The Big Ten office announced the conference schedules for the 2013 and 2014 football seasons today, as approved by the Big Ten Directors of Athletics in March, culminating with the Big Ten Football Championship Games on December 7, 2013, and December 6, 2014 at a site to be determined.
The 2013 Big Ten season begins on Sept. 28, with a Legends Division matchup between Iowa and Minnesota and a Leaders Division contest between Ohio State and Wisconsin. The 2014 Big Ten campaign begins on Sept. 27, with a pair of cross-division games, including Michigan of the Legends Division playing at Indiana of the Leaders Division, and Minnesota of the Legends Division travelling to face Penn State of the Leaders Division. In both 2013 and 2014, the last nine weekends of Big Ten action will consist of four, five or six conference games, culminating with all 12 teams in action each of the final two weekends. The 2013 and 2014 football seasons are 14 weeks long, which means teams will play 12 games and each school will receive two bye dates during conference play.
For the Gophers, Purdue and Illinois rotate off the schedule in 2013 and 2014. Those two schools will be replaced on Minnesota's league slate by Indiana and Penn State. In 2013, the Gophers will travel to Indiana and host Penn State. Minnesota will then host the Hoosiers and travel to face the Nittany Lions in 2014. Minnesota's 2013 and 2014 Big Ten schedules are listed at the bottom of this release.
The Big Ten football division alignments include the Legends Division featuring Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska and Northwestern, and the Leaders Division featuring Illinois, Indiana, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin. Each school will play the other five schools within its division and will also face three teams from the other division, including one cross-division matchup guaranteed on an annual basis. The guaranteed cross-division matchups are Iowa-Purdue, Michigan-Ohio State, Michigan State-Indiana, Minnesota-Wisconsin, Nebraska-Penn State and Northwestern-Illinois.
The champions of the Legends Division and the Leaders Division will meet in the Big Ten Football Championship Game on the first Saturday of December, with the winner earning the Big Ten Championship and a chance to play in the Rose Bowl Game or Bowl Championship Series National Championship Game. The inaugural Big Ten Football Championship Game will be played in prime time on December 3, 2011, at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, while the second Big Ten Football Championship Game is scheduled for Dec. 1, 2012, at a site to be determined. FOX Sports will serve as the official broadcast partner of the 2011-16 Big Ten Football Championship Games.
Minnesota's 2013 Big Ten Schedule
Sept. 28 - Iowa
Oct. 5 - at Michigan
Oct. 12 - Bye
Oct. 19 - at Northwestern
Oct. 26 - Nebraska
Nov. 2 - at Indiana
Nov. 9 - Penn State
Nov. 16 - Bye
Nov. 23 - Wisconsin
Nov. 30 - at Michigan State
Minnesota's 2014 Big Ten Schedule
Sept. 27 - at Penn State
Oct. 4 - Bye
Oct. 11 - Northwestern
Oct. 18 - Michigan
Oct. 25 - Bye
Nov. 1 - at Nebraska
Nov. 8 - Indiana
Nov. 15 - at Iowa
Nov. 22 - at Wisconsin
Nov. 29 - Michigan State
Pro Football Hall of Fame: Bobby Bell
Bobby Bell won the Outland Award in 1962 and was named the Big Ten MVP and finished third in Heisman Trophy voting.
Taking A Look At TCF Bank Stadium Records
The Gophers start their eighth season at TCF Bank Stadium on Sept. 1 against Oregon State. Last year, Minnesota posted some impressive feats in that cracked the stadium record books.
Road Game Tickets On Sale Now
Minnesota road game tickets are now on sale for contests at Penn State, Maryland, Illinois, Nebraska and Wisconsin.