Hampden–Sydney vs. Randolph–Macon rivalry
|Hampden–Sydney vs. Randolph–Macon rivalry|
|Hampden–Sydney Tigers||Randolph–Macon Yellow Jackets|
|Series||Hampden–Sydney leads 61–47–11|
|Trophy||The Game Ball|
|Last Meeting||November 16, 2013|
|Hampden-Sydney 28 Randolph-Macon 26|
|Hampden–Sydney (61)||Randolph–Macon (47)|
The Hampden–Sydney vs. Randolph–Macon rivalry is a sports rivalry between the Hampden–Sydney College Tigers and the Randolph–Macon College Yellow Jackets. The college football rivalry between the NCAA Division III schools, often known simply as "The Game," dates to 1893 and has been called the oldest small-school rivalry in the Southern United States. The rivalry now crosses all sports, with the men's basketball series in particular gaining national attention.
The college football rivalry between Hampden–Sydney College and Randolph–Macon College dates to 1893. The game was played on Hampden-Sydney's campus, as the previous year President Richard McIlwaine had banned the team from traveling to keep them from "vicious temptations and surroundings"; Randolph-Macon was one of the only teams willing to travel to Hampden-Sydney without potential reciprocation. Randolph-Macon won the game 12-6. Since then, the two teams have met 119 times in what has been called the South's oldest small-school rivalry. As of 2013[update], Hampden–Sydney leads the series 61–47–11 with Hampden-Sydney winning the most recent matchup in 2013 .
Known to fans simply as "The Game", it is by far the highest profile matchup on either team's schedule. It is played in late November at the end of the football season. It often decides the champion of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC). Being only 78 miles from each other and within an hour of Richmond, Virginia, the two NCAA Division III non-scholarship schools overlap in their recruiting pool, heightening the rivalry particularly in Richmond, where thousands of alumni from both colleges reside. The year-round nature of the rivalry has led fans to consider "The Game" the highlight of the schedule.
While the football matchup has the most history, the rivalry has extended across all sports in which the schools compete, and since the 1990s the men's basketball series has gained national attention. Since that time both schools have been national Division III contenders, with both ranked in the top ten in multiple years. As such, the games often have championship implications for one or both teams. In 2003 the #1 Yellow Jackets beat the #3 Tigers in a game that sold out weeks prior; in 2007 Hampden-Sydney derailed Randolph-Macon's postseason hopes with a playoff victory after being swept in the regular season. Both teams were in the top ten in 2004 when the #8 Yellow Jackets upset the undefeated, first-ranked Tigers.
- Castrodale, Jelisa (November 12, 2010). "Small Schools, But Maybe Biggest Rivalry". NBC Sports.
- Preston, Chris (July 8, 2008). "Oldest small-school football rivalry in the south now 'goes across all sports'". ESPN.
- Van Wazer, Will (November 13, 2010). "Hampden-Sydney defeats Randolph-Macon 31-28". Richmond Times-Dispatch.
- Hampden-Sydney Sports Information (November 14, 2009). "Week Eleven: #15 Hampden-Sydney @ Randolph-Macon College (11/14/09)" (PDF). Hampden–Sydney College.