From Our Editors
The Big Ten Conference: Just How Big Is It?
- It has more schools than its name indicates. The addition of Penn State in 1990 upped the conference’s membership to 11, with the Nittany Lions joining Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Northwestern, Ohio State, Purdue, and Wisconsin. Expansion continued in 2010 with the addition of Nebraska, and Maryland and Rutgers brought the total to 14 in 2014.
- It’s more than just football and basketball. The conference fields teams across 18 men’s and women’s sports, including track, gymnastics, and field and ice hockey.
- You could drive 1,300 miles and never leave Big Ten country. The conference stretches from New Brunswick, NJ (Rutgers) in the east all the way to Lincoln, NE (Nebraska) in the west.
- It helped define college sports as we know them. During the 1895 meeting that eventually formed the conference, school presidents restricted athletic participation to “full-time students who were not delinquent in their studies,” a definition that would help shape the future of intercollegiate sports.