Minnesota–Wisconsin football rivalry

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"Paul Bunyan's Axe" redirects here. For the similarly named Paul Bunyan Trophy, see Michigan–Michigan State football rivalry.
Minnesota–Wisconsin football rivalry
Original 1948 Paul Bunyan's Axe (cropped).jpg
MinnesotaGoldenGophers.png University of Wisconsin Waving W.svg
Minnesota Golden Gophers Wisconsin Badgers

Sport(s) College football
Total meetings 123
Series record Minnesota leads, 59–56–8
First meeting November 15, 1890
Last meeting November 23, 2013
Next meeting November 29, 2014
Largest win Minnesota, 63-0 (1890)
Longest win streak Wisconsin, 10 (2004-2013)
Current win streak Wisconsin, 10 (2004-present)
Trophy Paul Bunyan's Axe(current)
Slab of Bacon(former)

The Minnesota–Wisconsin football rivalry is an American college football rivalry between the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers and the University of Wisconsin Badgers. The longest-played rivalry in what is now the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision, it has been contested almost every year since 1890. The winner of this matchup between Big Ten Conference rivals receives "Paul Bunyan's Axe", a tradition introduced in 1948 after the disappearance of the first trophy, the "Slab of Bacon". Minnesota currently leads the historic series 59–56–8.

History[edit]

Minnesota vs. Wisconsin, Randall Field, 1903

The rivalry was first played in 1890 on Wisconsin's campus in Madison, resulting in a 63–0 Minnesota victory. The teams continued to meet annually (with the exception of 1906), and the game became a conference rivalry with the creation of the Western Conference (later the Big 10 Conference) in 1896. In 1906 President Theodore Roosevelt suspended college football rivalry games for safety concerns due to player injuries and fatalities on the field.[1][2]

Trophies[edit]

Slab of Bacon[edit]

The Slab of Bacon

The rivalry's first trophy was the "Slab of Bacon", in use from 1930 to 1943. Created by R. B. Fouch of Minneapolis, it is a piece of black walnut wood with a football at the center bearing a letter that becomes "M" or "W" depending on which way the trophy is hung. The word "BACON" is carved at both ends, implying that the winner has "brought home the bacon." The trophy's tenure ended when Minnesota's 1943 victory in Minnesota led to the fans rushing the field. Wisconsin student Peg Watrous was to bring the trophy to a Minnesota representative after the game, but could not find her in the commotion, and subsequently lost track of the "bacon".[3][4] Reportedly, the trophy was sent to Minnesota's locker room, but coach George Hauser refused it, suggesting such traditions be held off until after World War II.[5] It was subsequently lost; a new trophy, "Paul Bunyan's Axe", was introduced in 1948.[5]

The trophy was lost for over 50 years. In 1992, Wisconsin coach Barry Alvarez joked that "we took home the bacon, and kept it."[6] In 1994, Wisconsin intern Will Roleson found it in an old storage closet at Camp Randall Stadium. It had evidently been maintained for some time, as game scores through 1970 were painted on the back. It is now displayed at the Camp Randall Stadium football offices.[3]

Paul Bunyan's Axe[edit]

Badgers celebrating their win by carrying Paul Bunyan's Axe around Minnesota's TCF Bank Stadium after the 2009 game
Badgers chopping down the Golden Gophers goal post after their 2012 win at Camp Randall

The Paul Bunyan Axe was created by the Wisconsin letterwinners' organization (the National W Club) and would be instituted as the trophy in the series in 1948. The scores of each game are recorded on the axe's handle, which is 6 feet long. The original axe was retired to the College Football Hall of Fame after the 2003 game. A new axe was created for the 2004 game.[7] When the game ends, if the team holding the trophy wins, they run to their own sideline, take the axe and carry it around the field and "chop down" one or both goal posts.[8][9][10][11][12] If the team not holding the axe wins, they are allowed to run to their opponents' sideline and "steal" the axe.

For many years, it was traditionally the final game of the regular season for both schools. It will resume being a season finale in 2014 with the Big Ten's new divisional alignment and schedule for the final weekend of conference play.

