🏈 When Penn State Joined the Big Ten: A Throwback to 1993 🏈
Today marks a major Big Ten clash: Ohio State vs Penn State. Since Penn State began Big Ten football play in 1993, Ohio State is the only team it has played in every season, and that includes today.
Fun Fact: Penn State actually joined the conference in 1990, but didn’t begin play in football for another three years.
Penn State's 1990 announcement to join the Big Ten led to a three-year wait until their official 1993 debut, causing tension with other Big Ten teams. This move triggered a wave of conference shifts: the SEC acquired Arkansas and South Carolina, the ACC added Florida State, and the Big 8 evolved into the Big XII by merging with Texas teams. The Big East expanded significantly, adding five teams in 1991. Amidst these changes, super conferences emerged, vying for bowl game spots.
Penn State running back Ki-Jana Carter
After Penn State's 1993 entry into the Big Ten, tensions arose. Long-standing Big Ten members felt Penn State aimed to overshadow them. The Big Ten hadn't seen major success since Ohio State's 1968 National Championship. Many believed Penn State would either revive or dominate the league.
This vintage tee, now available in our collection, is more than fabric and print – it's a memento from an era that has left an indelible mark. Let's dive into the details.
The Nittany Lions fanbase is one of a few that hordes their vintage gems. Items like this rare tee are hard to come by in decent condition, usually because Penn State fans pass down their grails, or in rare cases, are buried in them.
To shed light on the nostalgia surrounding this merchandise, Jon Sauber, a renowned Penn State football and basketball writer, reflects:
“I think a lot of it has to do with how good the team was when a lot of the gear would’ve come out. Those teams in the 80s and 90s were some of the best in college football, and I think people usually hang onto gear from years that are special to them.”
It's true. Teams from the 80s and 90s were iconic in college football. Their performances were memorable, which is why fans, both old and new, are so attached to the gear from that era.
Fast-forward to now, the Big Ten has seen a lot of changes. Recent discussions about the Big Ten realignment have made the rounds, prompting a revisit to Penn State's contributions over the years.
If you're keen on owning a piece of history or adding to your vintage sportswear collection, this tee is a must-have. Head to our store to make it yours.
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The Gameday Grails Team