Sports Passport: Tally your games, share your experiences
So you witnessed the upset at the Rose Bowl two years ago, when the unheralded Bruins dashed the national-title hopes of the visiting Trojans.
Perhaps you were in Columbus two weeks earlier, when No. 1 played No. 2 at the Horseshoe and Ohio State outlasted Michigan in a shootout thriller.
Got what it takes to be tops?
So you think you've been to a lot of games, huh? And certainly you have.
But can you beat this guy?176 games
Can you challenge steve13300 for the most events tallied?
steve13300 has logged 176 tilts, including 60 at Yankee Stadium and 33 at the IZOD Center. View all his posts here.
These numbers are admirable, to be certain. But come on, we know you can do better.
Start posting and prove us right. Click here to get going.
And this just in: ksmoller2005 has registered, get this, 390 venues visited. Dude must live on the road and be independently wealthy.
Or you had a seat at Mountaineer Field last year when the curse of No. 2 struck as unranked Pitt came into Morgantown and upended second-ranked West Virginia.
Unforgettable clashes all.
Indeed, it's rivalry time in college football. There's nothing else like it.
With what many would call the best rivalry in sports taking place Saturday in Pasadena, UCLA hosts No. 5 USC once again at the Rose Bowl. (And the way we hear it, Trojans coach Pete Carroll is taking things so seriously that he doesn't mind risking a penalty of two timeouts for dressing his team in its home colors.)
Now's the time to relive the memories of glories (and debacles) past, share your experiences and rate the rivalries.
Sports Passport is the place to chronicle all the athletic events you've attended and recall the adventures, be they heartwarming or heartwrenching, or both.
Ever wonder how your fandom ranks against your friends or other ESPN users?
Post the events and venues you've attended to earn Passport stamps and be ranked against other sports tourists, all while preserving your game-day memories. You can upload photos and link directly to the box score from each tilt.
Make a wish list of places you'd most like to visit, and track defunct venues that would have made great additions to your Passport.
Find friends and their profiles and invite others.
Search for commentary on arenas, stadiums and coliseums.
As the football rivals listed below and other teams square off as the regular season comes to a close, you'll have ample opportunities to add to your portfolio. Log your events and see your Sports Passport stock rise. Start now.
USC vs. UCLA
You've read about the curse of No. 2, and even mighty USC was not above it two years ago when it galloped into the Rose Bowl with the spirit of Tommy Trojan and Traveler and national-title aspirations on its side.
Not to be.
The gritty little Bruins surprised the Trojans with their stout defense and came back from a 9-7 deficit in the second quarter to post two field goals in the second half for the W.
And with that, UCLA had knocked its crosstown nemesis out of the Bowl Championship Series title game and reversed a string of seven losses in the series. (Before that, the Bruins had enjoyed a streak of eight victories vs. USC.)
"I didn't believe it until the clock hit zero. All we wanted to do was stay close and get a chance to win," then-UCLA coach Karl Dorrell said after the big win in 2006. "I know how important this win is for the Bruin family. I know that it's been a long time."
It was enough to ring the Victory Bell loud and long.
The rivalry that started in 1929 cranks up again Saturday in Pasadena.
Texas vs. Texas A&M
The "Lone Star Showdown" encompasses the athletic clashes between the state's two oldest higher-ed institutions, and the annual grapple on the gridiron between Texas and A&M is a particularly storied rivalry that dates back to 1894.
The fajita tacos were amazing!
-- armanTD, proving football isn't everything in Austin
Texas has seen the longhorn's -- er -- lion's share of triumphs, with a record of 74-36-5, but the Aggies had won two in a row in the series until last week, that is.
A&M could not continue its streak when it traveled to Austin to face Texas, which had the reins on the nation's No. 3 ranking. The Aggies lost 49-9.
West Virginia vs. Pittsburgh
Milestone games always beg for the type of excitement to match the hype.
And last year's 100th Backyard Brawl couldn't have been spun any better, considering the outcome from Morgantown.
Second-ranked West Virginia enjoyed home-field advantage and looked to have the inside track to play for a national championship. Alas, the No. 2 voodoo was about to catch up with the Mountaineers.