Game results[edit]

Reference: College Football Data Warehouse[13]

Minnesota victories are colored ██ gold. Wisconsin victories are colored ██ Cardinal. Ties are white.

# Date Location Winner Score Series
Wisconsin Minnesota
1 November 15, 1890 Madison, WI Minnesota 0 63 Minnesota 1–0
2 October 24, 1891 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 12 26 Minnesota 2–0
3 October 29, 1892 Madison, WI Minnesota 4 32 Minnesota 3–0
4 November 11, 1893 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 0 40 Minnesota 4–0
5 November 17, 1894 Madison, WI Wisconsin 6 0 Minnesota 4–1
6 November 16, 1895 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 10 14 Minnesota 5–1
7 November 21, 1896 Madison, WI Wisconsin 6 0 Minnesota 5–2
8 October 30, 1897 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 39 0 Minnesota 5–3
9 October 29, 1898 Madison, WI Wisconsin 29 0 Minnesota 5–4
10 November 18, 1899 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 19 0 Tied 5–5
11 November 3, 1900 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 5 6 Minnesota 6–5
12 November 16, 1901 Madison, WI Wisconsin 18 0 Tied 6–6
13 November 15, 1902 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 0 11 Minnesota 7–6
14 November 26, 1903 Madison, WI Minnesota 0 17 Minnesota 8–6
15 November 12, 1904 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 0 28 Minnesota 9–6
16 November 4, 1905 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 16 12 Minnesota 9–7
17 November 23, 1907 Madison, WI Tie 17 17 Minnesota 9–7–1
18 November 7, 1908 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 5 0 Minnesota 9–8–1
19 November 13, 1909 Madison, WI Minnesota 6 34 Minnesota 10–8–1
20 November 12, 1910 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 0 28 Minnesota 11–8–1
21 November 18, 1911 Madison, WI Tie 6 6 Minnesota 11–8–2
22 November 16, 1912 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 14 0 Minnesota 11–9–2
23 November 1, 1913 Madison, WI Minnesota 3 21 Minnesota 12–9–2
24 November 14, 1914 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 3 14 Minnesota 13–9–2
25 November 20, 1915 Madison, WI Minnesota 3 20 Minnesota 14–9–2
26 November 18, 1916 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 0 54 Minnesota 15–9–2
27 November 3, 1917 Madison, WI Wisconsin 10 7 Minnesota 15–10–2
28 November 16, 1918 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 0 6 Minnesota 16–10–2
29 November 1, 1919 Madison, WI Minnesota 7 19 Minnesota 17–10–2
30 November 6, 1920 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 3 0 Minnesota 17–11–2
31 October 29, 1921 Madison, WI Wisconsin 35 0 Minnesota 17–12–2
32 November 4, 1922 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 14 0 Minnesota 17–13–2
33 October 27, 1923 Madison, WI Tie 0 0 Minnesota 17–13–3
34 October 18, 1924 Madison, WI Tie 7 7 Minnesota 17–13–4
35 October 31, 1925 Minneapolis, MN Tie 12 12 Minnesota 17–13–5
36 October 30, 1926 Madison, WI Minnesota 10 16 Minnesota 18–13–5
37 October 29, 1927 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 7 13 Minnesota 19–13–5
38 November 24, 1928 Madison, WI Minnesota 0 6 Minnesota 20–13–5
39 November 23, 1929 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 12 13 Minnesota 21–13–5
40 November 22, 1930 Madison, WI Wisconsin 14 0 Minnesota 21–14–5
41 October 31, 1931 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 0 14 Minnesota 22–14–5
42 November 12, 1932 Madison, WI Wisconsin 20 13 Minnesota 22–15–5
43 November 25, 1933 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 3 6 Minnesota 23–15–5
44 November 24, 1934 Madison, WI Minnesota 0 34 Minnesota 24–15–5
45 November 23, 1935 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 7 33 Minnesota 25–15–5
46 November 21, 1936 Madison, WI Minnesota 0 24 Minnesota 26–15–5
47 November 20, 1937 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 6 13 Minnesota 27–15–5
48 November 19, 1938 Madison, WI Minnesota 0 21 Minnesota 28–15–5
49 November 25, 1939 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 6 23 Minnesota 29–15–5
50 November 23, 1940 Madison, WI Minnesota 13 22 Minnesota 30–15–5
51 November 22, 1941 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 6 41 Minnesota 31–15–5
52 November 21, 1942 Madison, WI Wisconsin 20 6 Minnesota 31–16–5
53 November 20, 1943 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 13 25 Minnesota 32–16–5
54 November 25, 1944 Madison, WI Minnesota 26 28 Minnesota 33–16–5
55 November 24, 1945 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 26 12 Minnesota 33–17–5
56 November 23, 1946 Madison, WI Minnesota 0 6 Minnesota 34–17–5
57 November 22, 1947 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 0 21 Minnesota 35–17–5
58 November 20, 1948 Madison, WI Minnesota 0 16 Minnesota 36–17–5
59 November 19, 1949 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 6 14 Minnesota 37–17–5
60 November 25, 1950 Madison, WI Wisconsin 14 0 Minnesota 37–18–5
61 November 24, 1951 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 30 6 Minnesota 37–19–5
