View Full Version : Rivalries
05-21-2004, 01:08 PM
I am a die-hard, fanatic about UNI football, and the more people I find out there who are just as insane as me, the better. It's great that there's a new spark of interest in UNI football, but here's a couple thoughts I have. Anyone who has any thoughts should not hesitate to chime in.
UNI needs to feed their rivlaries more. Sure, we have Western Illinois, but I think that if we cultivate these rivalries, we'd have a bit more of an identity that people could grab on to. I'd like to see us get some competition and "bad blood" between the latest 1-AA Dakota additions, too, because there could be some great games there. That's a great untapped resource. Also, there could be something happening between us and SIU. I say that because when the Pep band went to St. Louis for the tourney, every single SIU fan I encountered in the hotel or on the streets had something smart to say (the band also berated one of their band members... you want dirt on SIU? This guy peed in the ice machine at the Mariott, haha). I guess they're pretty bitter.
But yeah. I'm rambling. Any thoughts?
05-21-2004, 03:54 PM
i don't think there is anything off the field that can be done to "feed" these rivalries. SIU has come into some success and it has created some good games, but as far as rivalries, its Western at the top and of course, "Bear Week" against SMS.
With the Gateway as strong as it is, you can't create rivalries and the only way to "feed" them is if you get some dumbass to make some comment that becomes bulletin board material. another game against SIU like last years and i would say it would be considered a rivalry to me!
05-21-2004, 04:17 PM
I hope that you weren't referring to my post as "dumbass." I'm probably sensitive, though and I give you more credit than that, and assume you were talking about the unfortunate reality of "trolls."
But anyway, yes, you are right. Rivalries are almost always born through pivotal games that didn't go someone's way, or something like that. Come to think of it, nothing irritates me more than someone trying to force-feed me a team's identity. Iowa State has been doing this for years with Iowa, and it makes them look desperate. I think, however, UNI fans are required to recognize things like rivals, and go with it.
Case in point: the UNI/SIU football game in the Dome last year. SIU was on top of the world and on top of the Gateway when they came in to play us. They knew the game was big, they brought their fans, and there was an electricity in the air like nothing I've ever witnessed. The way the game was played out was almost storybook. UNI's comeback is the most incredible thing I've ever seen, and that game is by far the greatest game I've ever seen wearing cleats (the UNI/SMS MVC championship is the winner overall). SIU took it hard, and I think UNI fans have done a decent job in recognizing that this was one of the greatest college football games of all time... it's just a shame that no one in the nation knows about it. My point is that this is the kind of game that can breed a rivalry of epic proportions (the basketball game was like putting gasoline on the fire), and these sorts of things are good for the university. It's not true that just because we're smaller we can't enjoy rivalry... look at Williams/Amherst in the NESCAC (jeez, I'm a nerd).
I'm sorry, again I went off on a tangent. My point is this: we have the capacity to be really great, and it lies on the fans cultivating interest. The marketing department can't do it alone.
Panthers to the Bone
05-21-2004, 06:33 PM
On the prowl-
First of all, welcome to the board. You are a breath of fresh air in terms of excitement on this board.
I think what B.True was saying, was that rivalries are bred on the field, unless a player/coach makes a dumb comment that is made into bulletin board material and the fans pick up on it. He was not referring to your comments as dumb.
I think you are right on that UNI needs the fans to get excited about the rivalries more. Outside of the core fans, how many people really know that Western Illinois is a rival? The fans need to get more people into it and excited. The players will be ecstatic, but the fans need to get after it.
I think we saw a new rivalry between UNI and SIU. I think both sides see it. If you ask SIU fans whether or not UNI and SIU have created a rivalry, I think they would say yes. They are finally competing against UNI competitively in football (in the standings) and UNI is finally competing against SIU competitively in the basketball standings. This arguement was actually talked about a while ago on the valleytalk message board. These are the comments from the SIU fans:
"After UNI spoiled our perfect season in Football last year and again in MVC play in Basketball, I think the rivalry is ON!"
"oh my blood boils whenever i think of uni football after that game. I seriously was moping for a couple days after that loss. So the FOOTBALL part of the rivalry is up there with creighton in my eyes.
basketball....ehhh, i dont know, it just wasnt there for some reason...I think the crieghton siu rivalry compounds because of the tournement, and some douche bag fans from both sides make it worse than what it needs to be."
"yeah i drove my happy butt all the way to cedar falls from st. louis thinking i was gonna see the last game of an undefeated season for SIU football. same thing for basketball. maybe it's just me jinxing all SIU fans but now that i've been and seen defeat twice in that friggin dome, you can bet the bank a rivalry has been born. the weird part is, and normally i'm just the opposite, is that i root for you guys. i don't hate like i hate cr8ton. best of luck this year. hope it's a two team race between us two."
So, I definitely think that there is a great rivalry. However, there is no "bad blood", but just a hard nosed, clean, two quality programs going at each other dog fight. People will come see a UNI/SIU game again this year!
05-21-2004, 09:37 PM
I think there is great potential for a rivalry with SDSU. SDSU is now I-AA and have always attracted alot of Iowa talent that was overlooked by UNI. UNI could potentially lose some kids that would have walked-on in the past....to SDSU now that they are I-AA. They have 13 Iowa kids currently on the roster and 4 more signed this year.
05-23-2004, 11:37 AM
as a loyal fan of the Purple and Gold, I don't want anyone to think that I was insinuating that ontheprowl04 was a dumbass. if you were on valleytalk yappin about how the Salukis are going to win the IAA football title next year or how Jamar Howard should be president, then I might say something....
anyway, after going to UNI for 4 years (98-02) and since then working in college sports, i hear people talk about rivalries all the time. as a marketing major, i still believe that the marketing dept. can't do much because unless there is something like bulletin board material or a great couple games where there is a tradition of the teams not liking each other...possibly getting a little more geeked for that game, then its nearly impossible to fuel a rivalry.
i didn't see the SIU/UNI game, but i'm sure it was amazing and has started a little verbal fisticuffs between fans. i'm sure it will be a great game in 2004 also....
PTTB is right though...i know that Western/UNI is a great rivalry, but how many sophomores or juniors at those schools know that the road team has won the last 4 meetings....that there are players that have been friends and enemies....good stories.....like Hoambrecker being great friends with Mike Scifres (the WIU punter/kicker that hit the 56 yarder to beat UNI in 2000). then in 2001, UNI won 17-14, with Mac making a 40 yarder as the difference maker.....just a great rivalry that people need to know about.....