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Mobile Tour: The Road To Indy

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The Purdue football team stands between the Big Ten Championship and the Leaders Division representative. You could say, Purdue is on the "Road To Indy."

However, not only are the Boilermakers figuratively on the Championship path but they are quite literally on the road to Indy for many of the Big Ten's schools. The second closest school to Indianapolis, I took a quick trip to Indianapolis to show you The Road to Indy.

First, how about a quick geography lesson? Many people outside of Big Ten Country might not realize exactly where Purdue is and some within the conference still might be a little confused. So here you have Purdue, in West Lafayette, Indiana. West Lafayette, is just West of...well, Lafayette (How about that?). In all seriousness the beautiful campus rests around 70 miles northwest of Indianapolis and about 120 miles southeast of Chicago.

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As you can see, Nebraska, Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Northwestern, Michigan State and possibly a lost Illini fan may all pass Purdue on their way to Indianapolis.

Here are some other images from my trip:


I started off at the newly renovated Mackey Arena. Mackey is home to the Purdue men's and women's basketball teams and a place that visitors fear


After a quick left turn, I drive by the beautiful Neil Armstrong (You might have heard of him) Hall of Engineering. This building is one of the cornerstones of Purdue's campus. 

Indiana is known as the "Crossroads of America" and once you get off campus it is a straight shot southeast to Indianapolis. While the scenery may not be spectacular to outsiders, it is a pleasant drive through the countryside for someone who grew up in this beautifully flat state.

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65-South is the route you take. Be careful, it can be windy and you know we love our racing in Indiana so if you choose to go only the speed limit, better stay to the right

Lebanon and Crawfordsville lie between West Lafayette and Indianapolis. One of the greatest scorers in college basketball history is from Lebanon. Just so happens he's a Boiler too. Rick Mount was the first high school athlete to ever be featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated. Rick "the Rocket" Mount attended Lebanon High School. Current Boilermaker D.J. Byrd calls Crawfordsville home.



Getting closer...


No mom, I promise I wasn't driving and taking pictures at the same time. 

For my money (all $17 of it), Indianapolis is one of the most underrated cities in the country, especially when it comes to sports. Indianapolis is home to the Indianapolis 500, Brickyard 400, Men's and Women's Final Fours and Big Ten Tournaments, Super Bowl 46, etc. It's walkable, clean, safe and has enough to do to keep you busy. Try it out, come watch the Boilermakers in the inaugural Big Ten Championship Game!


So close you can almost smell it...figuratively, of course.

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Ohio State never gets the green light in West Lafayette...

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The end of the Big Ten Road. 

See you in November...

Until next time...Ever Grateful, Ever True. Boiler Up, Hammer Down and Hail Purdue!

Mobile Tour: I Am A Boilermaker

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Founder and former CEO of Apple, Steve Jobs once said, "Why join the Navy if you can be a pirate?"

Of course, what he meant to say is "Why cheer for the Irish or Hoosiers if you can be a Boilermaker?" Well, I'm at least 8% sure that's what he meant.

See, in Indiana it's easy to be a Notre Dame and/or IU fan but it's much more fun to be a Boilermaker. How do I know? Because I am one. And before you start calling me biased (which I am), give me a chance to explain my completely unbiased (read: biased) point of view.

I was born a Hoosier - both literally and figuratively. Being born in Indianapolis with a Mother who was an IU graduate, it was easy for me to cheer for the Hoosiers and so I did, briefly. Thankfully, I grew out of that stage of my life with a lot of help from my dad - a Boilermaker graduate. There's a saying that some of us Boilers like, "Hoosier by birth, but Boilermaker by the grace of God."

The Boilermaker nickname is different which is fitting because it takes a different type of person to don the Old Gold and Black. It started as insult by a rival newspaper and just seemed to stick. Purdue took pride in the grungy, blue-collar, tough-nosed mentality.

Being a Boilermaker is not about being glamorous or sexy. It's about working your gold and black trousers off and being proud of your roots. Being a Purdue fan is not something that most people do unless they actually attended Purdue. It makes the Boilermaker bandwagon a small but extremely tight-knit group. The same can't be said for many of our in-state rivals. If you travel outside of Big Ten Country, most people can't even tell you what state Purdue is in.

So what does it mean to be a Boilermaker? It means you're probably going to be looked down upon, but you're okay with that. In fact, you revel in the opportunity to prove people wrong. It means you're going to suffer heartbreak. It means someone's eyebrows will raise when you tell them, "I go/went to Purdue." It means that if you go down, you're going down swinging. Purdue knows the great triumphs of victory and at the very least, if we fail, we fail while daring greatly.

Being a Boilermaker is something special. It's unique, it's exciting, it's not always easy but it brings a great sense of pride.  Being a Boilermaker might be tough but damn, it can be a lot of fun.  So I ask, why join the others if you can be with the Boilers.

Until next time, Ever Grateful, Ever True. Boiler Up, Hammer Down and Hail Purdue!


The Big Ten's Honoring Legends. Building Leaders. Mobile Tour comes to West Lafayette on Thursday! View the schedule below to see where the RV will be when it's on the Purdue campus:

Thursday, September 15
Noon - 4 p.m. ET
Memorial Mall

Friday, September 16
10:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. ET
Memorial Mall

5 - 5:45 p.m. ET
Boiler Bridge Walk

6 - 7 p.m. ET
Lafayette Savings Bank Parking Lot

Saturday, September 17
9 a.m. - Noon and 3 - 4 p.m. ET
Slayter Center on Stadium Avenue

More information:

Learn more about me: Intro video


Mobile Tour: Jonathan Takes Over

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Purdue's Jonathan Gandolf is taking over the Honoring Legends. Building Leaders. Mobile Tour blog, Twitter account and YouTube page through Saturday while the tour is in West Lafayette.

