The championships have been won. The recruits have been signed. College football is finally winding down for the offseason. It can be a tough time for many people. Maybe you're one of those people. Now that Big Ten football is gone, you find yourself stuck in a rut. You have so much energy, so much drive, and nothing to do with it. We're here to help.
There are many aspects of the game that make Big Ten football great, but one of the things that makes it so special are the rivalry trophies. For various and sundry reasons, certain conference games have a prize associated with them. The Little Brown Jug. Paul Bunyan's Axe. The Illibuck. These relics have the magical ability to take an already exciting game of football and crank it up to eleven. Suddenly, you aren't just playing for the W; you're playing for the W and an awesome piece of hardware that you get to keep for at least a whole year. Think of the honor. The glory. The bragging rights!
Here at Land-Grant Holy Land, we want you, the reader, to experience life with as much Big Ten excitement as possible, so we've come up with a list of trophies that you can introduce into your own life and personal relationships to help you make it to that Sept. 7th kickoff against Virginia Tech. We may not call ourselves Legends and Leaders anymore, but that doesn't mean we aren't still out there changing the game.
The Golden Spoon
Some people are born with a silver spoon. When it comes to the Golden Spoon, though, you have to earn it. This crown jewel of cutlery represents the determination, hard work ethic, and unquenchable need for victory that defines the Big Ten, both on and off the field. And how does one earn such an illustrious honor? You must beat your friends in a chili eating contest. It has to be spicy, too. None of that mild Boston College ACC crap in here.
The Ugly Sweater
There is no competition like that between siblings. You were born to fight each other. You battle for everything: the front seat, the last of the Lucky Charms, your parents' love. Now, you can have something to show for it (since the psychological scars are invisible). The Ugly Sweater is the pride of any Big Ten family. There's no better way to show your school pride on a cool autumn day than to rock a good sweater. Show the world—and your brothers and sisters—how a true champion stays warm. How you win the Sweater will depend on you and your family. Siblings compete in different ways. Just go out there and show the world that you got all the best genes from your particular pool. Also, you'll look better than Illinois football while wearing it.
The party has been going all night. You're drunk. You're tired. If you want to drink from the Boot, though, you'll need to keep going. When everyone else has finally passed out, only then will you be able to stand tall (well, lean against the table tall) and raise the Boot in a toast to sweet, sweet victory.
The Big Brass Cup
You and your best friend go way back. You've done it all together. There remains but one question: Who's the better friend and person? If you want to drink the sweet waters of the Big Brass Cup, you're going to have to show that you're worthy. Go out there and show what a good friend you are. Do some favors. Send a nice card. Out-friend your BFF at every turn. Make them feel inadequate. They can't compete with how thoughtful you are. You're so good at gift-giving, you make Leslie Knope look bad. You crush everyone with your friendship. Then, and only then, will that beautiful Cup be yours.
The Red Ring of Death
Just be really good at Xbox. This one's pretty self-explanatory.
The Silver Cafeteria Lunch Tray
It's the end of the semester, but your meal plan is still somehow pretty full. Once the term ends, all that food disappears. This isn't AT&T; you don't get rollover. You have two options: You let all that already-paid-for food go to waste, or you spend the night in the nearest dining hall. How many cafeteria tater tots and chocolate muffins can you eat?
Jack Frost's Ice Pick
The cold winds of the Midwest don't just freeze our faces, but they also pierce our hearts. To win the mighty Ice Pick, you must go through the breakup of all breakups. Remember that movie with Vince Vaughn and Jennifer Aniston? You make that look like a couple of fourth graders splitting up on the playground after dating for all of recess. This ain't the sunny SEC, folks. This is the Big Ten, and Jack Frost will only bestow his powerful Ice Pick upon those who have felt the cold, searing blast of a broken heart. Indiana football has dominated the Ice Pick for the last twenty years or so.
If you want to win it all, it's simple. Go out there and show the world that you're the best, no matter what they say. Hit them hard, and take home the glory, because in the Big Ten and in life, there is One True Champion.