It became a thing back in 2014 because of this internets exchange between @fauxpelini and Minnesota mascot Goldy Gopher.
.@FauxPelini just as long as we can turn that $5 or bits of broken chair into a trophy for next year's game— Goldy Gopher (@GoldytheGopher) November 20, 2014
It then disappeared because things without corporate sponsors can no longer exist in our society, especially when there’s gazillions upon gazillions of dollars pouring into college sports and someone might get left out!
The chair lives again!
Now it lives on as a Chair-ity! (Bazinga!
Here’s the press release:
Lincoln, NE and Minneapolis, MN - The $5 Bits of Broken Chair trophy has returned. Through a collaborative effort between supporters of the University of Nebraska and the University of Minnesota, the fan-favorite trophy has been brought back to life with an added purpose; to raise funds for both the Team Jack Foundation and the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital.
A new trophy has been constructed by a small group of Husker fans, most of whom collaborated through r/CFB, an online community at reddit.com. The community is devoted to sharing, creating, and discussing college football content. Gopher fans saw the new trophy on r/CFB and approached the creators with an idea to pair the yearly trophy with a fundraising effort.
The fundraiser attempts to take advantage of the popularity of the trophy to the benefit of some worthy causes, and to give greater incentive for fans, players, and both University communities to carry on the tradition. This year Husker and Gopher fans are raising donations for the Team Jack Foundation and the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital. All donations will be split evenly between the two organizations. To donate to the Chair-ity Fundraiser, or to view the history of the trophy, visit brokenchairtrophy.com.