Rutgers and the Big Ten Conference - What They Are Saying

Nov. 20, 2012

Mike Thomas - Athletic Director, University of Illinois
"The addition of Rutgers to the Big Ten Conference is a great complement to the news yesterday. Rutgers is an outstanding academic institution that fits very well with the rest of the Big Ten, and brings some very competitive programs to the conference. The very first college football game was played on the Rutgers campus, adding to the historic traditions in the Big Ten. This has been a very exciting week in the Big Ten as Commissioner Delany and the leadership of the Big Ten institutions continue to be extremely forward thinking."

Gary Barta - Athletic Director, University of Iowa
"The addition of Maryland and Rutgers to the Big Ten has created an exciting new chapter to our conference future. Both institutions represent a strong balance between academic and athletic excellence.

"In addition to sharing our values and principles, Maryland and Rutgers allow the Big Ten to accomplish the goal of expanding the conference market and reach, but doing so in a way that keeps our geography contiguous and our culture consistent.

"I'm excited about the news and addition of Maryland and Rutgers. Now, the hard work of integration begins.

Lisa Bluder - Women's Basketball Head Coach, University of Iowa
"The addition of Maryland and Rutgers adds even more tradition and talent to Big Ten women's basketball. Both programs have a history of success on the national level and will make our conference schedule more challenging. The Big Ten is one of the elite conferences in women's basketball and this expansion only adds to that status.

"It's unique on the women's basketball side with the Iowa connections. (Maryland women's basketball head coach) Brenda Frese is a Cedar Rapids native and everyone knows (Rutgers women's basketball head coach) Vivian Stringer's history at Iowa.

"Vivian is a basketball icon. She obviously has a great history in the Big Ten with all of her success here at Iowa. It's great to have her back in our conference."

Kirk Ferentz - Football Head Coach, University of Iowa
"I think it's a sign of the times; the landscape of college football has changed over the past 20 years, and this is a continuation of that. The people that make those decisions in our conference do a fantastic job, especially Commissioner Jim Delany, our Presidents and our athletic directors. The most recent two additions (Penn State and Nebraska) have been very positive for the league."

Fran McCaffery - Men's Basketball Head Coach, University of Iowa
"In terms of location, I think it's great. You get two teams from the East. I think that will help us expand our recruiting base into those areas. We certainly have connections there, but now that we are playing teams there, I think that will help us.

"In terms of going into Philadelphia, New Jersey and New York, now that we have two teams in the league from that area, I think that will really help us."

Tom Brands - Wrestling Head Coach, University of Iowa
"I think it's awesome to bring in more competition. It's a good move for Maryland and Rutgers, and it's good for the Big Ten. They're both quality schools and we welcome the challenge."

Lou Anna K. Simon - President, Michigan State University
"With a strong research profile, Rutgers is a welcome addition to the Big Ten Conference. We look forward to competing and collaborating with them."

Mark Hollis - Athletic Director, Michigan State University
"As a response to the changing landscape in college athletics, we are excited to welcome Rutgers into the Big Ten Conference. Both Maryland and Rutgers provide an opportunity to expand the Big Ten brand into markets that are expansive and important to Big Ten institutions. I look forward to the integration process that will provide benefits for our student-athletes, staff and most importantly those that enjoy and support Big Ten sports."

Tom Osborne - Athletic Director, University of Nebraska
"Our teams at Nebraska will look forward to competing against teams from Rutgers after next year. We welcome them to the Big Ten Conference."

Bill Carmody - Head Men's Basketball Coach, Northwestern University
(New Jersey native)
"It's great to see the Big Ten Conference expand to the East Coast. Rutgers is a peer institution that has had great success, both athletically and academically. We're pleased to welcome them to the league."

Dave Joyner - Acting Athletic Director, Penn State University
"Penn State is very excited to welcome Rutgers University to the Big Ten Conference. Rutgers is a tremendous addition to an already outstanding family of Big Ten institutions. Our two institutions have a lengthy history of friendships and athletic competition and we're looking forward to future meetings as conference partners and this new era for the Big Ten."

Morgan Burke, Athletic Director, Purdue University
"With Rutgers, the Big Ten Conference is getting another strong academic and athletic institution while further broadening and strengthening its reach and brand. The Big Ten now spans 11 contiguous states. Piscataway is merely 40 miles from New York City, far and away the largest media market in the nation."

Barry Alvarez - Athletic Director, University of Wisconsin
"The addition of Rutgers and Maryland are moves that are intended to help secure the future of the Big Ten Conference. Rutgers is one of the oldest and most historic schools in the country and brings a number of strong elements to the table for our conference. It gives the Big Ten a further foothold in the northeast corridor of the country. It's an AAU institution with a solid standing academically and it brings a large and diverse student body to the Big Ten. Rutgers, as does Maryland, provides a geographic partner for Penn State, as well. Our staff here at Wisconsin looks forward to working and competing with the folks from Rutgers and we welcome them to the conference."

Mark Silverman - President, BTN
"Today, BTN welcomes Rutgers as the latest addition to the Big Ten Conference. Fans of the Scarlet Knights around the world can look forward to unprecedented coverage of their teams and sports."