Former Big Ten standouts Shane Conlan of Penn State and Dave Butz of Purdue each have been named part of the 2014 College Football Hall of Fame Class, the National Football Foundation and College Football Hall of Fame announced on Thursday. The 16 inductees were selected from the national ballot of 75 All-America players and six elite coaches from the Football Bowl Subdivision and the 87 players and 26 coaches from the divisional ranks.

A native of Frewsburg, N.Y, Conlan was instrumental in the Nittany Lions posting a 23-1 mark his last two seasons, capped by the 1986 National Championship. A senior co-captain in 1986, Conlan led Penn State to a stunning 14-10 win over No. 1 Miami (Fla.) in the 1987 Fiesta Bowl to capture Penn State's second national title in five seasons. Conlan capped his career by leading a superlative defensive effort in the 1987 Fiesta Bowl to earn the game's Most Valuable Defensive Player, recording eight tackles and two interceptions to lead Penn State past previously unbeaten Miami for the national title. A four-year letterman and a three-year starter, Conlan was a consensus first-team All-American in 1986. As a junior in 1985, Conlan was selected a first-team All-American by Newspaper Enterprise Association (NEA) and named a second-team All-American by UPI and Football News in 1985.

Butz, who played for head coach Bob DeMoss from 1970 to 1972, is the 15th Boilermaker (10 players and five coaches) to be chosen for college football's ultimate shrine. Butz is the fourth Purdue player to be elected in the last nine years, following quarterback Mike Phipps in 2006, quarterback Mark Herrmann in 2010 and halfback Otis Armstrong in 2012. Over the course of his collegiate career, the 6-foot-7, 280-pound Butz became widely regarded as the best defensive lineman in the country. He was a consensus All-American as a senior, the recipient of the Zipp Award as college football's outstanding player and a finalist for the Lombardi Award (presented to the best lineman or linebacker). His career statistics included 108 tackles, 21 tackles for loss and eight pass breakups. In 1987, Butz was chosen to Purdue's All-Time Team spanning its first 100 years of football, and he was inducted into the Purdue Intercollegiate Athletics Hall of Fame in 2004.

Butz, Conlan and the rest of the 2014 College Football Hall of Fame Class will be inducted together at the 57th NFF Annual Awards Dinner on Dec. 9, 2014, at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City. The inductees will also be honored at the National Hall of Fame Salute at the Allstate Sugar Bowl in New Orleans on Jan. 1, 2015, and they will be recognized at their respective collegiate institutions with on-campus salutes during the fall.

100 Days of the Big Ten Medal of Honor: Day 73

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Minnesota's Paul Giel (1954, Baseball/Football)
A two-sport standout, Giel won the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1954 after claiming All-America accolades as both a junior and a senior. A College Football Hall of Famer, Giel played professional baseball for six seasons and also spent two years in the military during the 1956 and 1957 seasons. He still ranks second in school history in career strikeouts (243), fifth in complete games (21) and seventh in ERA (2.16). On the gridiron, Giel finished in the top three in the Heisman Trophy voting in 1952 (third) and 1953 (second) and would later become Minnesota's director of athletics from 1971-88.
Michigan's Sierra Romero was named one of three finalists for the 13th Annual USA Softball Player of the Year Award on Wednesday.

Romero was also tabbed the Big Ten Player of the Year for the second straight season. During her sophomore campaign, Romero led the conference in batting average (.516), slugging percentage (.968), on-base percentage (.663), runs scored (32) and walks (27) in Big Ten games only.

Romero was named one of 10 finalists for the USA Softball National Player of the Year award on May 7. The winner will be announced on May 27 at the team only banquet just prior to the start of the NCAA Women's College World Series.

Romero and the Michigan Wolverines will appear in this weekend's Tallahassee Super Regional, and look to make their second straight trip to the WCWS.

The USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year award is voted on by coaching representatives from 11 Division I Conferences in the 15 ASA Regions as well as members of the media who consistently cover Division I Softball across the country, and previous Player of the Year recipients.

In The Polls

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All seven Big Ten women's rowing squads are ranked are receiving votes in the latest CRCA/USRowing Coaches poll, released on Wednesday. Ohio State tops the poll at No. 1, while Michigan joins the Buckeyes in the top 10 at No. 8. Indiana follows at No. 15, while Wisconsin sits at No. 16 and Michigan State rounds out the poll at No. 20. Iowa and Minnesota are receiving votes in the ranking.

For the complete poll, click here.