Learn more about Jonathan by watching his introductory video HERE and by reading his intro below:

"My name is Jonathan Gandolf - I am a Boilermaker. I hail from Greenwood, Ind., and I'm passionate about the Sports Management industry. I've cut my teeth in sports working with Pacers Sports & Entertainment, the Purdue Sports Information Department and the Macquarie University Sport and Aquatics Centre (Sydney, Australia). Through my experience in the interactive marketing field with ExactTarget in Indianapolis, I hope to eventually work in a position that allows me to combine those two industries. I am a business management major with minors in International Business, Marketing, Economics and Strategic Management. In my free time I like to stay active. I golf, run and play basketball as much as time will allow. I come from a house divided. My father is a Boilermaker while my mom went to the school that will remain unnamed in Southern Indiana. I am ever grateful, ever true. Boiler Up, Hammer Down and Hail Purdue!"

At the end of the regular season, fans can vote for their favorite student blogger, and the winner will receive a trip to the Big Ten Football Championship Game or a Big Ten bowl game of their choice.

It's all yours, Jonathan!

Mobile Tour: This Weekend's Schedule

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The Big Ten's Honoring Legends. Building Leaders. Mobile Tour comes to West Lafayette on Thursday! View the schedule below to see where the RV will be when it's on the Purdue campus:

Thursday, September 15
Noon - 4 p.m. ET
Memorial Mall

Friday, September 16
10:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. ET
Memorial Mall

5 - 5:45 p.m. ET
Boiler Bridge Walk

6 - 7 p.m. ET
Lafayette Savings Bank Parking Lot

Saturday, September 17
9 a.m. - Noon and 3 - 4 p.m. ET
Slayter Center on Stadium Avenue

More information:

Mobile Tour: On To The Next One

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Indiana senior Caitlin Davis did a great job kicking off the Big Ten's Honoring Legends. Building Leaders. Mobile Tour during its stop in Bloomington!

Remember to follow the tour all season long on this blog and on Twitter @B1GMobileTour and vote for your favorite reporter at the end of the season. The winning student will get a trip to the Big Ten Football Championship Game or a Big Ten bowl game of their choice!

Next stop: Purdue

Mobile Tour: Gameday at Indiana

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The Mobile Tour's last day at Indiana was a busy one as the RV was parked right next to the stadium leading up to the Hoosiers' game against Virginia. IU fans were in full force to celebrate the first home game of the season, check out a video and photos from the final stop in Bloomington.

The day began with members of the RedSteppers Dance Team and the Marching Hundred stopping by to get their photos taken with the Stagg-Paterno Championship Trophy.



Fans were fired up when former Indiana running back Anthony Thompson appeared at the Tour at 4:30 p.m. Thompson is a namesake on the Big Ten's Dungy-Thompson Humanitarian Award. Thompson racked up numerous records while playing for the Hoosiers from 1986-1989.


As game time drew nearer, members of the Indiana cheerleading squad stopped by on their way to the stadium.


Thanks to all Hoosier fans who checked out the Mobile Tour this week!


Mobile Tour: Day Two in Bloomington

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The Mobile Tour rolled on Friday at Indiana University. Hoosier fans were able to take their picture with the Stagg-Paterno Championship Trophy and tested out their football receiving skills. Below are some photos from day two at Indiana, you can also check out a video from the jugs gun game here.








The Mobile Tour RV will be parked at the Hoosier Village (in the parking lot near the southeast corner of the stadium) on Saturday from 1:30-6:30 p.m. leading up to the Indiana-Virginia game at 7:00. Former Hoosier football player Anthony Thompson will be available for photos and autographs at 4:30 p.m.

Hoosier Pride on the Indiana University Campus

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Were you spotted around campus showcasing your Indiana pride? Here's a look at some well-known Hoosiers hotspots.


Indiana has one of the most beautiful campuses in the country.


Everyone is getting into the IU spirit!


A group of IU fans by the Showalter Fountain in the center of campus!


A couple IU basketball fans checking out one of the National Championship trophies in the new Cook Hall practice facility.


The athletic tradition at Indiana is a long and storied one.


Tour Continues Tomorrow in Bloomington

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The Big Ten Mobile Tour continues tomorrow in Bloomington. From 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. the RV will be parked on Fee Lane, near Sembower Field. Come check it out!



Hoosier Legends Recognized Through Trophy Names

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While Indiana may belong to the Leaders division, the legends of Indiana football have also made their mark on the Big Ten Conference. Two of the Big Ten's trophies will feature the namesakes of former Indiana football players.

Antwaan Randel El, one of the most exciting athletes to come through Indiana, is honored on the Thompson-Randel El Freshman of the Year trophy. Randel El set numerous offensive records and came in sixth in the Heisman Trophy voting following his senior campaign in 2001.

Anthony Thompson, a running back for the Hoosiers from 1986-1989, is recognized on the Dungy-Thompson Humanitarian Award. Thompson was named Big Ten Player of the Year and was selected as an All-American following both his junior and senior seasons. More recently, Thompson has taken the role as pastor and spiritual mentor in the Bloomington community. Thompson will be at the Mobile Tour on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. signing autographs for fans. On Saturday, the Mobile Tour RV will be located at Memorial Stadium at the Hoosier Village, just north of 17th Street.

The complete list of Big Ten trophy names can be found here.