On the eve of the Big Ten going 0-5 in New Year's Day bowls, Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany addresses those accusing the conference of Big Ten Fail, and defends the conference as he has done so many times before.
FROM THE DESK OF BIG TEN COMMISSIONER JIM DELANY
I would like to congratulate the opponents of the Big Ten conference for their outstanding performances today. In the spirit of competition and on behalf of the Big Ten I commend your competitive spirit, and thank you for participating in our sport's greatest spectacle, the Rose Bowl Game. Those other bowls are nice, too.
It is important to note that the Big Ten strives for excellence in all that we do. We strive to maintain high academic standards. We take great pride in fielding quality athletics teams. We seek to do all of these things in an environment promoting dignity, respect, and achievement without compromising our ideals.
I enjoy SEC football. The conference and its fans bring an excitement to the game like no other. It is like that of a child, an excitable child who might eat mucilage or hit his head frequently on clearly visible low-hanging objects. This excitement fuels rivalries and makes the SEC what it is.
The Big Ten also supports literacy efforts and stands against football-related child neglect deaths. Some conferences don't, but we believe in doing things the right way: honestly, and without ever paying for a player. The Big Ten is most especially against paying a player's father. This would not be tolerated in any league, but most especially in the Big Ten.
Money is not the most important thing in college athletics. As the uninformed clamor for a playoff threatens to warp the very fabric of college football itself, we should remember that we do this for so many other reasons—
WE INTERRUPT THIS BIG TEN CORRESPONDENCE FOR A MESSAGE FROM OUR SPONSORS.
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WE NOW RETURN TO A MESSAGE FROM JIM DELANY
As I was saying: money is not the most important thing in college athletics. The hallmarks of collegiate competition remain the same as they ever were. We believe in amateurism, academic excellence, and a commitment to the concept of the student-athlete. We do not believe in winning at all costs.
That is why we have created the "Value City Student Scholarly Pursuits in Excellence Trophy, Sponsored By Meijer's™ ." This trophy, presented during the Big Ten Awards Sponsored By Ro-Tel™ , will recognize the student-athletes who best exemplify the ideals of the conference.
The awards will be broadcast exclusively on the Big Ten Network™ . If your local cable provider does not carry the Big Ten network, call them and urge them to make the Big Ten Network™ a part of your basic sports package, and help us continue to champion the integrity of amateur athletics as only the Big Ten can.