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Texas Football Rivalries

Haley Kurisky
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UH/Rice

Haley Kurisky lists major Texas rivalries to look forward to this fall. Pictured: the UH/Rice game from 2017.

This coming Saturday, our hometown collegiate powerhouses will compete in the Bayou Bucket: Rice vs. UH at Rice Stadium. Last year, I wrote this article explaining the history between the rivalry and how lucky we are to have these two great universities in the city, among others! In honor of the Rice/UH showdown, which has been held for decades with only a brief break, I have compiled a list of all the historic Texas football rivalries we can look forward to this coming year.

Aug. 31: Strake vs. St. Thomas @ NRG Park 

This is a 50-year rivalry between two major male private schools in Houston. To have a high school game played at NRG park is pretty major, but this rivalry is deserving; alumni from both schools living in the Houston area will always come out for this game, and the female private schools in the Houston area that are connected to each school (St. Agnes, Duchesne, etc.) will come out in support as well.

Sept. 1: Rice vs. UH @ Rice Stadium

As a recent Rice grad, I’m extremely excited for this year’s football team. We recently got a new coach (Mike Bloomgren from Stanford) who is already proving his worth - Rice won against Prairie View this past weekend. UH beat Rice in a blowout last year, so maybe (hopefully) this year the score will be a little more even. Tickets are still available for this game, so act now!

Sept. 1: Texas Tech vs. Ole Miss

The Texas Tech Red Raiders and the Ole Miss Rebels will square off at NRG Stadium for the AdvoCare Texas Kickoff on Saturday of Labor Day Weekend. It'll definitely be a great game.

Sept. 7: SMU vs. TCU @ SMU

The Dallas-area schools compete yearly in a game similar to the Bayou Bucket. The matchup is known as the Iron Skillet Battle. The rumor is that an SMU fan was caught frying frog legs before the game one year, and now the two teams battle it out for the Skillet.

Sept. 22: Texas State vs. UTSA @ Alamodome (San Antonio)

The I-35 Rivalry between the bobcats and the roadrunners has been happening since 1991. It is named so for the highway that connects the two universities.

Oct. 6: Texas vs. Oklahoma @ Cotton Bowl (Dallas)

The Red-River Rivalry, as it’s known, is an intense yet fun event consisting of a great football game and the Texas State Fair! Fried candy bars + a football rivalry? Sounds fun to me.

Oct. 6: Sam Houston State vs. Stephen F. Austin State University @ NRG

This meeting is known as the Battle of the Piney Woods, and has been happening since 1923! A few years ago, the game was moved to Houston, where it will now reside for the foreseeable future.

Oct. 12: Stratford vs. Memorial @ Tully Stadium

I’m also a Memorial grad, so this game will always be on my radar. Stratford and Memorial have a friendly (although sometimes intense) rivalry that has been going on for years. It’s a great time to see your neighbors a few blocks over and to paint Tully Stadium in Christmas colors (Stratford green and Memorial red).

Oct. 20: Bellaire vs. Lamar @ Lamar

Another great public high school rivalry in Houston is Bellaire/Lamar. This year, Lamar will be hosting the game.

Nov. 2: Kinkaid vs. St. John’s @ Rice Stadium

Another major private (this time co-ed) school rivalry in Houston is Kinkaid vs. St. John’s. The game is always played at Rice Stadium, which is a nice way to give credence to the rivalry.

Nov. 24: LSU vs. A&M @ Kyle Field

Although UT used to be considered A&M’s big rival, we are no longer able to see that matchup due to A&M joining the SEC a few years ago. Aggies have been looking for another rival since then, and it seems that they have landed somewhat on LSU. There’s nothing like a good rivalry game over Thanksgiving, so this game has somewhat perfect timing.

Nov. 24: TSU vs. Prairie View @ Prairie View

Although TSU considers Prairie View, Grambling State, and a few others to be rivals, Prairie View probably takes the cake when it comes to TSU’s biggest and most exciting rivalry. The two teams used to face each other over Labor Day in a Labor Day Classic, but the game has been moved to Thanksgiving.

See more articles by Haley here and all upcoming events on our event calendar

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