Blog Entry

Best college football rivalries 2000-2009

Posted on: April 12, 2009 1:30 pm
Edited on: April 12, 2009 6:11 pm

Did a little homework on rivalries in the current century (2000-2009).

Best on-the-field rivalry: Florida State vs Miami The only major rivalry to average less than a 10 point spreat and still yield at least one BCS championship is FSU-Miami (average spread over this period is 6.22 pts per game). Although Miami has an upper hand in wins/losses at 7-3, the closeness of the games and national title implications (past few years excepted) make this rivalry (in my opinion) the best on-field rivalry. This is also the only rivalry to produce a same-season rematch in a bowl game (2003) during this period.

Best championship rivalry: Florida vs LSU No one can contest the success these teams have had this decade. Four BCS titles between them, and though the average point spread when they meet is a lofty 17.56 per game they have nearly split their series at 5-4 since 2000.

Best rivalry for drama: Ohio State vs Michigan Though the Buckeyes have won 7 meetings since the millenia, the average point spread for these games is a mere 11.78. Take away last years 35 point debacle and it's 8.87. Lump these close matchups together with one BCS title and a TON of people watching and you've got a classic year in, year out.

Best rivalry for homers: Oregon vs Oregon State With the exception of the past two years, these teams have taken turns pounding each other at home to the tune of 17.44 points per game. That makes for a lot of happy alumni.

Best rivalry to leave at halftime: Kansas vs Kansas State This one's not even close. The average massacre in this series is 26.78 points, but the series is close at 5-4. Might as well head for the exits after the first half ends.

Best rivalry for no national title implications and one-team dominance: Army vs Navy Seriously, since 2000 no rivalry has been more lopsided than this one. Navy holds an 8-1 edge to the tune of 23.78 points per game. Players rarely go on to NFL careers. And both teams tend to run antiquated option offenses. So why do we watch? We're Americans! We're proud that these guys play hard with no pro future in their sights. We're proud that they wear unit patches on their uniforms in tribute to those in harm's way. And we're proud that at the end of each game both teams stand in silent tribute to the other's alma mater.

Best rivalry for a state fair: Oklahoma vs Texas This one gets a ton of hype, but this decades statistics don't lie. Although it's produced two BCS championships, Oklahoma has taken 6 of 9 and the beatings haven't been close. With the exception of a 7 point spread in 2007 there has not been a spread in single digits. The average for this high-visibility rivalry? 22.56 points per game.

Best rivalry for "We hate the BCS" talk: BYU vs Utah
The "Holy War" doesn't dissapoint. An even record of 5-4 with an average spread of 10.11 (second only to FSU-UM). And the winner gets to look from the outside in at a National Championship. Take it from me...when I did "Hate Bowl 2008" this year one thing was apparent. Utah fans HATE BYU. BYU fans generally wonder why they are so hated. If this rivalry had the fire that Clemson-South Carolina has it would get huge ratings.

Oh, and just so I don't piss off my Irish relatives...

Best rivalry for false "throw the records out the window" talk: Southern Cal vs Notre Dame
Really. This one used to mean something, what with those gold helmets and that marching band in skirts. Now it's just another excuse to get the Trojans on national TV. USC holds a 7-2 upper hand with an average spread of 24.11 points per game. Sure, USC has ponied up two BCS championships, but did I ever think that I'd see Notre Dame pull a PAC-10 team's strength of schedule DOWN? No. But that's where this one is now.




Since: Oct 31, 2006
Posted on: July 31, 2010 2:23 pm

Best college football rivalries 2000-2009

This game was so hyped they counted dwon the seconds until kick off. ANd it was a classic from the biggest rivalry in all of sports.

Since: Jul 17, 2010
Posted on: July 17, 2010 11:24 pm

Best college football rivalries 2000-2009

The Game
Ohio State

The Land Grant Game
Pen State
Michigan State

The Old Oaken Bucket Game

Central Time Zone Division Games
The Polka Game

The Slab of Bacon Game

The Land of Lincoln Game

Since: Sep 3, 2009
Posted on: July 5, 2010 10:55 am

Best college football rivalries 2000-2009

Best "ugliest" rivalry: South Carolina VS Clemson... we had one of the worst brawls arguably in NCAA history to end the career of a legend, and had several homicides over games.

Since: Nov 20, 2008
Posted on: June 17, 2010 3:25 pm

Best college football rivalries 2000-2009

Great list... 

Missing Iron Bowl which has 1 title (almost 2) but I see the reason for omitting due to a 7-3 Auburn record. But the margin of Victory seems close with the only lopsided scores being Bamas 01 and 08 wins.

Still a good list.

Since: Dec 5, 2008
Posted on: June 14, 2010 8:42 pm

Best college football rivalries 2000-2009

Lets not forget the backyard brawl Pitt-WVU

Since: Nov 14, 2006
Posted on: April 28, 2010 5:52 pm

Best college football rivalries 2000-2009

Best rivalry to leave at halftime: Kansas vs Kansas State This one's not even close. The average massacre in this series is 26.78 points, but the series is close at 5-4. Might as well head for the exits after the first half endsBill Snyder Family Stadium was packed with over 53,000 fans throughout the game and even when the game ended it still had over 53,000 fans in the stands.

Since: Feb 2, 2009
Posted on: April 28, 2010 3:11 pm

Best college football rivalries 2000-2009

Great list. No comlaints for additions necessary in my opinion. I am a BYU fan and their rivalry with Utah is pretty outstanding, but if I had to pick a rivalry to top the list I would have to pick Ohio State - Michigan. I grew up in Texas, and the UT-OU game is classic year in and year out, but nothing compares with Michigan-OSU. I think that when my dad was done explaing the rules of football to me, he added, "Oh, and Michigan and Ohio State hate each other."

It is a staple of football even if Michigan has been down recently. Michigan has the NCAA record for most wins (877, though that could be a bit dated) and winning percentage (.741). Ohio State is one of only 5 teams with 800+ wins and has 7 National Championships in their history (though their last was 2002 and before that 1970). The ESPN commercials below tell it best.

Since: Oct 12, 2008
Posted on: November 26, 2009 3:42 pm

Best college football rivalries 2000-2009

The Backyard Brawl.

Enough said.

Since: Sep 24, 2009
Posted on: November 23, 2009 12:48 pm

Best college football rivalries 2000-2009

It was found about 2 years ago and is once again awarded.  I forget who took it, or where it was found.  I'll have to find that article again.

Since: Oct 27, 2009
Posted on: October 28, 2009 9:34 pm

Best college football rivalries 2000-2009

Michigan- Ohio State. Best rivalry, PERIOD. When we play, our seasons are all on the line, and it dictates the entire seasons.

Oregon- Oregon State?
Decent, but they usually play for anything special, nothing really on the line but bragging rights. Oklahoma-

is a great rivalry, since these two programs are usually in the top ten. (Usually).

Florida-LSU. Whatever. The SEC is way overreated, so the media (more importantly CBS), makes the SEC look more better than it really is.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or