Northern Illinois Huskies football
The Northern Illinois Huskies football team are a college football program representing Northern Illinois University in the Football Bowl Subdivision of college football. NIU football plays its home games at Huskie Stadium on the campus of the Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois; the Huskies compete in the Mid-American Conference as a member of the West Division, where they have won five championships in 1983, 2011, 2012, 2014 and 2018. They have played in twelve post-season bowl games since 2004, most notably the 2013 Orange Bowl. NIU's football program was established in the late 19th century, playing its first game against DeKalb High School in 1899 and was led by coach John L. Keith to the team's first victory. NIU started out in the independent scene from 1899 through 1919 before joining the Illinois Intercollegiate Athletic Conference; the team became independent again in 1925. NIU returned to the Illinois Intercollegiate Athletic Conference in 1928 and finished the season winless for the first time.
In 1929 however, Red Evans took over as the head football coach and twisted the downhill fate of his team as he led his squad to a 6–1–1 record. Evans led the Huskies to continuous winning seasons since his take over, his efforts paid off in 1938 as NIU captured the Illinois Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championship, the team's first title, he followed it up with three more championships and led the Huskies' to a back-to-back bowl game appearance in 1946 and 1947. In 1950, the Illinois Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, which had dwindled down to only five members accepted its first members from out of state and changed its name to the Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. With the exception of the spotless season in 1951 that earned the team a 5th conference title, NIU failed to make a decent showing during the first few years in the newly named conference. Howard Fletcher though had other plans as he picked up the pieces of the miserable 0–8–1 season from Robert Kahler in 1956.
The Huskies' had a slow progress. The team's third bowl game appearance in 1962, although a loss, was only the beginning of good things to come as in the following season, the Huskies completed their sixth undefeated season which earned them the Interstate Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championship, an AP College Division National championship selection, a ticket to the prestigious Mineral Water Bowl which the team won over Missouri State; the team made it a three-peat championship, adding up the 1965 conference titles. NIU became independent from 1966 through'72 before joining the Mid-American Athletic Conference in 1973; the team claimed the MAC title in 1983 went on to their first Bowl Game in the Division I-A, the California Bowl, which the Huskies won over Cal State-Fullerton. The team left the MAC after the 1985 season and first became independent from 1986–92 joined the Big West Conference from 1993 through'95, becoming independent again in'96 finally was admitted back into the Mid-American Conference in 1997.
Joe Novak took over the Huskies program in December 1995, coached his first NIU game in September 1996. The first three years of Novak's tenure proved to be tumultuous, as his Huskies squads won a total of three games between 1996 and 1998. Despite this, Novak turned the program around. On October 17, 1998, the Huskies broke their epic losing streak, by defeating Central Michigan University 17-6; the student body tore down the goal posts, carried them down Lincoln Highway, planting the goal posts in a campus lagoon. University president John LaTourette paid to have new goal posts installed. In 1999, NIU won 5 games, in 2000 Novak started a string of seven consecutive winning seasons, going 6–5 in both 2000 and 2001. After a 1–3 start to the 2002 season, fans began to see the fruits of Novak's labor as the team ripped off 7 consecutive wins, only a 33–30 loss in their final game against rival Toledo prevented a MAC Championship Game appearance. Optimism was high to start the 2003 season, with 12 returning starters including prospect and future NFL players Michael Turner, Doug Free, Brad Cieslak, P.
J. Fleck, Dan Sheldon, Keith Perry, Vinson Reynolds, Akil Grant, Randee Drew, Travis Moore. On opening weekend, the Huskies beat 20 -- 17, in overtime; the Huskies traveled to Tuscaloosa and beat No. 21 Alabama, 16–13. After beating Iowa State the following week, the Huskies won their first 7 games. Following their week 5 win against Ohio, the first BCS standings were released, by week 7 the Huskies had climbed to No. 10 overall. Novak and the Huskies could not keep that momentum going, as they lost in week 8 at No. 22 Bowling Green, which featured the first ESPN GameDay appearance for a MAC football game. The Huskies lost one more game in 2003, to Toledo, finishing the year 10–2, uninvited to a bowl game. Novak's 2004 and 2006 teams both went to bowl games; the 2004 team went to the Silicon Valley Classic in San Jose and was the first Huskies team to go bowling in 21 years. The Huskies fell behind early, 14–0, to a Troy team that featured current NFLer DeMarcus Ware, but were able to rally behind future NFL running back Garrett Wolfe and the accurate passing of Josh Haldi to win, 34–21.
