Rivalries that no longer matter and I wish they did

Posted: December 27, 2013 by jmklee in Uncategorized

There is no question what the best rivalry in sports is at this point.  Hands down Alabama – Auburn.  The winner of the annual Iron Bowl has gone on to win the past four BCS titles and Auburn has a chance to make it number five this year if they beat FSU.  Kentucky meets Louisville in Rupp Arena tomorrow in what is the hottest rivalry in college basketball.  The winner of this annual game has gone on to win the past two titles.  Now the fans down on tobacco road will yell that UNC – Duke is still the best and they might be right but we are really splitting hairs at that point.  At least I think we can all agree what rivalries are burning red hot.  What are the rivalries that just don’t matter any longer?  The ones that we used to talk about for weeks before and after the big game that seem to come and go without much of a whimper now.  Here are three rivalries that are in the BDS area that just don’t cut it any longer in my eyes and I really miss the hype that used to surround the games.

Notre Dame vs. USC


I know that many of you might disagree with me on this one but I just do not look forward to this game like I used to.  I get the sense that it is still a big game but that both teams have found new games to replace this one as the must win game of the year.  When I look at next years Irish football schedule and rank the games I would most like to see in person and this game comes in at #6 on the list.  Take a look, I bet it does not come in many of your top 3 for most look forward to games on next years schedule.

Cincinnati vs. Xavier 



I know this is one is 100 miles down I-74 but I used to look forward to this game every year.  Not only has both teams fallen out off the national discussion in recent years but the PC police has gotten involved and changed the frickin name of the game.  Take a look at the picture above again.  The classic Crosstown Shootout has become the pussafide Crosstown Classic.  After the fight a couple of years ago the schools thought if they changed the name that everyone would stand hand in hand like the Who’s down in Whoville and be friends.  Well screw that!  I want the days when Huggins and Thad Matta wanted to crush the souls of the other team back.

Before I get to the last one let me just say it is OK for us to absolutely hate another sports team.  I hate Louisville.  I am not sure if I enjoy watching them lose or my team win more.  I used to be that way with IU basketball when they would win on a more regular basis than they do now.  Some of my best friends hate Kentucky.  I think they would rather see Calipari and UK be placed on probation than Indiana win a national title and that is OK.  Hell, that is awesome and is one of the many things that make sports great.  Villains and someone to root against is what makes the world go round.  That is why Disney puts them in all their movies.  We would not cheer for Mike and Sully as much as we do if Randle didn’t exist (if you don’t have kids you might not get that one).  So stop trying to make us all be friends.  My brother is a fan of the Louisville dirty birds, I don’t wish bad things on him but I sure hope he is not very happy around 6 pm tomorrow and that is the way it should be.  There I feel better.

Last but not least…

Indiana vs. Purdue



Does anyone disagree with this one?  I am not a fan of either team but used to look forward to this bi-annual match up every year.  You remember how big this was.  Gene would comb that hair over and Tammy Faye Keady would put on her best face.  It was the Purdue game that Bob threw the chair and Purdue was one of the biggest reasons why we have the hidden tape recording rant from the IU locker room.  I used to have friends that are not sports fans have people over to watch this game. What happened?  Is it because they don’t always play twice a year any longer?  Is because both teams are not consistently good any longer?  Is it that there are more Colts and Pacer fans around than there used to be?  I’m sure it is a combination of all of them plus some more but wouldn’t it be fun if Crean lost his mind this year and started screaming at Painter like he did against Michigan last year and Matt wrestled him to the floor.  That would get it going again and I would like to see it happen.


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