Top 50 (ish) Major College Football Rivalry Trophies: Part 1

More than 60 major college football trophies are out there, just itchin’ to be broken down on a criterion-by-criterion basis and judged. Break out the metaphorical Aveeno. They need itch no more.

Below is a countdown of the Top 48 rivalry trophy game trophies, ranked in a three-part system of these factors: originality, tradition and Sheer Awesomness. See here for more details, but bottom line is that number at the far right is the total score (L-R: scores are for originality, tradition and Sheer Awesomeness)

46.

Governor’s Cup Kentucky-Louisville 1994 1 2 4 7

By far looks the most awesome of the three rivalry series governor’s cups nationwide. But such an unoriginal premise….

(Year in italics marks first year awarded was given)

45.

Victory Cannon Central Michigan-Western Michigan 2011 2 3 2 7

Already was a trophy w/ “victory” in its name out there. And others involving a cannon.

(PS – The scoring above works like this: originality 2 

 + tradition 3

+ Sheer Awesomeness 2 = Total Score of 7 [of maximum of 15] )

44.

Legends Trophy Notre Dame-Stanford 1989 3 2 3 8

Leave the beautiful, symbolic hybrids of Irish crystal and California redwood to the art museums.

43.

Platypus Trophy Oregon-Oregon State 1959 5 2 1 8

Not a game trophy; goes to alumni associations instead.

42.

Apple Cup Washington-Washington State 1962 2 3 3 8

Conceptually, this is just such low-hanging fruit, state of Washington.

And he doesn't mind AT ALL.
Not that he minds AT ALL.

41.

Jefferson-Eppes Florida State-Virginia 1996 2 4 2 8

Elegant, yes. Awesome? No.

40. and 39. (PS: Sorry, I’m an irrational maniac with these tandem groupings. I know.)

Governor’s Cup Georgia-Georgia Tech 1995 2 4 2 8
Governor’s Cup Kansas-Kansas State 1969 2 4 2 8

Sigh. Yet another Governor’s Cup. Someone needs to legislate a limit here.

38.

Bronze Stalk Ball State-Northern Illinois 2008 3 4 1 8

Sorry, but I’m not playing even an ounce harder for the propsect of winning a giant corn and neither should you.

37.

Old Wagon Wheel BYU-Utah State 1948 2 2 4 8

These Westerners probably had no idea they stole the wagon trophy motif from Ohio. So they get a little slack in the Originality department.

36.

Paul Bunyan Michigan-Michigan State 1953 2 3 4 9

A man’s man artifact, but the idea was obvioiusly cribbed from Wisconsin-Minnesota, and the Bunyan myth has no direct tie to either program.

35.

FOY-ODK Sportsmanship Trophy Alabama-Auburn 1948 4 4 1 9

As a symbol of good sportsmanship, meant to whitewash the Dixie-scorching vitriol that defines this titanic rivalry. Former Auburn athletic director David Housel has “Beat Bama” engraved on his wedding ring.

34.

Milk Can Boise State-Fresno State 2006 5 2 2 9

Done more for the sake of local dairy producers than for the students themselves.

33.

Ram-Falcon Air Force-Colorado State 1980 2 4 3 9

Air Force’s mascot is the falcon; Colorado State’s the ram. So carve a falcon fighting a ram on top of a block of wood. There are worse ideas.

32.

Don Shula Award Florida Atlantic-Florida International 2002 5 2 2 9

Why Don Shula’s immaculate and iconic mane of hair isn’t showcased somewhere, somehow, on this trophy I will never understand. What wasted opportunity.

The Hair married an Arkansan.

31.

Silver Spade UTEP-New Mexico State 1955 3 3 3 9

Love the spade, but can’t dig a more recent add-on that was called “The SONIC® ® America’s Drive-In® Battle of I-10 Trophy.”

30.

Okefenokee Oar Florida-Georgia 2009 5 2 3 10

Anonymously donated 10-foot oar cut from old swamp tree. Soooo close to being an actual surfboard.

29.

Heroes Trophy Nebraska-Iowa 2011 4 4 2 10

Great concept in shining a light on local heroes.

28.

Territorial Cup Arizona-Arizona State 1899 1 5 4 10

Oldest awarded trophy in college football.

27.

O’Rourke-McFadden Boston College-Clemson 2008 4 3 3 10

Accompanying leather helmets cooler than the grump-face trophy itself.

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26.

Chancellor’s Spurs Texas Tech-Texas 1996 4 3 3 10

Simply no limit on the athletic Texan’s appetite for cowboy-inspired paraphernalia.

25.

Bedlam Bell Oklahoma-Oklahoma State 1966 2 5 3 10

Better when the actual bell clapper was the traveling trophy.

 


 

Go here for the Top 24 trophies.

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