In an epic defensive struggle, Pitt took a 10-7 lead on a short TD run in the third quarter and held on to stun West Virginia 13-9.
"It was just a nightmare," then-coach Rich Rodriguez said after his Mountaineers' title quest was dashed by the unranked Panthers. "The whole thing was a nightmare."
Unranked W.Va. was looking to return the favor last week at Heinz Field against No. 20 Pitt, but came up on the short end of the stick, losing 19-15.
Kansas vs. Missouri
Last year's 115th installment of the Border War (now officially known as the Border Showdown, but either way the nation's second-longest rivalry, behind only Minnesota and Wisconsin's 118 meetings that have determined who gets to swing Paul Bunyan's Axe) was perhaps the most anticipated since the series began in 1891.
Electric crowd and a classic game between bitter rivals.
-- cheifspackersfan, on the atmosphere of the matchup
The Tigers entered the neutral playing field of Arrowhead Stadium ranked No. 4. The Jayhawks boasted an unblemished record and the nation's No. 2 billing.
Missouri hung on for a 36-28 victory and a short-lived top ranking (the Tigers lost a week later to No. 9 Oklahoma in the Big 12 title game).
Arrowhead was the site of the War again this year, as the No. 13 Tigers met the unranked Jayhawks on Saturday. In what certainly could be called an instant classic, Kansas outlasted Missouri, 40-37.
Auburn vs. Alabama
No need to mess with a perfectly good explanation of this annual bloodletting, so we'll let an earlier piece by ESPN.com take it from here:
The 'Iron Bowl' is the quintessential intrastate football rivalry. In fact, the series was discontinued from 1908 to 1948 because of a long-standing dispute over a referee and per diem pay for players. When the schools finally agreed to play again, the game had to be held in Birmingham, a neutral site with tickets split equally. Auburn finally hosted Alabama for the first time in 1989 and set a stadium attendance record. The most famous meeting came in 1972. Both teams entered with one loss. 'Bama led 16-0 entering the fourth quarter, but Auburn returned two blocked punts for touchdowns and won 17-16. 'Punt, 'Bama, Punt,' became a famous slogan.
Auburn had owned the series since 2002, but the Crimson Tide delivered a 36-0 knockout Saturday while putting its No. 1 ranking on the line in hosting the Tigers in Tuscaloosa.
Oklahoma vs. Oklahoma State
The Bedlam Series has been adding sizzle to Midwest autumns for more than a century, and
the Sooners have certainly brought most of the heat while dominating the feud, with a tally of 79-17-7.
-- macs; need he say more about Boone Pickens Stadium?
Oklahoma had won five straight, but this year promised to increase the intensity with the Sooners bringing their No. 3 ranking into Stillwater on Saturday to battle No. 12 Oklahoma.
However, Oklahoma would end up outgunning the Cowboys 61-41.
Michigan vs. Ohio State
If history is any indication -- and in this case we think you'll certainly agree it is -- the Michigan-Ohio State rivalry often is a spoiler, as ESPN.com spells out in a previous reference:
When Ohio Stadium opened in 1922, Michigan spoiled the party with a 22-0 victory. The rivalry was heated in the early days as both have been long-time college football powers. But it got even hotter in 1969, when Bo Schembechler took over as Michigan's coach and upset Woody Hayes' No. 1-ranked, undefeated Buckeyes. Four times in the next six years, both teams were ranked in the top five when they met. In 1970 and 1973, both were undefeated (they tied 10-10 in '73). From 1970 through 1975, Michigan entered without a loss every year. The Wolverines won just once. Ohio State was 9-0-1 in 1993, 11-0 in 1995 and 10-0 in 1996. The Buckeyes lost each time. That is rivalry.
Such was not the case in 2006 during another clash of titans, when the No. 1 Buckeyes escaped with a 42-39 victory over the No. 2 Wolverines at Ohio Stadium. Were you there?
This year's game returned to Columbus on Nov. 22, with the No. 10 Buckeyes winning bragging rights in convincing fashion, 42-7.