Game kicks off rivalry

Faith Moldan

Faith Moldan

Last spring representatives from SDSU and NDSU met at the border marker separating South Dakota from North Dakota. That is when it all began.

SDSU President Peggy Gordan Miller stole the NDSU flag and then headed for Brookings.

When SDSU and NDSU made their respective decisions to make the move to Division I, many historical and familiar rivals were lost to each team.

NDSU approached SDSU with the idea of creating a rivalry between the two schools. Part of the idea included a traveling trophy that would be modeled after the border marker.

SDSU Student Association President Amanda Mattingly said the school administration was initially apprehensive, but soon supported the rivalry.

“You’re taking a first step; you’re being the pioneers that your ancestors were,” Miller said. “You have the history of it and you know that great success comes from courage and determination and quality.”

The schools chose this weekend’s Beef Bowl game to officially start the rivalry. Festivities before and after the game include the Backer’s luncheon Wednesday at noon at Cubby’s Banquet Hall where the Dakota Marker trophy will be unveiled. The trophy will be presented after the game. Dakota Marker keychains will be given away at the begining of the game. Saturday’s game is also being televised.

“I think absolutely the students hit this one on the head,” said athletic director Fred Oien. “It’s got appropriateness, it represents the history of our two states (and) it marks borders, which is part of a rivalry. They couldn’t have picked a better symbol.”

The Bison and the Jackrabbits have played football against each other 90 times since 1903, and NDSU leads the series 49-36-5.