62 November 22, 1952 Madison, WI Tie 21 21 Minnesota 37–19–6
63 November 21, 1953 Minneapolis, MN Tie 21 21 Minnesota 37–19–7
64 November 20, 1954 Madison, WI Wisconsin 27 0 Minnesota 37–20–7
65 November 19, 1955 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 6 21 Minnesota 38–20–7
66 November 24, 1956 Madison, WI Tie 13 13 Minnesota 38–20–8
67 November 23, 1957 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 14 6 Minnesota 38–21–8
68 November 22, 1958 Madison, WI Wisconsin 27 12 Minnesota 38–22–8
69 November 21, 1959 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 11 7 Minnesota 38–23–8
70 November 19, 1960 Madison, WI Minnesota 7 26 Minnesota 39–23–8
71 November 25, 1961 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 23 21 Minnesota 39–24–8
72 November 24, 1962 Madison, WI Wisconsin 14 9 Minnesota 39–25–8
73 November 28, 1963 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 0 14 Minnesota 40–25–8
74 November 21, 1964 Madison, WI Wisconsin 14 7 Minnesota 40–26–8
75 November 20, 1965 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 7 42 Minnesota 41–26–8
76 November 19, 1966 Madison, WI Wisconsin 7 6 Minnesota 41–27–8
77 November 25, 1967 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 14 21 Minnesota 42–27–8
78 November 23, 1968 Madison, WI Minnesota 15 23 Minnesota 43–27–8
79 November 22, 1969 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 10 35 Minnesota 44–27–8
80 November 21, 1970 Madison, WI Wisconsin 39 14 Minnesota 44–28–8
81 November 20, 1971 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 21 23 Minnesota 45–28–8
82 November 25, 1972 Madison, WI Minnesota 6 14 Minnesota 46–28–8
83 November 24, 1973 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 17 19 Minnesota 47–28–8
84 November 23, 1974 Madison, WI Wisconsin 49 14 Minnesota 47–29–8
85 November 22, 1975 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 3 24 Minnesota 48–29–8
86 November 20, 1976 Madison, WI Wisconsin 26 17 Minnesota 48–30–8
87 November 19, 1977 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 7 13 Minnesota 49–30–8
88 November 25, 1978 Madison, WI Wisconsin 48 10 Minnesota 49–31–8
89 November 17, 1979 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 42 37 Minnesota 49–32–8
90 November 22, 1980 Madison, WI Wisconsin 25 7 Minnesota 49–33–8
91 November 21, 1981 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 26 21 Minnesota 49–34–8
92 November 20, 1982 Madison, WI Wisconsin 24 0 Minnesota 49–35–8
93 October 15, 1983 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 56 17 Minnesota 49–36–8
94 October 13, 1984 Madison, WI Minnesota 14 17 Minnesota 50–36–8
95 November 9, 1985 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 18 27 Minnesota 51–36–8
96 November 8, 1986 Madison, WI Minnesota 20 27 Minnesota 52–36–8
97 November 14, 1987 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 19 22 Minnesota 53–36–8
98 November 12, 1988 Madison, WI Wisconsin 14 7 Minnesota 53–37–8
99 November 4, 1989 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 22 24 Minnesota 54–37–8
100 November 3, 1990 Madison, WI Minnesota 3 21 Minnesota 55–37–8
101 November 16, 1991 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 19 16 Minnesota 55–38–8
102 November 14, 1992 Madison, WI Wisconsin 34 6 Minnesota 55–39–8
103 October 23, 1993 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 21 28 Minnesota 56–39–8
104 October 22, 1994 Madison, WI Minnesota 14 17 Minnesota 57–39–8
105 November 11, 1995 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 34 27 Minnesota 57–40–8
106 November 9, 1996 Madison, WI Wisconsin 45 28 Minnesota 57–41–8
107 October 25, 1997 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 22 21 Minnesota 57–42–8
108 November 7, 1998 Madison, WI Wisconsin 26 7 Minnesota 57–43–8
109 October 9, 1999 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 20 17 Minnesota 57–44–8
110 November 4, 2000 Madison, WI Wisconsin 41 20 Minnesota 57–45–8
111 November 24, 2001 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 31 42 Minnesota 58–45–8
112 November 23, 2002 Madison, WI Wisconsin 49 31 Minnesota 58–46–8
113 November 8, 2003 Minneapolis, MN Minnesota 34 37 Minnesota 59–46–8
114 November 6, 2004 Madison, WI Wisconsin 38 14 Minnesota 59–47–8
115 October 15, 2005 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 38 34 Minnesota 59–48–8
116 October 14, 2006 Madison, WI Wisconsin 48 12 Minnesota 59–49–8
117 November 17, 2007 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 41 34 Minnesota 59–50–8
118 November 15, 2008 Madison, WI Wisconsin 35 32 Minnesota 59–51–8
119 October 3, 2009 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 31 28 Minnesota 59–52–8
120 October 9, 2010 Madison, WI Wisconsin 41 23 Minnesota 59–53–8
121 November 12, 2011 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 42 13 Minnesota 59–54–8
122 October 20, 2012 Madison, WI Wisconsin 38 13 Minnesota 59–55–8
123 November 23, 2013 Minneapolis, MN Wisconsin 20 7 Minnesota 59–56–8
124 November 29, 2014 Madison, WI

