Big Ten Championship Game Moving to Chicago?
The Big Ten Championship Game has been held at Indianapolis’ Lucas Oil Stadium since the inaugural game in 2011. There has been grumbling that the game should be played in the elements – a hallmark of Midwestern football. Well, it looks like people might get their wish.
ESPN.com has reported the city of Chicago not only started a sports commission, but hired the former head of the Indianapolis Convention and Visitors Association, which works in conjunction with the Indiana Sports Corp.
The ISC is one of the leading sports commissions in the country. The high-profile events that the city of Indianapolis has been able to attract are proof of that.
Indianapolis owns the Big Ten title game through 2015, but the bidding process for years beyond that are wide open.
Attendance has been a challenge in Indianapolis for the first two Big Ten football championships -- last year's event drew only 41,260 -- and also for some recent basketball tournaments. Chicago could have an easier time there because there are so many more Big Ten fans in the area. A bigger obstacle for the city could be logistics, as Soldier Field isn't nearly as centralized as Lucas Oil Stadium.
But (executive director of the Chicago Sports Commission Sam Stark) is confident his group can "shrink Chicago."