In 2006, Wolfe and company returned to a bowl, the Poinsettia Bowl, against TCU and lost 37–7. Novak's final year was a tough one, winning only 2 games and finishing at the bottom of the MAC West. Overall Novak won 63 games as the Huskies' head coach, he is retired and resides in North Carolina. The Huskies finished the 2007 season having produced a 1,000-yard rusher in
The Cheez-It Bowl is an NCAA FBS college football bowl game, played in the state of Arizona since 1989. Played as the Copper Bowl from inception through 1996, it was known as the Insight.com Bowl from 1997 through 2001 the Insight Bowl from 2002 through 2011, the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl for 2012 and 2013, the Cactus Bowl from 2014 through 2017. In 2018 the game was renamed again, sponsored by Cheez-It crackers; when the bowl was founded, it was played at Arizona Stadium in Tucson, on the campus of the University of Arizona. In 2000, the organizers moved the game from Tucson to Phoenix. There, it was played at what is now known as Chase Field, the home of the Arizona Diamondbacks of Major League Baseball. For the 2006 season, the bowl moved a second time. After the annual Fiesta Bowl left Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe in favor of playing in University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, the Cheez-It Bowl was relocated there as a permanent replacement; the Cheez-It Bowl is temporarily being played at its previous home of Chase Field in Phoenix while Sun Devil Stadium undergoes renovations.
The renovations are being undertaken during the offseason, requiring Arizona State to close the stadium at the conclusion of football season through 2017. During this time, the game is one of two bowl games played in baseball-specific stadiums: the other being the Pinstripe Bowl, played at Yankee Stadium. "Cactus Bowl" had been the planned name for what became the Copper Bowl in 1989. The game was played under the Copper Bowl name through 1996, after which title sponsorship rights were assumed by Insight Enterprises, who self-titled the game from 1997 through 2011. In 2012, restaurant chain Buffalo Wild Wings became the sponsor and self-titled the game for two years. Buffalo Wild Wings declined to renew sponsorship following the 2013 game, at which time organizers opted to rename the game "Cactus Bowl" rather than reverting to the Copper Bowl name. There had been a Texas-based Cactus Bowl played in Division II, however that game was discontinued after 2011. For 2014, TicketCity sponsored the new Cactus Bowl, Motel 6 became the sponsor in 2015.
In 2018, Kellogg's became the sponsor and rebranded the bowl, naming it after its popular cheese cracker, Cheez-It. For the first ten years, the game was played at Arizona Stadium, on the campus of the University of Arizona in Tucson, Arizona. In 2000, the bowl's organizers moved the game to Bank One Ballpark, a baseball-specific stadium, in downtown Phoenix. In 2006, the game moved to Sun Devil Stadium at Arizona State University in Tempe to replace the Fiesta Bowl, which had moved to University of Phoenix Stadium in the Phoenix suburb of Glendale; the 2006 game set a record for the biggest comeback in NCAA Division I FBS bowl history, as Texas Tech came back from a 38–7 third-quarter deficit to defeat Minnesota 44–41 in overtime. Before 2006, the game featured teams from the Pac-10, WAC, Big 12, old Big East conferences. From 2006-2013, it began featuring an annual matchup between teams from the Big Ten and the Big 12. Starting with the 2015 game, it has featured a matchup between Pac-12 and Big 12 teams, contingent on bowl eligibility.
