Latest Big Ten Features News

Learn about NU's Purple 'Gotcha Ball Kid Program'

Evanston’s Lincoln Elementary School has partnered with Northwestern for the “Gotcha Ball Kid Program” that rewards students’ good behavior with opportunities to be a ball kid at Northwestern men’s and women’s basketball games. When Lincoln students display exceptional sportsmanship, teamwork and respect, they receive a special purple Northwestern “gotcha” from a teacher or school staff member.

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Next on Big Ten Elite: 1979 Minnesota hockey

On Friday night at 10:30 p.m. ET BTN airs “Big Ten Elite: 1979 Minnesota hockey” right after the Boston College-Minnesota men’s hockey game at 8 p.m. ET. Watch it to learn more about Minnesota coach Herb Brooks and one of the best college hockey teams ever to take the ice for Minnesota’s storied program.

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Watch feature on Michigan State's Sally Nogle

Michigan State’s Sally Nogle isn’t just any athletic trainer. She’s one of the few female head athletic trainers in college athletics. In the latest edition of “Big Ten Women’s Sports Report,” Kara Lentz profiled Nogle and finds out how she worked her way to the top of her field.

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Next on Big Ten Elite: 2000 Purdue football

Drew Brees is one of the most popular NFL quarterbacks of this generation. But Brees first made a name for himself during his record-setting college career at Purdue. On Saturday at 4 p.m. ET, “Big Ten Elite” profiles the 2000 Purdue football team. In this documentary program, we look back at all the unforgettable moments that led to the Boilermakers’ Big Ten Championship season, the program’s first since 1966.

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Video: Watch our inspirational Darien Moran feature

Darien Moran is a big-time Wisconsin football fan. He’s also a 14-year-old battling Histiocytosis, a rare autoimmune disease that causes tumors throughout his body. Moran got involved with Make-A-Wish, and his wish was to have his bedroom turned into a Wisconsin fan’s palace. The place is awesome. Even better: The Badgers did the makeover themselves. Watch the complete feature here. Plus, read Tom Dienhart’s feature on Moran and the Badgers.

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Fan makes a wish, Badgers make it come true

Here comes Darien Moran with his red Wisconsin “W” hat flipped backward over his closely cropped hair. Typical 14-year-old, bounding with energy at the start of a new day. Anything seems possible to a teen, even something as big as overcoming a rare disease. And that’s good because that’s exactly what Darien is doing.

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Feature: What makes Tom Windle so good?

When it comes to Big Ten pitchers, it doesn’t get much better than Minnesota’s Tom Windle. A first-team All-Big Ten honoree, the southpaw led the Big Ten in strikeouts and twirled the conference’s lone solo no-hitter. What makes Windle so tough to hit? “I’m confident that I can get every batter out,” he told BTN.

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Profile: Wisconsin softball

A profile of Wisconsin head softball coach Yvette Healy and her assistant Randy Schneider – who have transformed the Wisconsin offense into a high-powered unit.

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Video: Wildcats vs. Wolverines at Wrigley Field

As part of its partnership with the Chicago Cubs, the Northwestern baseball team hosted Michigan on Saturday night at Wrigley Field. The Wildcats shut out the Wolverines, 6-0, behind Luke Farrell’s three-hit complete game gem. Read the full NUSports.com recap and view the box score. Watch our feature on the game at Wrigley Field now.

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Alex Bentley & Maggie Lucas, teammates and friends

A look at the relationship between Penn State women’s basketball stars Alex Bentley and Maggie Lucas.

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'Football Pioneers' show honors Black History Month

BTN will air a 30-minute special Black History Month presentation called “Football Pioneers” at 9:30 p.m. ET Friday Hosted by Howard Griffith, the show features interviews with former Northwestern head coach Dennis Green,who was just the second African-American head coach in Division I history. We also talk with Sidney Williams, a former Wisconsin quarterback who was Big Ten’s first African-American starting quarterback, and current Purdue head coach Darrell Hazell.

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Feature: Rachel Banham's Comeback

A profile of Minnesota women’s basketball player Rachel Banham – whose stellar season almost never happened this year due to a blood clot she suffered this past summer.

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Penn State Women's Ice Hockey Feature

Kara Lentz takes a look at the Penn State women’s ice hockey team which is playing its first season as a varsity team. Watch the feature now as Lentz talks with head coach Josh Brandwene and various players.

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Title IX: Profiling Karen Dennis

As part of our celebration of the 40th anniversary of Title IX, BTN profile’s Ohio State track coach Karen Dennis.

