When you do something good, you want to be rewarded for it. It's human nature, whether you're an overworked and underpaid public employee, or a grubby little kid who made it to the quarterfinals of your under-8 co-ed indoor soccer league playoffs. Or, I guess, a big time college football team that just beat a rival.
Workers get money, little kids get trophies, and college athletes that aren't allowed to be paid like workers get trophies too. But somewhere along the line, fate smiled upon the weary Big Ten college football player, and decided that if they must be compensated by trophy, they were gonna be compensated by some of the most insane trophies in the world.
I have an undying and unabashed love for the rivalry trophies of the Big Ten. The ones that are animal related are goofy, the ones that are Paul Bunyan related are pretty hilariously phallic (weird for things conceived when Freud was kicking around), and the ones that are ridiculous chunks of wood glued together are... well, they're ridiculous chinks of wood glued together. All of them equate to a glorious pastiche of straight up poor taste and an inherent weirdness that is somehow more Midwestern than anything else we could try to come up with.
They're awesome, and on the eve of Illibuck, I celebrate them.