Big Ten Can’t Dump ‘Legends’, ‘Leaders’ Soon Enough

Tuesday’s column from CBS Chicago

(CBS) From the get-go, the names fit like a small-sized helmet on an XL-sized head. Awkwardly. And now, it’s time for the Big Ten to send “Legends” and “Leaders” on their way. Mercifully.

In perhaps the best sports news of 2013 thus far, Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany on Monday revealed that his league is finally considering replacing its much-maligned division names. The only bad news is that any potential changes won’t come until 2014, although a decision could be made by June.

“It’s on the table,” Delany told

OK. So, let’s get the thing set.

As you may recall, following expansion, the Big Ten in December 2010 decided to confuse its fans – and the country – when it announced divisional names with meanings so unclear they might as well have been called “Enigmatic” and “Vague.”

As the criticism mounted, Delany tried to clarify the names, saying: “‘Legends’ is a nod to our history and to the people associated with our schools who are widely recognized as legends – student-athletes, coaches, alumni and faculty. ‘Leaders’ looks to the future as we remain committed to fostering leaders, the student-athletes who are encouraged to lead in their own way for the rest of their lives, in their families, in their communities and in their chosen professions.”

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