SEC vs. Big 10 Rivalry Goes Only One Way

by Joe
(Los Angeles, California)

Your statement "that biggest rivalry between college football conferences has been between the Big Ten and the SEC" indicates that you are an SEC fan.

As a second-generation Ohio State fan now living in Los Angeles, I can tell you that Big Ten followers universally regard the PAC 10 as our rival conference.

Just because the SEC has been the self-proclaimed "best conference" in recent decades does not create a rivalry. Recall that for 50 years (from 1947 until 1997) the winner of the Big Ten went off to the Rose Bowl to play the PAC 10 champion. Chants of "Rose Bowl! Rose Bowl!" were common battle cries in Columbus, Ohio and other Big Ten stadiums after emotional victories.

For many decades, conference losers did not play in any bowl game--it was the Rose Bowl or none at all. In later years, Big Ten losers would go off to get trounced by the winners of other conferences, but that did not create a rivalry.

Although most Big Ten followers are well aware of the great football traditions at Alabama, Georgia, Florida State, Miami, Tennessee (etc.), the great majority cannot tell you which conference they are in.

Is Miami in the SEC or the ACC? What about Florida State, Georgia and Clemson? Big Ten and PAC 10 fans do not know. No college football fan in Michigan and Ohio ever needs to look up which conference the USC Trojans are in.

Every Big Ten fan that I know considers the PAC 10 to be their rival conference, and visa-versa. Do most SEC fans consider the Big Ten to be their rival, or is that only your opinion?

The arguments you make for why they should be rival conferences (North vs. South) are logical; however, the feelings that actually create such a rivalry are not prevalent among Big Ten fans.

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Sep 10, 2007
SEC vs Big Ten Rivalry
by: Anonymous

Joe -- yup, just my/our opinion. Mostly mine. But, how could it be anything but an opinion?

All I know is on this site -- the SEC vs Big Ten debate is by far the most popular page. By far. And, frankly, it seems to me that most of the comments, anyway, are from Big Ten fans.

And, if you search the internet, I think you'll find a lot more about the SEC vs Big Ten football debate than about Big Ten vs Pac-10.

But, I could be wrong. Certainly you are right about the Rose Bowl being a long time Big Ten vs Pac-10 tradition.

I guess the main reason I say the SEC vs Big Ten is the biggest college football rivalry is because I don't think, historically, college football is that big in Pac-10 country in the first place.

They can take it or leave it.

I see fan passions being great in the Midwest and Southeast and thus the football rivalry between those schools greater.

The rivalry has especially grown as SEC football has risen.

But, they do play each other less often.

So, you certainly raise good points.

Thanks for the comments.


Dec 24, 2007
Sure it's a rivalry!
by: SouthKnoxvillian

For the Big-10 folks saying the SEC is not a rivalry, this is absurd. Go on the ESPN message boards and see who gets trolled the most... SEC. All conferences see SEC as their biggest threat. I understand why non-SEC folks would not like to admit it. SEC owns you! I am a Vol fan so I would rather not admit Kentucky is our big rivalry in basketball. They own the Vols all-time! I've heard Vol football fans say Vandy is one of their favorite rivalry games of the year. Of course it is! I've heard a lot of Vol fans say Florida is a bigger rivalry than the Tide. UT still has a winning record versus Florida so of course they are more inclined to draw attention to that rivalry. SEC=Everyones main rivalry

Dec 28, 2007
Big 10/Pac 10
by: Anonymous

Fans of those 2 conferences do not know that football exists outside their geographic limitations. The Rose Bowl was limited for years to those 2 conferences because "outsiders" tended to thrash the prima donnas if allowed to play them.

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