Teams from the ACC and MW have competed, along with teams from the now defunct SWC and Big Eight, one independent school. For the first three playings of the Copper Bowl, TBS carried the game. Beginning in 1992 and continuing until the 2005 playing, the game aired on ESPN. After a four-year hiatus, during which NFL Network carried the game, ESPN regained the rights beginning in 2010. Games 1–11 played in Tucson at Arizona Stadium Games 12–17 played in Phoenix at Bank One Ballpark Games 18–26 played in Tempe at Sun Devil Stadium Games 27–present played in Phoenix at Chase Field Two MVPs are selected for each game; the bowl awarded a sportsmanship award for the 2001 through January 2016 games. Texas is the only current Big 12 school. Seven of the current Big 12 schools have appeared multiple times. Former Big 12 members Colorado and Missouri have appeared in the bowl, but former Big 12 members Nebraska and Texas A&M have not. Updated through the December 2018 edition. Teams with multiple appearancesTeams with a single appearanceWon: BYU, Kansas, Michigan State, Washington State, Wisconsin Lost: Air Force, Boise State, Boston College, New Mexico, North Carolina State, Notre Dame, Rutgers, UCLA, Virginia Tech, Washington Updated through the December 2018 edition.
Notes: Pac-12 record includes appearances when the conference was the Pac-10. From 1989 through 2005, Pac-10 teams made eight appearances and were 7–1. Current Pac-12 member Colorado appeared in the game as a member of the Big 12 in 1999. Notre Dame appeared as an Independent in 2004; the bowl has been televised by three different networks. List of college bowl games Official website
1997 Michigan Wolverines football team
The 1997 Michigan Wolverines football team represented the University of Michigan in the 1997 Big Ten Conference football season. In its third year under head coach Lloyd Carr, Michigan compiled a perfect 12–0 record, won the Big Ten Conference championship, defeated Washington State in the 1998 Rose Bowl, was declared the national champion by the Associated Press and numerous other polls. Michigan's defense was led by Heisman Trophy-winner Charles Woodson. Woodson, who intercepted eight passes and scored touchdowns via pass receptions, runs from scrimmage and punt return, became the first defensive player to win the Heisman. Woodson and defensive end Glen Steele were both first-team selections on the 1997 College Football All-America Team. Other standouts on defense included linebackers James Hall with 8.5 quarterback sacks, Sam Sword with 91 tackles, Dhani Jones with 90 tackles and six sacks. The defense allowed no fourth quarter points or second half touchdowns in the first eight games of the season.
The unit's performance across all games in total defense and scoring defense are the lowest marks by any Big Ten Conference football team since the 1985 season. On offense, the 1997 Michigan team had a 500-yard receiver. Tai Streets was the leading receiver with 476 receiving yards, Chris Howard led the team in rushing with 938 rushing yards. Quarterback Brian Griese set Michigan single-season records with 193 pass completions and 307 pass attempts. Tight end Jerame Tuman, the only player on the offensive unit selected as a first-team All-American, totaled 437 receiving yards and five touchdowns. Ten members of the team were honored as All-Big Ten Conference selections, running back Anthony Thomas was named the Big Ten Freshman of the Year. Thirty-one members of the 1997 Wolverines football team went on to play in the NFL. Prior to 1997, the Wolverines had compiled four consecutive four-loss seasons and had not won a national championship since the 1948 Michigan team. Pre-season ranking Going into the 1997 season, the Wolverines were ranked No. 17 in the pre-season Coaches' Poll and had experienced four consecutive four-loss seasons for the first time since the 1934–1937 Michigan Wolverines football teams.
Michigan had not won a national championship in nearly 50 years and had not played in a Rose Bowl Game since the 1992 season. The 1997 Michigan team was the first since the 1969 team to have no Rose Bowl veterans. In early September 1997, The Columbus Dispatch wrote off Michigan, noting that "the longtime beast of the Big Ten... has lost much of its aura" and predicting that Michigan's 1997 schedule "doesn't create a feeling that the pendulum is about to swing back."Quarterback competition The months before the 1997 season opener featured uncertainty over the quarterback position. Junior Scott Dreisbach had started 11 games for the 1996 team, but fifth-year senior Brian Griese had relieved Driesbach in the Ohio State game after Driesbach was injured and helped the team recover from a 9–0 deficit. Dreisbach and Griese faced competition from sophomore and future Super Bowl MVP, Tom Brady. Shortly before the season opener, head coach Lloyd Carr announced his selection of Griese as the starting quarterback.