100 Days of the Big Ten Medal of Honor: Day 72

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Northwestern's Anucha Browne (1985, Basketball)
A 1985 recipient of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, Browne was twice named Big Ten Player of the Year during her career (1984-85). She is the Wildcats all-time leading scorer (2,307 points) and rebounder (951) and ranks third in blocks (174) and seventh in steals (196). Browne was named a first-team All-American in 1985 and was a three-time first-team All-Big Ten selection (1983-85). She set the NCAA record by scoring 30 or more points in six straight games. Browne was named to the Big Ten's All-Decade team in 1992 and was inducted into the Northwestern Athletics Hall of Fame in 1993. She currently works for the NCAA as the Vice President of Women's Basketball Championships.

In The Polls

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Three Big Ten Women's Outdoor Track & Field squads appear in the latest USTFCCCA poll, released on Tuesday. Penn State checks in at No. 16, while Michigan and Nebraska follow at No. 18 and No. 25, respectively.

For the complete poll, click here

In The Polls

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Four Big Ten Men's Outdoor Track & Field teams are ranked in the latest USTFCCCA poll, released on Tuesday. Wisconsin leads conference teams at No. 14 and is followed by No. 16 Penn State, No. 17 Illinois and No. 21 Nebraska.

For the complete poll, click here.  

100 Days of the Big Ten Medal of Honor: Day 71

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Michigan State's Brandon Eckerle (2011, Baseball)
As a senior in 2011, Eckerle helped guide the Spartans to their first Big Ten Championship since 1979 en route to winning the Big Ten Medal of Honor. A unanimous All-Big Ten selection, he set a single-season program record with 96 hits and was also named a finalist for the Senior CLASS Award. Eckerle was a three-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree, named an Academic All-American as a senior and completed his career as Michigan State's all-time leader in hits (261). He became just the second player in Spartan history to win both the Big Ten Medal of Honor and the school's Chester Brewer Leadership Award.
Ten Big Ten student-athletes were named to the watch list for the Rimington Trophy, presented annually to the best center in Division I football. Big Ten standouts appearing on the watch list are Indiana's Collin Rahrig, Iowa's Austin Blythe, Maryland's Sal Conaboy, Michigan State's Jack Allen, Minnesota's Tommy Olson, Nebraska's Mark Pelini, Northwestern's Brandon Vitabile, Purdue's Robert Kugler, Rutgers' Betim Bujari and Wisconsin's Dan Voltz. Dave Rimington, the award's namesake, was a consensus first-team All-America center at Nebraska in 1981 and 1982, during which time he became the John Outland Trophy's only double winner as the nation's finest college interior lineman. Six Big Ten standouts have earned the Rimington Trophy in Nebraska's Dominic Raiola in 2000, Ohio State's LeCharles Bentley in 2001, Michigan's David Baas in 2004 and David Molk in 2011, Minnesota's Greg Eslinger in 2005 and Penn State's A.Q. Shipley in 2008.

Big Ten Medal of Honor Mondays: Ohio State

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During the Big Ten's celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, the conference will be featuring "Medal of Honor Mondays" for 12 consecutive weeks, which will highlight a number of Medal of Honor winners from each school. This week, we feature Ohio State.

Aaron Craft (2014, basketball)
Craft will leave Ohio State as one of the most successful student-athletes of all-time in men's basketball. The Findlay, Ohio, native completed a decorated career with 119 wins, an average of nearly 30 victories per year. He led the Buckeyes to four NCAA tournaments, three "Sweet 16s," two "Elite Eights" and the 2012 Final Four. Individually, Craft is the all-time steals leader in Ohio State and Big Ten history with 337. Craft was equally, if not more accomplished, in the classroom. A three-time academic All-American, Ohio State's first three-time honoree and just the fourth in Big Ten history, Craft also was named the academic All-American of the year in Division I Men's Basketball, twice, one of just three to be so honored all-time. At the 2014 Final Four in Dallas, Craft was honored by the National Association of Basketball Coaches as the 2014 Defensive Player of the Year and is a 2014 Senior CLASS Award First Team All-American.

Allison Elber (2014, rowing)
A native of Brunswick, Ohio, Elber is a four-time Ohio State Scholar-Athlete, three-time Academic All-Big Ten and Big Ten Distinguished Scholar. A team captain, Elber set program history as part of the first women's team at Ohio State to win an NCAA Championship. As a member of the first varsity eight, Elber won a bronze medal at the 2013 NCAA Championships and a gold medal at the 2013 Big Ten Championships, earning CRCA First Team All-Central Region, Pocock First Team All-America and First Team All-Big Ten honors. Throughout her four-year collegiate career, Elber was a member of the 2013 and 2011 Big Ten Championship winning teams, guiding the Buckeyes to their third and fourth conference titles, respectively.  A psychology major, Elber will be attending graduate school at the University of Denver to study sport and performance psychology.

