The Gophers have four official trophy games and one unofficial — the $5 Bits of Broken Chair Trophy, which goes to the Minnesota-Nebraska winner. Here are one man’s rankings of the trophies:
1. Paul Bunyan’s Axe: The Gophers haven’t won this one since 2003, so it’s put down roots in Madison. Funny moment: Embattled coach John Gutekunst, upon seeing the Axe at the postgame news conference after the Gophers won it in 1989, “I hope they don’t chop my head off.”
2. Floyd of Rosedale: Iowa has won Floyd four times in a row, but it’s usually a competitive rivalry. And what’s more fun than winning a 98-pound bronze hog?
3. $5 Bits of Broken Chair Trophy: Sure, it’s not an official trophy, but proceeds of the accompanying fundraiser (brokenchairtrophy.com) go to the U’s Masonic Children’s Hospital and Nebraska’s Team Jack Foundation.
4. Little Brown Jug: The Gophers and Michigan don’t play nearly as often anymore, so the luster is off a bit. Minnesota won the jug as recently as 2014.
5. Governor’s Victory Bell: Started in 1993 to commemorate Penn State’s first game in the Big Ten, this trophy just lacks the pizazz and importance of the others.