Receiving corps Despite uncertainty at quarterback, Michigan entered the 1997 season with a solid group of receivers, including Tai Streets and Russell Shaw, as well as returning All-Big Ten tight end Jerame Tuman. Analysts believed that a solid season by any of the Michigan quarterbacks could lead to a productive season in the passing game. Moreover, it was anticipated that Charles Woodson, regarded as one of the most versatile athletes in college football, would play on offense. Offensive line. Three linemen from the 1996 team had been selected in the 1997 NFL Draft: center Rod Payne, offensive guard Damon Denson and defensive tackle William Carr; as a result, Michigan began the season with only one offensive lineman, offensive tackle Jon Jansen, who had started a game. Jansen, a junior, had 25 consecutive starts entering the season; the offensive line was further weakened when Jeff Backus, suffered a ruptured appendix. In spring practice, offensive line coach Terry Malone made a plea for help during a staff meeting, searching for talent to fill in on the line.
To fill the holes on the offensive line, two defensive linemen, Steve Hutchinson and Chris Ziemann were moved to the offensive line. Strength of schedule Adding to the challenges facing the 1997 team, Michigan entered the season with the toughest schedule among the 112 NCAA Division I-A schools based on records from the previous year. Days before the season opener, Lloyd Carr compared the daunting schedule to an expedition to Mount Everest. Carr noted, "It's a little akin to climbing Mount Everest, but Mount Everest has been climbed. And with great preparation and determination, great attitude, which I think our players have, I can assure you we're looking forward to it." Michigan opened the 1997 season with a home game against Colorado. Three years earlier, Colorado had defeated Michigan in a game nicknamed "The Miracle at Michigan" on Kordell Stewart's 64-yard Hail Mary pass to Michael Westbrook as time ran out. Michigan won the 1997 game 27 to 3, a margin that eliminated the possibility of another last-minute miracle.
Griese completed 21 of 28 forward pass attempts for two touchdowns. Tight end Jerame Tuman had five receptions for 126 yards. Defensively, Michigan intercepted four passes thrown by Colorado's John Hessler, while holding him to 141 yards on 15 of 39 passing. Throughout the game, Michigan relied on man-to
Big Ten Conference
The Big Ten Conference is the oldest Division I collegiate athletic conference in the United States, based in suburban Chicago, Illinois. Despite its name, the conference consists of 14 members, they compete in the NCAA Division I. The conference includes the flagship public university in each of 11 states stretching from New Jersey to Nebraska, as well as two additional public land grant schools and a private university; the Big Ten Conference was established in 1895 when Purdue University president James H. Smart and representatives from the University of Chicago, University of Illinois, University of Michigan, University of Minnesota, Northwestern University, University of Wisconsin gathered at Chicago's Palmer House Hotel to set policies aimed at regulating intercollegiate athletics. In 1905, the conference was incorporated as the "Intercollegiate Conference of Faculty Representatives"; the conference is one of the nation's oldest, predating the founding of the NCAA by a decade, was one of the first collegiate conferences to sponsor men's basketball.
Big Ten member institutions are predominantly major flagship research universities with large financial endowments and strong academic reputations. Large student enrollment is a hallmark of Big Ten Universities, as 13 of the 14 members feature enrollments of 20,000 or more students. Northwestern University, the only full member with a total enrollment of fewer than 30,000 students, is the lone private university among Big Ten membership. Collectively, Big Ten universities educate more than 520,000 total students and have 5.7 million living alumni. Big Ten universities engage in $9.3 billion in funded research each year. Though the Big Ten existed for nearly a century as an assemblage of universities located in the Midwest, the conference's geographic footprint now stretches east to the Atlantic Ocean. Big Ten universities are members of the Big Ten Academic Alliance, an academic consortium. In 2014–2015, members generated more than $10 billion in research expenditures. Despite the conference's name, the Big Ten has grown to fourteen members, with the following universities accepting invitations to join: Pennsylvania State University in 1990, the University of Nebraska–Lincoln in 2011, both the University of Maryland and Rutgers University in 2014.
