There’s nothing better in college football than a competitive rivalry. Some of these rivalries date back decades, while others have been formed in recent years as conferences change and teams conquer new opponents. Here is a look at the top five rivalries in college football.
Top Five Rivalries in College Football
5) Oklahoma – Texas
The Red River Showdown first took center stage in 1900 and the two programs have met 119 times over the past century. It is one of the more competitive rivalries as at least one team has entered the matchup ranked 70 times or 59% of the time. The Texas Longhorns lead the all-time series 63-51-1. However, the Oklahoma Sooners took down the Longhorns in a 34-30 thriller this year.
4) USC – Notre Dame
Like Oklahoma-Texas, it is always a must-watch game when the USC Trojans and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish match up. Despite not being in a conference, the Fighting Irish maintain their rivalry with the Trojans each year, with the matchup taking place either the Saturday following Thanksgiving in Los Angeles or the second Saturday in October in South Bend, Indiana.
Both teams are among the most successful in college football history, with 24 National Championships and 14 Heisman trophies in the trophy cases. The teams play for the Jeweled Shillelagh, a trophy that goes home with the winning team each year. This past year, Notre Dame took home the coveted trophy with a 48-20 blowout victory. Despite the lopsided affair, the rivalry has seen many close games and it always promises to be a dogfight from the sound of the first whistle.
3) Auburn – Alabama
We all remember the 78th Iron Bowl in 2013 when the Auburn Tigers shocked the world with a last-second field goal return for the win against the Alabama Crimson Tide. The Kick Six heard worldwide is just one chapter in the historic rivalry. It is one of the most heated rivalries in college football, as both teams are often among the nation’s most elite entering the stretch run of the regular season.
Alabama has had Auburn’s number lately, winning the last three matchups and leading the overall series 49-37-1. The rivalry will be back in action on Saturday, Nov 25th, in what will surely be another thriller in an already historic and competitive rivalry.
2) Ohio State – Michigan
You never know what will happen when the Ohio State Buckeyes and the Michigan Wolverines face off. The series has been competitive since the first meeting in 1897, with Michigan leading 60-51-6. This year’s game promises to be another game to watch as both teams are currently undefeated with just two weeks before kickoff.
This will have enormous implications for the College Football Playoff. However, it is still possible that both teams will make the playoffs in the end, as only five undefeated teams are left in the top 10 of the AP rankings. You can catch all the action in the next chapter of this historic rivalry on Saturday, Nov. 25, at noon EST.
1) Army – Navy
Nothing compares to the Army Black Knights and the Navy Midshipmen’s rivalry. The teams deliver a competitive matchup on the field, providing fans with a fantastic spectacle featuring flyovers, parachute demonstrations, formations, and march into the stadium. Every cadet from both academies is in attendance, creating a lively atmosphere year in and year out.
Elected officials, including the President of the United States, are often in attendance, further showing how vital this tradition is. The game is always held at a neutral site, with this year’s matchup at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts. The Black Knights took the last meeting in an overtime thriller by a final score of 20-17. The next meeting in this historic rivalry will occur on Saturday, Dec. 9, at 3 p.m., with the Navy looking to extend their all-time series lead (62-54-7). Army will be looking to take home their second-straight victory against the Midshipmen.
All five of these rivalries are unique and historic in their ways. They are always must-watch games and never fail to meet their expectations. Whether you are attending or simply watching on television, you will be in for a treat year in and year out.