Laura Murray (2000, pistol)
Murray was a two-time national champion and led the Buckeyes to their first women's and open national championships in pistol. She was a U.S. Navy Nurse Corps Officer and worked at the Naval Hospital in Pensacola, Fla., before becoming a staff nurse in the medical surgical unit at Onslow Memorial Hospital, Jacksonville, N.C.

Gina Pietras (1997, synchronized swimming)
A synchronized swimming standout at Ohio State, Gina Pietras won the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1997. She was a three-time U.S. Collegiate Synchronized Swimming Champion, a three-time U.S. Collegiate All-American and three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection. She was named the U.S. Collegiate Athlete of the Year in 1997 and was a letterwinner in each of her four years.

Katie Smith (1996, basketball)
Smith finished her Ohio State career as the Big Ten's all-time leading scorer and won the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1996. She was Big Ten Player of the Year as a senior and led the conference in scoring in 1995 and 1996. A three-time All-Big Ten honoree, Smith guided Ohio State to the 1993 NCAA final as a freshman, scoring 28 points in the game. She was a three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection before beginning her professional basketball career. Smith recently completed her 15-year WNBA career as one of the league's all-time leading scorers, a seven-time All-Star, a two-time champion and was named one of the top-15 players in WNBA history.

Cheryl Perozek (1991, basketball)
Ohio State's all-time leader in three-point field goal percentage, Cheryl Perozek earned the Big Ten Medal Honor in 1991. She led the Buckeyes to three NCAA Tournament appearances and a share of the Big Ten title in 1989. Perozek was a four-time Ohio State scholar-athlete and three-time academic All-Big Ten selection. She led the conference in three-point field goal percentage in 1991 and ranks 10th on the Buckeyes' career assist list (341). She was tabbed Ohio State's team MVP in her senior season.

Mike Lanese (1986, football)
Lanese was a Rhodes Scholar who graduated from Oxford with a degree in English and political science. He became a Surface Warfare Officer on the guided missile cruiser USS Sterett. He eventually started an advertising marketing technology company.

John Frank (1984, football)
Winner of the 1984 Medal of Honor, Frank set school records for receptions and yards by a tight end during his career. Finishing with 121 receptions and 1,481 yards, he was a two-time All-Big Ten honoree, earning the distinction as a junior in 1982 and a senior in 1983, and was named team MVP his final season. Frank's success extended beyond the field as he was named an Academic All-Big
Ten selection and an Academic All-American his junior and senior seasons and was a Rhodes Scholar finalist. After two Super Bowl titles with the San Francisco 49ers, Frank returned to Ohio State and received his doctorate in June, 1992.

David Hoyles (1973, hockey)
Hoyles, who earned the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1973, tallied 131 points (64 goals, 67 assists) in 115 career games at Ohio State. The Tupperville, Ontario native led the Buckeyes with 19 goals as a freshman during the 1969-70 season, a mark which still ranks among the top 10 in freshman scoring in school history. Hoyles served as a captain of the 1971-72 squad, which posted a 24-5-0 overall record. Forty years after concluding his career, Hoyles still ranks 29th in points in school history.

Jerry Lucas (1963, basketball)
Lucas, who received the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1963, was the leading scorer and rebounder on Ohio State's 1960 NCAA Championship team. He was a two-time National Player of the Year, three-time first-team consensus All-American and three-time Big Ten MVP. During his college career, the Buckeyes posted a 78-6 record and won three Big Ten titles. Lucas led the nation in field goal shooting for three consecutive years and still holds Ohio State's career records in field goal percentage (.624), free throws made (438) and rebounds (1,411). The Middletown, Ohio, native was also the youngest player on the USA Basketball team that won the gold medal at the 1960 Olympics. During his 11 seasons in the NBA, Lucas was a seven-time All-Star and five-time All-NBA selection. He was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 1980 and was named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History. Lucas was the first men's basketball player to have his number retired at Ohio State.

Harry Steel (1924, football and wrestling)
Steel became the first Buckeye athlete to win an Olympic medal. He took gold as a heavyweight wrestler at the 1924 Paris Olympics, the same year he won the Big Ten Championship and captained the Ohio State squad. He was a part of the 1923 Buckeye team that won its first Big Ten Championship and was inducted into the Ohio State Hall of Fame in 1980.

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