Johns Hopkins University was invited in 2012 to join the Big Ten as an associate member participating in men's lacrosse, in 2015, it was accepted as an associate member in women's lacrosse. Notre Dame joined the Big Ten on July 2017 as an associate member in men's ice hockey. Notes Notes The University of Chicago was a co-founder of the conference. Lake Forest College attended the original 1895 meeting that led to the formation of the conference, but never participated in athletics or any other activities. Full members Full members Sport Affiliate Other Conference Other Conference The Big Ten Conference sponsors championship competition in 14 men's and 14 women's NCAA sanctioned sports. Notes: * Notre Dame joined the Big Ten in the 2017–18 school year as an affiliate member in men's ice hockey, it continues to field its other sports in the ACC except in football where it will continue to compete as an independent. ° Johns Hopkins joined the Big Ten in 2014 as an affiliate member in men's lacrosse, with women's lacrosse to follow in 2016.
It continues to field its other sports in the NCAA Division III Centennial ConferenceMen's varsity sports not sponsored by the Big Ten Conference that are played by Big Ten schools: Notes: 1: Fencing is a coeducational team sport, although a few schools field only a women's team. Ohio State and Penn State, like most NCAA fencing schools, have coed teams. 2: Men's rowing, whether heavyweight or lightweight, is not governed by the NCAA, but instead by the Intercollegiate Rowing Association. Rutgers Men's Rowing was downgraded to Club status in 2008, but remains a member of the EARC. 3: Unlike rifle, pistol is not an NCAA-governed sport. It is coeducational. 4: Rifle is technically a men's sport, but men's, women's, coed teams all compete against each other. Ohio State fields a coed team. Women's varsity sports not sponsored by the Big Ten Conference that are played by Big Ten schools: Initiated and led by Purdue University President James Henry Smart, the presidents of University of Chicago, University of Illinois, University of Minnesota, University of Wisconsin, Northwestern University, Purdue University and Lake Forest College met in Chicago on January 11, 1895 to discuss the regulation and control of intercollegiate athletics.
The eligibility of student-athletes was one of the main topics of discussion. The Intercollegiate Conference of Faculty Representatives was founded at a second meeting on February 8, 1896. Lake Forest was not at the 1896 meeting that established the conference and was replaced by the University of Michigan. At the time, the organization was more known as the Western Conference, consisting of Illinois, Wisconsin, Chicago and Northwestern; the first reference to the conference as the Big Nine was in 1899 after Indiana had joined. Nebraska first petitioned to join the league in 1900 and again in 1911, but was turned away both times. In April 1907, Michigan was voted out of the conference for failing to adhere to league rules. Ohio State was added to the conference in 1912; the first known references to the conference as the Big Ten were in December 1916, when Michigan sought to rejoin th
Hard Rock Stadium
Hard Rock Stadium is a multipurpose football stadium located in Miami Gardens, Florida, a city north of Miami. It is the home stadium of the Miami Dolphins of the National Football League. Hard Rock Stadium plays host to the Miami Hurricanes football team during their regular season; the facility hosts the Orange Bowl, an annual college football bowl game. It was the home to the Florida Marlins of Major League Baseball from 1993 to 2011. From 2019, the stadium is home to the Miami Open tennis tournament, played in March; the stadium has hosted five Super Bowls, the 2010 Pro Bowl, two World Series, four BCS National Championship Games, the second round of the 2009 World Baseball Classic, WrestleMania XXVIII. The stadium will host Super Bowl LIV in 2020 and the College Football Playoff National Championship in 2021; the facility opened in 1987 as Joe Robbie Stadium and has been known by a number of names since: Pro Player Park, Pro Player Stadium, Dolphins Stadium, Dolphin Stadium, Land Shark Stadium, Sun Life Stadium.