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Profiling Purdue's Drey Mingo

A profile of Purdue’s Drey Mingo who has overcome serious illness and injury to return for a 6th year. Learn more about Sounds of Serenity, a charity Mingo has started for children who cannot afford hearing aids, by visiting http://www.teamsounds.net.

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Video: Tour Penn State's Pegula Ice Arena

You’ve heard of Happy Valley. Wait until you see Hockey Valley. Penn State’s new hockey home, Pegula Ice Arena, is a sight to behold. The new facility, which will open for the 2014 season, included an $80 million construction fee, and it’s pretty easy to see where all the money went. With a capacity of 6,000, Pegula will be the smallest arena in the Big Ten, however it was constructed to have the fans right on the ice. Watch Kara Lentz’s all-access tour of the new arena now.

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Penn State Women’s Basketball European Trip

The Penn State Lady Lions began their 2012-13 season with a 10-day foreign tour to France and Italy from August 13-23. The Lady Lions visited five cities in the two countries, while playing three games. Watch our video feature of the team and their travels.

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Title IX: Profiling Michigan's Marissa Pollick

Attorney Marissa Pollick is one of Michigan’s first female varsity letter winners and scholarship athletes, and she now works as a legal consultant for Title IX compliance in collegiate sports. Pollick grew up playing tennis against boys before she started playing for Michigan from 1974, just one year after the team was elevated to varsity status.

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Ice time: Go inside MSU's Hockey Women's Clinic

On our most recent episode of “The Big Ten Women’s Sports Report,” BTN’s Lisa Byington (@LisaByington) took to the ice at Michigan State as part of a program to introduce women to college hockey and hockey in general. Modeled after a similar program at Michigan State for football, any female hockey fan could sign up. For Byington’s hockey session, she was joined by a few familiar Michigan State faces. Watch the entire feature story in this post, and get more details on this program at MSUSpartans.com.

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'Journey' tells Cosgrove, Hitchens' emotional stories

On Wednesday night’s “The Journey 2012: Big Ten Football,” we featured Minnesota wide receiver Connor Cosgrove and Iowa linebacker Anthony Hitchens. Both players have emotional stories, as the former’s battling leukemia and the latter’s mentor recently needed a liver transplant. Watch a clip from Wednesday’s show that  tells the powerful story of each Big Ten personality now and catch a couple bonus clips in this post.

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Watch our Daydrion Taylor-Bob Stephenson feature

On Saturday’s pregame football TV show, BTN profiled two former Big Ten football players who will be forever linked after a collision in a 1997 football game between Michigan and Penn State. In the feature story, Michigan safety Daydrion Taylor and Penn State tight end Bob Stephenson discuss the hit and what life has been like for the past 15 years since then. Watch the full feature here and read their own words in this post.

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Beyond: Discussing the latest on player safety

On Wednesday night’s “Big Ten Football & Beyond,” our crew discussed player safety, with an emphasis on Daydrion Taylor’s vicious hit on Bob Stephenson 15 years ago. The play ended both players’ careers, and BTN analyst and sideline reporter Jon Jansen, who played in the 1997 Michigan-Penn State game, joined the panel to give his thoughts on the hit and its aftermath. Watch the video here.

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Q&A: Exploring Big Ten research on concussions

The subject of concussions and head injuries has become a white-hot topic at every level of football, and the Big Ten is doing its part to better understand the issues and make things more safe. On this Saturday’s “Big Ten Football Pregame Show,” at 11 a.m. ET, our TV crew explores this topic by observing the 15th anniversary of the Daydrion Taylor-Bob Stephenson collision in a 1997 game between Penn State and Michigan.

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Fifteen years later: Taylor's hit on Stephenson

The date was Nov. 8, 1997, otherwise known as the day Daydrion Taylor and Bob Stephenson’s lives forever changed. In the first quarter of a Michigan-Penn State game at Beaver Stadium, Taylor, a Michigan safety, delivered a bone-crushing hit on Stephenson, a Penn State tight end, near the sideline. The collision was so fierce it ended both players’ careers.

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Where were you for that Spartans-Badgers play?

When Michigan State beat Wisconsin on a long, last-second touchdown pass from Kirk Cousins to Keith Nichol last fall, the eyes of the rest of the conference were on that game. In a feature story that ran on our pregame TV show this morning, BTN talked to a number of Big Ten names who recall watching that incredible play on TV. We’ve posted the whole video here.

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