for many. Some people just hate the logo design. Some people just hate the divisional names. A lot of people hate both.

As for myself, I would say I am in the middle.

Looking at the logo, I don’t see what people are getting so upset about. Now don’t get me wrong, I loved the old logo with the number eleven incorporated into the lettering. That was a brilliant design. People who feel letdown with the new design probably expected the number twelve to be incorporated just as eleven was when Penn State joined the conference. Like it or not, the Big Ten may not be done with future expansion. The updated logo assure that no changes will be needed anytime soon. If the conference decides to expand up to 16 teams, which is still a possibility down the road, the B1G in the logo could easily be altered to “B16 Ten”…..

Who Knows?

If you are one of the people complaining about the logo design…just relax. Sure, there is nothing flashy about it, but who cares? It’s a freaking logo! I understand that the design looks like something a fifth grader could have done in art class, but just accept it and move on.

The “sexiness” of a conferences’ logo has no bearing whatsoever on the legitimacy of said conference. What does the logo have to do with the product on the playing field? If I remember correctly, conference logo design isn’t a part of the BCS scoring system (not yet anyway). Your favorite university will still field a team every Saturday next fall and I can assure you, the players won’t play any worse because of the conference logo.

Though I don‘t necessarily dislike the conference logo, the divisional names are pretty bad.

The Big Ten had just over six full months to come up with a creative set of divisional names and the best they could do is “Leaders” and “Legends”? Wow! I am captivated by such brilliance. I guess a more simplistic approach like “East-West” or “X-O” division was not in the cards.

The Big Ten Conference is the oldest Division I athletic conference in the NCAA. There have been many great “Leaders” throughout its history and plenty of “Legends” have roamed the sidelines. I know that it was important for the heads of the Big Ten not to alienate some programs while seemingly honoring others. As a non-fan of Ohio State and Michigan, I would have a hard time being ok with “Bo-Woody” divisions (for example). If this is what the Big Ten was trying to avoid, then “Legends” and “Leaders” does the job.

Another set of names would have been even better.

“The Great Lakes-The Great Plains” , in my opinion, would have been the best decision regarding divisional names. Sure some teams located by the great lakes are in the division with teams all located in the great plains, but that is getting too technical. Every university is located in the two areas. What better way to honor the history of the Big Ten than to name the divisions after the areas where all of the schools are located. I guess this idea was too hard to understand for the Big Ten decision makers.

There are plenty of other names that would have been better that “Legends” and “Leaders”. I am sure you and I could come up with a great list in one day, let alone six months.

The months of waiting and wondering in regards to the announcements were all for nothing. Do all Big Ten fans a favor next time OK conference leaders: Have a fifth grader design a new logo and let a second grade class name the divisions like they would a class pet.

Seriously….what‘s the worst that could happen?

Do you agree with Shawn? Post your comments below.

steve muller Muller: Change For The Better...Or Worst? 

Shawn Muller

Shawn Muller has lived in Chicago for 7 years. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and just recently received his certificate in radio broadcasting in October of 2010. Sports have always been a passion of Shawn’s. In his free time, Shawn enjoys spending time with his wife Melissa and 3 year old daughter Ava, catching any live sporting event, and traveling. Check out his radio show, “Grab Some Bench with Muller and Bangser” at

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