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Poll: Chicago Tribune asks for best Big Ten mascot

Our friends at the Chicago Tribune are running a fun poll that is asking fans to vote for the best Big Ten mascot. Vote here. With the recent addition of Maryland (Testudo) and Rutgers (Scarlet Knight), the Big Ten now features 11 mascots. As of Tuesday morning, it’s a two-mascot race, with Herky the Hawk garnering 51 percent of the votes and Brutus Buckeye 43 percent. [ MORE: Big Ten mascots visit D.C. | And Chicago, too! ] Illinois, Indiana and Michigan are the only schools without a mascot.

2014 Big Ten Media Days: Best of Day 1

Day one of Big Ten Media Days was filled with plenty of outstanding quotes, stories, and, of course, fashion. I made it a point to talk to as many coaches and players as possible today, while gathering any and all information I could get my hands on. Here is a breakdown of the best moments from day one of Big Ten media day. [ MORE: Get all of our Big Ten media day coverage ] Best moment(s): Reigning Big Ten Defensive Lineman of the Year Shilique Calhoun taking the mic and playing reporter. The Michigan State standout was on fire,

Delany points to B1G athletic, academic quality

CHICAGO — College sports have been awash in change in recent years. And change isn’t always easy or welcome. But, it’s inevitable for progress to be achieved. It’s an exciting time. And it’s also a time of challenge, as the collegiate model is on the precipice of forever being altered through remarkable NCAA reform—the biggest change of all in these turbulent times of lawsuits, union talk and expansion as leagues position themselves for the 21st Century. Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany has been a central figure in this coming new-world of collegiate athletics, helping shape tomorrow with other college leaders.

Photos: Big Ten teams tweet from media days

Big Ten media days kicked off Monday in Chicago, and every Big Ten school covered the day on Twitter, among other social media sites. See a couple tweets from each school in this post. ILLINOIS Triple view of #Illini TE Jon Davis (@JD3_ILLI) with @BigTenNetwork at #B1GMediaDay pic.twitter.com/0nmfR056P2 — Illinois Football (@IlliniFootball) July 28, 2014 The #B1GMediaDay grind continues for @coachbeckman. #illini #B1G pic.twitter.com/dYnNapNolX — Illinois Football (@IlliniFootball) July 28, 2014 INDIANA #B1GMediaDay Press Conference time for @IUCoachWilson #IUFBinCHI #GoIU pic.twitter.com/b055Dw1b6T — Indiana Football (@HoosierFootball) July 28, 2014 Deep dish pizza in Chicago? Check. #IUFBinCHI pic.twitter.com/VaAhcywpG7 — Indiana Football (@HoosierFootball)

Pat Fitzgerald clarifies Nebraska comments

Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald clarified comments he recently made about Nebraska fans. “It’s a pretty boring state, so they’re really excited to see Chicago,” Fitzgerald told the Chicago Tribune last week. “I talked to the state senator about putting state troopers out on I-80 (to block them.)” As you could image, those words stirred things up in Nebraska. Fitzgerald said he wasn’t trying to call-out Nebraska fans or take a shot at them. But he was bummed his own fans had allowed so many Cornhuskers fans to get tickets to Ryan Field when Nebraska came to Evanston in 2012. [MORE:

Ameer Abdullah, Melvin Gordon talk Big Ten's best RB

Ask anyone, and he or she will tell you the Big Ten is stacked at running back. Ask those same people, and they will say Nebraska’s Ameer Abdullah and Wisconsin’s Melvin Gordon are at the top of the deep talent pool. Who’s the best, though? “He is,” Abdullah said, pointing to Gordon. “Nah, come on!” Gordon responded. [ MORE: View the full 2013 Big Ten rushing yards leaders ] It’s a close race, let’s put it that way. Abdullah led the Big Ten in rushing yards (1,680) last season, just 81 yards ahead of Gordon. “It’s truly a blessing to

Kenny Bell never lost that bet or got rid of his hairdo

Don’t trust everything you see on Twitter. While the following, most likely, isn’t news to Nebraska fans, Kenny Bell never lost that bet or shaved his trademark hairdo. When asked about the haircut Monday at Big Ten media days in Chicago, Bell had a great laugh. “Come on, man, you fell for that, too?!” he said. Guilty. But so many others fell for his tweet, which got 374 retweets and 460 favorites, as well (here, here and here). “I threw it out there (on Twitter) to see what would happen,” Bell said. What happened is everyone thought the Big Ten

Big Ten fans get moving in our Chicago Big 10K

Thousands of Big Ten fans and runners came out for the third annual BTN Big 10K in Chicago on Saturday and ran along the city’s lakefront with a variety of Big Ten celebrities, mascots and cheerleaders. Have a look at a few videos from the event and come back Monday for more photos. If you have our free BTN2Go app, you can go back watch the finish line all over again right here. And don’t forget to bookmark BTNBig10k.com for next year’s event.    

Big Ten writers' 2014 preseason All-Big Ten Team

With Big Ten media days Monday and Tuesday in Chicago, BTN.com asked one writer from every school to help compose our 2014 preseason All-Big Ten Team. Each writer picked a first-team offense and defense, plus superlative winners, and the players who amassed the most overall votes, by position, made the team. See the team and how each writer voted in this post. [ MORE: Tom Dienhart’s media day questions | Which players are attending media days? ] 2014 BIG TEN WRITERS’ PRESEASON ALL-BIG TEN TEAM Editor’s note: First-team honorees are listed in bold, with their total votes, and unanimous selections

Who's the top celebrity fan for every B1G school?

Every college, it seems, has at least one well-known celebrity backer, whether it be on the gridiron, the hardwood, the diamond or the mat. But who are those figures in the Big Ten? I asked our Twitter followers that very question, and then came up with this list of the top celebrity fans for all 14 Big Ten schools. Here we go. Illinois: Bill Murray Born and raised in Wilmette, Illinois, a northern suburb of Chicago, Murray is a huge Fighting Illini fan. In fact, Murray followed the 2005 Illini hoops team from the Chicago Regional to the national title