There is not one but two big rivalry games this weekend. The first one is huge in the south and is simply known as “Florida Georgia“. Family plans are made around this game. Grocery stores are empty and bars are packed. The next one is the in-state rivalry between Michigan and Michigan State. I’ve never lived in Michigan, but I get the sense it’s the same kind of situation!
Florida Georgia Game
The Matchup: Georgia Bulldogs vs. Florida Gators
Date, Time and Location: November 2nd at 3:30 p.m. This game is always played at the neutral location of Jacksonville, FL.
No Longer a Big Drunkfest: Since the 1950s, this game has been called “The World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party.” A Florida Times-Union sports columnist, Bill Kastelz, coined the phrase when he saw a drunken fan offer a drink to a policeman, and it stuck. However, in 2006, the higher ups at Florida, Georgia and the SEC got together and asked CBS and other news outlets to stop using the phrase because they thought it encouraged binge drinking. The successful effort was led by UGA President Michael Adams.
Quite the Rivalry: These two teams first met in 1914. Since 1933, they have played in Jacksonville. The only exceptions were in 1994 and 1995 when the stadium in Jacksonville was under construction and the game was moved to the schools’ campuses. UGA dominated the series in the 70s and 80s, but Florida took control when Steve Spurrier took over as head coach of his alma mater in 1989. In the 2007 game, Mark Richt pulled a stunt that upset a lot of Florida fans and surprised college football fans around the nation. When Georgia made their first touchdown, he ordered his entire team to celebrate in the Florida end zone in an effort to give the emotional edge to UGA. The move caused UGA to be penalized with excessive celebration. No worries though. The stunt worked and Georgia beat Florida that year, 42-30.
Who’s going to win on Saturday: In a shocking turn of events, neither team is ranked in the top 25 this season. No matter who the better team is going into this battle, it’s always anyone’s game. I’ll give the slight edge to UGA, only because I live in Georgia, and I’ve never been a fan of orange!
Michigan – Michigan State Game
The Matchup: Michigan #21 vs. Michigan St. #24
Date, Time and Location: November 2nd @ 3:30 at Michigan State
Quite the Rivalry: The first game between these two Big Ten powerhouses was in 1898. Michigan shut out Michigan Agricultural College, which is now known as Michigan State. They have battled each year since with the exceptions of 1943 and 1944 due to World War II. The winner of the game gets the Paul Bunyan trophy. The trophy is indicative of the state’s history as a major lumber producer. Michigan currently leads the series 67-32-5. Michigan State won every game from 2008-2011, but the Wolverines claimed the victory last year.
Who’s going to win on Saturday: I was raised a Notre Dame fan, therefore taught to not like Michigan. The game is being played at Michigan State, so my vote is for the Spartans to win!