In August 2016 the team sold the naming rights to Hard Rock Cafe Inc. for $250 million over 18 years. For their first 21 seasons, the Miami Dolphins played at the Orange Bowl. Joe Robbie, the team's founder, led the financing campaign to build a new home for the team, he believed. At his request, the stadium was built so only minimal renovations would be necessary to ready it for a baseball team. Most notably, the field was made somewhat wider than is the case for an NFL stadium; the wide field made it easy to convert the stadium for soccer. Because of this design decision, the first row of seats was 90 ft from the sideline in a football configuration more distant than the first row of seats in most football stadiums; this resulted in a less intimate venue for football compared to other football facilities built around this time, as well as to the Orange Bowl. At the time it opened in 1987, the stadium was located in an unincorporated area within Miami-Dade County, had a Miami address. Miami Gardens was incorporated on May 13, 2003.
The first preseason game for the Dolphins was played on August 1987 against the Chicago Bears. The first regular season game was scheduled for September 27, a week 3 game against the New York Giants; the first regular season NFL game played there was a 42–0 Dolphins victory over the Kansas City Chiefs on October 11, 1987. The game was in the middle of the 1987 NFL strike, was played with replacement players; the first game with union players was on October 25 of that year, a 34-31 overtime loss to the Buffalo Bills. The stadium hosted its first Monday Night Football game on December 7 of that year, a 37–28 Dolphins victory over the New York Jets; the Dolphins have played eight playoff games in the stadium, including the 1992 AFC Championship Game, which the team lost to the Buffalo Bills, 29–10. The Dolphins are 5–3 in playoff games held here, losing the most recent one in January 2009, against the Baltimore Ravens; the team is unbeaten here against the Minnesota Vikings, Los Angeles/San Diego Chargers, Los Angeles/St.
Louis Rams, Washington Redskins. The Chargers are 0-8 overall in the stadium losing Super Bowl XXIX to the San Francisco 49ers. While Joe Robbie was a multi-purpose stadium built for football, its design accommodated baseball and soccer. Dolphins founder Joe Robbie believed it was a foregone conclusion that MLB would come to South Florida, so he wanted the stadium designed to make any necessary renovations for baseball as seamless as possible. In 1990, Wayne Huizenga purchased 50% of then-Joe Robbie Stadium and became the point man in the drive to bring Major League Baseball to South Florida; that effort was rewarded in July 1991. The new team was named the Florida Marlins, placed in the National League to begin competing in 1993; the first Marlins game played at then-Joe Robbie Stadium was on April 5, 1993, a 6–3 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Marlins drew more than 3 million people in their inaugural season, they went on to won two World Series titles, in 1997 and 2003. Despite such preparation and pockets of success, the stadium was less than adequate as a baseball venue.
Although its design was meant to accommodate baseball, it was a football stadium. There were plenty of reminders of that purpose in the stadium's baseball configuration; the stadium's color scheme matched that of the Dolphins. When the football season overlapped, cleat marks, as well as silhouettes of hashmarks and logos of the Dolphins or Hurricanes, were visible on the baseball diamond; the Marlins reduced capacity to 47,662 to create a more intimate atmosphere for baseball. However, capacity would have been reduced in any event, since many of the seats in the upper deck were too far from the field to be of any use during the regular season. With the reduced capacity, the sight lines were less than optimal for baseball. Most seats were pointed toward the 50-yard line—where center field was located in the baseball configuration. Lights were not angled for optimum baseball visibility. Players had to walk through football tunnels to get to dugouts that were designed with low ceiling joists; some of these embarrassing issues were showcased on national television du
Big 12 Conference
The Big 12 Conference is a collegiate athletic conference headquartered in Irving, Texas. The conference consists of ten full-member universities, it is a member of Division I of the National Collegiate Athletic Association for all sports. Its football teams compete in the Football Bowl Subdivision, the higher of two levels of NCAA Division I football competition, its ten members, located in Iowa, Oklahoma and West Virginia, include eight public and two private, Christian schools. Additionally, the Big 12 has 11 affiliate members, eight for the sport of wrestling, one for women's gymnastics, two for women's rowing; the Big 12 Conference is a 501 nonprofit organization incorporated in Delaware. The Big 12 Conference was founded on February 25, 1994; the eight members of the former Big Eight Conference joined with Southwest Conference schools Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech to form the new Big 12 Conference, which commenced competition on August 31, 1996. Oklahoma and Oklahoma State were grouped with the four former SWC schools in the Big 12 South division, while the other six teams of the former Big Eight formed the Big 12 North division.
