Indy a logical choice for first title game

August, 5, 2010
As soon as Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany talked about securing a short-term deal for the league's initial championship game in football, my thoughts started drifting down I-65 -- toward Naptown.

Indianapolis' Lucas Oil Stadium always has been the most logical choice to host a Big Ten title game. It's a new facility in a centralized location. It's indoors, preventing the logistical headaches of bad weather. It's also close to hotels and restaurants in downtown Indy. It will host the Super Bowl in 2012.

The Big Ten agreed, selecting Lucas Oil Stadium as the proposed site for its first title game, to be played in December 2011. The league will start a 30-day negotiating period with Lucas Oil Stadium and Indiana Sports Corp.
"We felt at this time it was important to identify a site for the first championship game and then spend more time with other cities and venues with respect to both our basketball tournaments and the football championship games in the future," Delany said in a statement. "The city of Indianapolis has been an outstanding host for our basketball tournaments, and we look forward to holding our first Big Ten Football championship game in Lucas Oil Stadium."

The Big Ten will spend the next year evaluating all the options for a championship game as it maps out a long-term plan for 2012 and beyond. Venues such as Chicago's Soldier Field, Green Bay's Lambeau Field, Detroit's Ford Field and Cleveland Browns Stadium have expressed interest.

These venues break down into two categories: cool and logical. Lambeau Field would be really cool, but it brings some risks. Lucas Oil and Ford Field are the two safe choices, so it's no surprise to see the Big Ten make this move to get the game off the ground.



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