Brent Yarina, BTN.com Senior Editor, February 27, 2016
One of the many things we've noticed since BTN launched is that Big Ten fans enjoy a good shoe highlight.
Sounds odd, we know, but it's true.
It doesn't happen often, although it makes for entertaining television when a player loses a shoe in the middle of the action.
Does said player continue to play? Does said player do something highlight-worthy sans the shoe?
Northwestern's Jordan Ash came out of his shoe late in Northwestern's easy win vs. Rutgers on Saturday. He continued to play, for the record, but it was official Ted Valentine who made it into a highlight moment. Valentine, aware the shoe was on the court, picked it up and carried it in his hand as he followed the action down the other side of the court.
Watch it in the video above.
And relive some of the other great moments in recent Big Ten shoe history below.
The latest shoe highlight prior to Saturday afternoon was Purdue star A.J. Hammons' unforgettable rebound-with-shoe-in-hand play at Minnesota. It was something most basketball fans had never seen, and it was something that the Purdue bench absolutely enjoyed.
Back in December of this men's basketball season, Northwestern's Aaron Falzon lost one shoe on the offensive end of the court, ran back to play defense with one shoe on, Northwestern got the ball back, the ball finds Falzon, and he calmly knocks down a three-pointer – still with only one shoe on.
On Nov. 11, 2015, Maryland linebacker Jermaine Carter finished up a play against Indiana high-octane offense only to have shoe trouble. Instead of coming off the field to fix it, Carter rips the shoe off and tosses it to the sideline before taking his place on defense for the next play because … it's football.
In 2014 at Chicago's United Center, Illinois' Kendrick Nunn had the basketball but lost a shoe. He makes the pass to a teammate, tries to play with one shoe on, then retreats to his other shoe, grabs it, and puts it back on in time to get back on defense.
Ohio State fans will recall Buckeyes running back Ezekiel Elliott lost a shoe during the 2014 Big Ten Football Championship against Wisconsin in Indy. Elliott takes the hand-off and cuts up field before a Wisconsin defenders get a hand on his foot.
The Badger gets the shoe but not Elliott, who scampers down the field before being tackled at the 10-yard line. Fox football announcer Gus Johnson summed it up as only Johnson would: "Feet don't fail me now!"
And finally, here's an all-time favorite and a video clip that still draws fan views to this day.
On Jan. 13, 2013, the Iowa men's basketball team led Northwestern, 51-37, when a Northwestern's Alex Marcotullio lost a shoe on the court but kept playing defense. Iowa's Aaron White swooped in to pick up the shoe and tossed it to the sideline so that no one steps on it. Play, of course, continues. But watch the replay at the end of the clip below. The shoe almost drills Iowa head coach Fran McCaffery, who ducked out of the way.