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Archie Griffin Named ‘Big Ten Icon’ No. 4

CHICAGO – Ohio State’s Archie Griffin has been named Big Ten Icon No. 4. Presented by Discover and hosted by Keith Jackson, Big Ten Icons continues at 9 PM ET on Sunday with a profile of college football’s only two-time Heisman Trophy winner.

The episode includes new one-on-one interviews with Griffin, teammates Ray Griffin, Jeff Logan and John Hicks, fellow Buckeye Heisman Trophy winner Eddie George and others.

Legendary Ohio State coach Woody Hayes once said about Griffin, “He’s a better young man than he is he is a football player, and he’s the best football player I’ve ever seen.”

In the episode, Michigan broadcaster Jim Brandstatter says, “Everybody knew he was going to get the ball 20-25 times a game, and they still couldn’t stop him. And, to me, that’s what Archie Griffin brought to the table — the ability to make a play where there wasn’t a play.”

Griffin, who was born at Ohio State University Hospital and grew up in Columbus, was awarded the Heisman Trophy in 1974 and 1975. He was a three-time All-American, remains the Buckeyes’ all-time leading rusher and was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1986.  Griffin’s No. 45 has been retired by Ohio State.

Griffin helped the Buckeyes win four Big Ten titles from 1972-75 and was the starting tailback in four straight Rose Bowl games. Ohio State posted a 40-5-1 record during his four years, and Griffin rushed for 100 yards or more in 31 straight games.

The NCAA honored Griffin in 1975 with “Top Five” award for academic, athletic and leadership achievements.

In an essay for www.BigTenIcons.com, former Chicago Tribune sports editor Dan McGrath wrote, “In terms of sheer consistency and productivity, no one ever did it better than the 5-foot-8, 182-pound dynamo from Columbus.” To read the essay on Griffin and learn more about his accomplishments, visit his Big Ten Icons locker at www.BigTenIcons.com.

The No. 1 Big Ten Icon will be revealed in March 2011 in conjunction with the Big Ten Men’s Basketball Tournament. Big Ten Icons is the network’s most ambitious multi-platform initiative to date. The program is counting down the top 50 student-athletes in Big Ten history, based solely on their collegiate playing careers. All student-athletes from current Big Ten schools are eligible for the network’s list.    

Fans can visit www.BigTenIcons.com to see a complete roster of Big Ten Icons, which also features essays, video and other key facts about each Icon’s career.

BIG TEN ICONS COUNTDOWN:

  • No. 20    Charles Woodson, Michigan football (1995-97)
  • No. 19    Suzy Favor Hamilton, Wisconsin track and field (1987-91)
  • No. 18    Jack Nicklaus, Ohio State golf (1959-61)
  • No. 17    Steve Alford, Indiana basketball (1983-87)
  • No. 16    John Cappelletti, Penn State football (1971-74)
  • No. 15    Dave Winfield, Minnesota baseball/basketball (1970-73)
  • No. 14    Otto Graham, Northwestern football/basketball/baseball (1940-44)
  • No. 13    Ron Dayne, Wisconsin football (1996-2000)
  • No. 12    John Wooden, Purdue basketball (1930-32)
  • No. 11    Mark Spitz, Indiana swimming (1968-72)
  • No. 10    Isiah Thomas, Indiana basketball (1979-81)
  • No. 9      Rick Mount, Purdue basketball (1967-70)
  • No. 8     Jerry Lucas, Ohio State basketball (1959-62)
  • No. 7     Nile Kinnick, Iowa football/basketball (1937-39)
  • No. 6     Dick Butkus, Illinois football (1962-64)
  • No. 5     Tom Harmon, Michigan football (1938-40)
  • No. 4     Archie Griffin, Ohio State football (1972-75)

About the Big Ten Network: A joint venture between the Big Ten Conference and Fox Networks, the Big Ten Network is the first internationally distributed network dedicated to covering one of the premier collegiate conferences in the country. With approximately 350 live sporting events, and nearly all of them in HD, the network is the ultimate destination for Big Ten fans and alumni across the country, allowing them to see their favorite teams, regardless of where they live. The network operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, showcasing a wide array of classic-to-current sports and televising more Olympic sporting events and women’s sports than has ever been aired on any other network. Original programming highlights activities and accomplishments of some of the nation’s finest universities. Each year, the network offers between 35 and 40 football games, 105 regular season men’s basketball games; 55 women’s basketball games; dozens of Big Ten Championship events; studio shows; coaches’ shows; and classic games. The network is available to more than 75 million homes across the United States and Canada, and currently has agreements with more than 300 affiliates, including AT&T U-Verse, Atlantic Broadband, Cablevision, Charter, Comcast, Cox (Cleveland, Arizona, Arkansas, Kansas, Omaha, Las Vegas and Northern Virginia), DirecTV, DISH Network, Insight, Mediacom, Rogers Cable (Canada), Shaw Cable and Shaw Direct (Canada), Time Warner Cable and Verizon FiOS. For updated information on the Big Ten Network, go to www.BigTenNetwork.com.

Contact: Elizabeth Conlisk

(312) 665-0726

http://go.osu.edu/ArchieIcon