Sept. 12, 2010
• BigTenIcons.com | Ameche Profile
CHICAGO -- The Big Ten Network has named Wisconsin’s Alan Ameche No. 30 on its Big Ten Icons countdown.
Big Ten Icons, presented by Discover, is the network’s most ambitious multi-platform initiative to date. The program is counting down the top 50 student-athletes in Big Ten history, based solely on their collegiate playing careers, on www.BigTenIcons.com.
Ameche, a football star at Wisconsin from 1951-54, was a first-generation American whose family settled in Kenosha, Wis., after emigrating from Italy.
With an old-world appreciation for music of all sorts, legend has it that Ameche decided to attend Wisconsin after his first visit to its extensive music library.
Ameche’s first season in a Wisconsin football jersey was a memorable one. He became the first freshman to lead the Big Ten in rushing as the Badgers went 7-1-1. He led Wisconsin to its first Rose Bowl in 1952, was awarded the Heisman Trophy in 1954 and was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1979.
He also was enshrined in the UW Athletics Hall of Fame in 1991.
In an essay for www.BigTenIcons.com, former Chicago Tribune sports editor Dan McGrath wrote Ameche is “still remembered as one of the men responsible for elevating football to the exalted place it now occupies in American sports.”
To read the full essay and to watch a video feature on Ameche, visit his Big Ten Icons locker at www.BigTenIcons.com.