Trash Cans, Pimp Canes and Chains – The Rise of Turnover Trophies

Well, folks, it looks like we’ve found the latest trend in college football. I’m not talking about Taylor Swift rapping us all the way to commercial breaks. I’m talking about turnover trophies.

I first saw this last winter at the Under Armour High School All-American Game. Throughout the week of practice, any time the defense made an interception or recovered a fumble, the whole team would literally sprint 60 yards down the sideline to find a trash can and dunk the ball in it. I loved it then, and I love it now. But as the tradition has made its way to college football, it’s taken on a life of its own.


It started on Saturday, when Miami upped the ante with a gold chain…


… and then Texas A&M dropped the mic on Sunday with a pimp cane.

(It turns out this isn’t an actual pimp cane – because of course it isn’t – but a drum major’s baton from the school marching band, called a mace. I’m sticking with pimp cane though, sorry.

Monday night, Tennessee emerged with a trash can of its own.

Several other schools are doing something similar. Alabama was actually the unofficial creator of this whole tradition, with a WWE belt that I first saw two years ago when Minkah Fitzpatrick picked off Texas A&M’s Kyle Allen two times.

I didn’t think anyone could think this is anything but awesome, but sure enough I found someone.

I really, really like Joel Klatt. He is maybe the smartest analyst in the game. But man, lighten up. This is awesome!

What’s the biggest complaint people have about the NFL? It’s no fun, right? The league had to basically pull Roger Goodell’s teeth out this summer for him to ease up on celebration penalties. Unlike the sterile, overly regulated product the NFL puts on the field every Sunday, college football is about passion, personality, and energy. This is what separates college football from the pros.

This isn’t taunting, either – it’d be one thing if an assistant coach ran out to midfield with the trashcan and dunked it on the other team’s logo or something. It’s a creative motivational tactic that the players have clearly responded to.  This is a great fad that shouldn’t slow down anytime soon.

For the record, here is my definitive ranking of turnover trophies – subject to change as more teams jump on this bandwagon.

  1. Miami’s Chain Necklace
  2. Texas A&M’s Pimp Cane
  3. Tennessee Trash Can
  4. Alabama WWE Belt

I will update throughout the season accordingly. I went to journalism school for this.

2 thoughts on “Trash Cans, Pimp Canes and Chains – The Rise of Turnover Trophies

  1. Florida State just joined the club with our lame little turnover backpack. I don’t even like football and I think this is hella lame. It’s like they are so surprised they just scored or recovered the ball, they make it into a mini celebration. Congratulations, you did your job…


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