The conference's current 10-campus makeup resulted from the 2010–13 Big 12 Conference realignment, in which Nebraska joined the Big Ten Conference, Colorado joined the Pac-12, Missouri and Texas A&M joined the Southeastern Conference. TCU and West Virginia joined from the Mountain West and Big East Conferences to offset two of the departing schools, bringing the conference to its current strength; the Big 12 Conference, like others involved in the realignment, has kept its name for marketing purposes. Attempts to rename the Big 12 to reflect its current strength would lead to confusion with the current Big Ten Conference; the Big 12 Conference commissioner is Bob Bowlsby. On July 29, 2015, the Big 12 announced it would add the six former members of the Western Wrestling Conference—Air Force, Northern Colorado, North Dakota State, South Dakota State, Utah Valley, Wyoming—as affiliate members for wrestling, plus Denver as an affiliate member for women's gymnastics, all effective with the 2015–16 school year.
On July 5, 2017, the Big 12 added Northern Iowa as wrestling affiliates. Full members Assoc. member Other Conference The Big 12 Conference sponsors championship competition in ten men's and thirteen women's NCAA sanctioned sports. Men's varsity sports not sponsored by the Big 12 Conference which are played by Big 12 schools: Rifle is categorized as a men's sport because the NCAA bylaws that establish scholarship limits for each sport list rifle as a men's sport. Nonetheless, it is an open coed sport in NCAA college athletics, with men's, women's, coed teams in all NCAA divisions competing against each other. TCU and West Virginia both field coed teams. Through 2017, West Virginia with 19 national titles and TCU with two, together have won over half of the NCAA titles awarded since the inaugural NCAA championship in 1980. West Virginia won four pre-NCAA national titles. Women's varsity sports not sponsored by the Big 12 Conference which are played by Big 12 schools: Rifle is categorized as a men's sport because the NCAA bylaws that establish scholarship limits for each sport list rifle as a men's sport.
Nonetheless, it is an open coed sport in NCAA college athletics, with men's, women's, coed teams in all NCAA divisions competing against each other. TCU and West Virginia both field coed teams. Through 2018, West Virginia with 19 national titles and TCU with two, together have won over half of the NCAA titles awarded since the inaugural NCAA championship in 1980. West Virginia won four pre-NCAA national titles; the Big 12 Conference is a major college athletic conference in the United States, having formed in February 1994 when four prominent colleges from Texas that were members of the Southwest Conference were invited to join the eight members of the Big Eight Conference to form a new 12 member conference. The Big 12 does not claim the Big Eight's history as its own though it was the Big Eight plus the four Texas schools; the Big 12 began athletic play in the fall of 1996, with the Texas Tech vs. Kansas State football game being the first-ever sports event staged by the conference. From its formation until 2011, its 12 members competed in two divisions.
Between 2011 and 2012 four charter members left the conference, while two schools joined in 2012. The Big 12 is unique among the current "Power Five" conferences in that it only has 10 members, despite the name, causing some confusion. From 1987 to 2015, 12 or more members were required for an "exempt" conference championship game—that is, one that did not count against NCAA limits for regular-season games —although the first such game was not established until the SEC did so in 1992. Former Texas Athletic Director DeLoss Dodds and former football coach Mack Brown, along with Oklahoma football coach Bob Stoops, preferred not to have a championship game. Critics argued. Conferences with a championship game have their division champions play one of their toughest games of the year in the last week of the regular season. Unlike the other "Power 5" conferences in which a team