Folks, it’s back. That’s right, one of the most anticipated weeks of College Football is here.
Rivalry week. Ri-val-ry week.
Try saying that one three times fast. Don’t worry, even Bo Jackson has trouble with it too, so you’re not alone. Here are eight college students' opinions on rivalry week.
Florida and Florida State
UF and FSU are known for their deep hatred for one another. Both trying to dominate the Sunshine State, this one is guaranteed to get heated every single year. Both schools are the dominate recruiters around the state, so most of these guys grew up together. But if one thing is for sure it’s that Garnet and Gold and Orange and Blue do not mix one bit. The Gators have the edge on the overall series, with 34 wins to FSU’s 24. But as we’ve seen before with these two teams, anything can happen. Doak Campbell will erupt with Gator Chomps and Seminole Chops at 8 pm on Saturday.
Caroline Cooper, University of Florida
"My rivalry is one of respect because both teams are great and have unique winning aspects of their own. Hate never helps. Respect shows maturity. [This year] I will watch the game at home with my family! I think the UF/FSU rivalry is so hyped. These are the two biggest Florida college football teams battling against each other! There is no better game than that."
Monica Rowe, Florida State University
"My rivalry revolves around respect. As someone who considered University of Florida before making my final decision, I respect the school — until the trash talking starts — then it's ON! I will be watching from home this year, unfortunately. Of course I'll still get into it as much as I would in person, but this way I can avoid the inevitable blood bath that is college football rivalry. UF is a good school, as is FSU. But Gainesville will never come close to the perks of Tallahassee and Florida State's environment and school spirit, especially with that horribly bright orange color those guys wear! Go Noles!"
Auburn and Alabama
The Iron Bowl is the bowl that takes hold of the state of Alabama once a year. Once a year, Saban’s power house steps in to try and dominate their number one rival. Gus Malzahn and his Auburn Tigers will be heading to Tuscaloosa this year. Right now, Bama leads the series 44-35. Although any avid college football fan probably remembers 2013 — no matter which side they’re on (Auburn’s Chris Davis ran back a missed field goal straight to the house, to win the game). Saban and his Tide might be the dominate force, but with that play, Auburn proved they come to play. The bottom line is that the Iron Bowl is a historic tradition. Bryant-Denny Stadium will be the home of the 2016 Iron Bowl. Kickoff is at 3:30 on Saturday.
Ellie Tschetter, Auburn University
"Fans of the Auburn/Alabama rivalry definitely show hate for one another but deep down there's a sense of respect for the game and the tradition. Although, poisoning our trees was certainly a sign of hate from Alabama fans. This year will be the most memorable because I'm a freshman at Auburn University with a friend at Alabama. We've been joking around this week about the rivalry game...Of course, 2013 was a very memorable and exciting game… The traditions, the rival[s], the spirit and the history of past games makes the Iron Bowl a game that everyone should be thrilled to watch this Saturday after Thanksgiving. War Eagle!"
Bailey LaRea, University of Alabama
"For me, the rivalry is mostly hate with a sprinkle of respect…All in all, I want nothing more than to see Auburn lose. [My most favorable memory was] in 2009. Julio Jones and McElroy drove down the field after being down the whole night to come back and win 26-21. I'm super pumped to attend a school with such a strong rivalry…it makes football that much better. Especially when you're typically on the winning side!"
Ohio State and Michigan
If you want a game that has a lot on the line, this is your game. If the Wolverines win, the East Division of the Big Ten is theirs. Ohio and Penn State will both be out of the race. Number 3 Michigan vs Number 2 Ohio State. One hundred and thirteen years old, this rivalry is one of the oldest in college football history — to many fans in the CFB World, it’s known as “The Game." Jim Harbaugh against Urban Meyer — come on folks, this will be good. Although Michigan leads the series 58-47, the Buckeyes have held a winning streak since 2012. It will all go down in Columbus AT 12 PM on Saturday.
Shihij Takoo, Ohio State University
"I would say the rivalry…leans towards respect. Going into this game with both teams 10-1 and right next to each other in the AP and B1G rankings, is really exciting. It makes The Game and rivalry worthwhile…I moved to Ohio in June 2007, so that November was my first experience watching this rivalry unfold. Seeing Ohio State win that game for the first time has been my most memorable moment; it was the moment I realized how much hype the rivalry created and how important it is. Since then, watching the game with my family and friends has been a yearly tradition and I can't wait to continue it for the rest of my life! I'm flying back from a family Thanksgiving early and going straight to my seat in the student section with my friends. I'm not sure if I've just been conditioned to think this or whether it's a universal thought, but the Michigan yellow is actually a repulsive color to me — it's really bright and whenever I see a sea of Michigan fans with that color on, I cringe."
Peter Bruchnak, University of Michigan
- "Ideally I'd like for it to be respectful but it seems as if everyone else at Michigan wants to hate OSU regardless of whether or not they have a reason to dislike them. You kind of feel pressured to hate them because that's just the tradition…I've been a Michigan fan my whole life but the Brady Hoke and Rich Rod eras weren't the brightest so I've seemed to block those games out and just hope they perform well going forward. I'll be watching [this year] with some friends! Some of whom will be rooting for OSU so it'll be interesting to see how everyone reacts to the outcome. A Michigan win would definitely be a great cap on the season, even if the team doesn't win the playoff!"
Clemson and South Carolina
Another state divided. First year Gamecock head coach, Will Muschamp, will face Dabo and his Tigers as the come off they’re playoff run high from last year. The Battle of the Palmetto State is something that is never taken lightly. Players and fans alike know the importance; this isn’t a game to throw on the back burner. Like many of the other rivalries, when it’s between two teams that have split a state in half, tension is only added. The Tigers lead the series, 67-42. Saturday at 7:30, the Tigers will run down The Hill at home to face the South Carolina Gamecocks.
Sabreena Cole, Clemson University
"I wouldn't go so far as to say my rivalry is one of 'hate,' but do I respect South Carolina? Absolutely not. Unfortunately, my sophomore year when the game was at home I could not go, but I did go to Columbia for the game last year. I'd say in general my favorite moment playing SC was whenever we scored a touchdown and the whole stadium went silent except for the Clemson fans, that always puts a smile on my face. [I] can't wait to spend my last game as a Clemson student freezing my butt off with my fellow Tigers. In general, I can't stand the University of South Carolina. Whenever I hear the name of their school or see 'Cocks' posted anywhere, it makes me cringe…Not sure if this school will ever be relevant, only time will tell, but will they ever be as great as Clemson, the odds are no."
Sami Zerwitz, University of South Carolina
"[Our rivalry involves] both [respect and hate] but mostly hate…Any game against Clemson is always so intense and fun and everyone [is] always so into it but if you’re wearing any orange, no one will like you. [This year], I’m watching the game with a bunch of friends that go to USC from home at my house. Rivalry Week is definitely my favorite because it brings the school together and unites us by our hate for Clemson, also we do this thing called Tiger burn where we do this whole ceremony and build a 50 foot tiger and burn it down."
Respect mixed with hate. Rivalry Week is an event all on its own. Grab all your obnoxious gear, pop that popcorn and find the comfiest couch available, college football Fans.
Tensions are rising.
Ultimate bragging rights are on the line.
Welcome to one of the greatest weeks in College Football.
Lead Image Credit: Jason AG via Flickr Creative Commons