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Bielema touts history of Wisconsin-Minnesota rivalry - College Football - ESPN". Sports.espn.go.com. 2007-11-12. Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  2. ^ "Paul Bunyan's Axe - Minnesota vs. Wisconsin - University of Minnesota Official Athletic Site". Gophersports.com. Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  3. ^ a b Doherty, Justin (2005). Tales from the Wisconsin Badgers. Sports Publishing. p. 104. ISBN 1582614083. Retrieved July 15, 2013. 
  4. ^ 1 second ago. "Precursor to the Axe - UWBadgers.com - The Official Athletic Site of the Wisconsin Badgers". UWBadgers.com. Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  5. ^ a b Scott Dochterman. "Traveling trophies woven into Big Ten football fabric (with poll, video)". TheGazette. Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  6. ^ Doherty, Justin (2005). Tales from the Wisconsin Badgers. Sports Publishing. p. 105. ISBN 1582614083. Retrieved July 15, 2013. 
  7. ^ by (2003-11-19). "¡ Original Axe headed to Hall of Fame". The Badger Herald. Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  8. ^ Fox Sports (2013-11-19). "badgers-gophers-rivalry-gets-boost-as-both-teams-good | FOX Sports on MSN". Foxsportswisconsin.com. Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  9. ^ Bennett, Brian (2014-05-06). "Big Ten weekend rewind: Week 13 - ESPN". Espn.go.com. Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  10. ^ "Countdown to end begins for Metrodome". kare11.com. 2013-08-09. Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  11. ^ 1 second ago. "Former Badgers Recall Axe Rivalry - UWBadgers.com - The Official Athletic Site of the Wisconsin Badgers". UWBadgers.com. Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  12. ^ "Badgers football: Backfield tandem runs wild — and wildcat — over Gophers : Sports". Host.madison.com. 2012-10-20. Retrieved 2014-06-06. 
  13. ^ "Series History: Wisconsin vs. Minnesota". College Football Data Warehouse. Retrieved June 5, 2014. 

External links[edit]