Big Ten Network Awards Show to air Wednesday

University Park, Pa. — The Big Ten Network will recognize the best of Big Ten sports in 2009-10 with the third annual Big Ten Network Awards live at 7 p.m. ET on Wednesday, June 23. Mike Hall and Rick Pizzo will host the one-hour show.

Penn State has nominees in three of the eight award categories, as well as strong candidates for the conference’s male and female student-athletes of the year in Megan Hodge (women’s volleyball) and Jason Yeisley (mens’s soccer).

The announcement of two prestigious Big Ten Conference awards, the Suzy Favor Award, for the conference’s best female student-athlete, and the Jesse Owens Award, for the best male student-athlete, will highlight the evening’s festivities. The network also will have interviews with selected award winners, both coaches and players.

The Big Ten Network is available in approximately 75 million homes, including 19 of the nation’s top 20 markets, via 300 cable and satellite providers. The network is available on cable in 46 states.

More than 100 Penn State sporting events, from 24 teams, were televised by the Big Ten Network in 2009-10, in addition to 30-plus hours of Penn State's original, non-sports campus programming (nearly 190 hours of campus programming with repeat airings).

Nominees for Women’s Coach of the Year include Penn State volleyball coach Russ Rose, who has led the Nittany Lions to seven consecutive outright Big Ten titles - 13 overall - and four NCAA Championships, including the last three. Rose was winner of the network’s 2008-09 Women’s Coach of the Year. Additional nominees include Northwestern women’s lacrosse coach Kelly Amonte Hiller, Iowa women’s basketball coach Lisa Bluder, Michigan softball coach Carol Hutchins, Michigan State field hockey coach Rolf van de Kerkhof and Ohio State women’s basketball coach Jim Foster.

Nominees for Women’s Team of the Year include Penn State volleyball, which won its third consecutive NCAA Championship last year and has won 102 consecutive matches, the longest winning streak in NCAA women’s history. Additional nominees include:  Northwestern lacrosse, Purdue golf, Michigan gymnastics, Ohio State basketball and Michigan softball.

Nominees for Game of the Year include the epic Penn State-Texas women’s volleyball match for the 2009 NCAA Championship. The Nittany Lions rallied from a 2-0 deficit to win, 3-2, and finish 38-0 for the second consecutive season. Additional nominees include: Iowa-Indiana (football), Iowa vs. Ohio State (football), Northwestern vs. Auburn, Outback Bowl (football), Illinois vs. Ohio State - Big Ten Men's Basketball Tournament and Ohio State vs. Purdue (men's basketball)

The other award categories are:  Breakout Performance of the Year, Most Dominating Performance, Best Finish, Men’s Coach of the Year and Men’s Team of the Year.

The Big Ten Network Awards show will re-air several times this week (ET):  June 23 (10 p.m.), June 24 (8 a.m., 9 a.m.) and June 26 (10 a.m., 3 p.m., 8 p.m.)

About the Big Ten Network: 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 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.

Available to all cable and satellite providers nationwide and in Canada, the network has agreements with more than 300 affiliates, including Atlantic Broadband, AT&T U-Verse, Bright House, Cablevision, Charter, Comcast, Cox (Omaha, Cleveland, Arizona, Arkansas, Kansas), DirecTV, DISH Network, Insight, Kuhn Communications, Mediacom, Midcontinent, Nittany Media, RCN, Rogers Cable (Canada), Service Electric, Shaw Cable and Shaw Direct (Canada), Time Warner Cable, Verizon FiOS, Western Broadband, Windstream and WOW.

Last Updated November 18, 2010