Calvin–Hope rivalry

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Calvin-Hope Rivalry
University Calvin College vs. Hope College
Conference MIAA
DIII Division
Location Grand Rapids/Holland, MI

The Calvin–Hope rivalry is a college sports rivalry between the Hope College Flying Dutch of Holland, Michigan, and the Calvin College Knights of Grand Rapids, Michigan, which participate at the NCAA Division III level.[1][2]


The men's basketball teams first played each other in 1920.[3] Through January 2015, the men's basketball teams have played 189 times, with the Hope Flying Dutchmen leading with 98 wins to the Calvin Knights' 91 wins.[4] The rivalry, which originates from the historical separation of the Reformed Church in America and the Christian Reformed Church in North America, operates on a basis of more similarity than difference. Tom Davelaar, assistant coach to Hope's basketball team, once said, "... both schools and fan bases are so alike - and yet we think we're different somehow. We're really just two peas in a pod."[5]


In 2005, ESPN polled its staff about who they thought were America's greatest college basketball rivalries, and the Calvin–Hope rivalry was voted fourth in all college basketball behind Duke-North Carolina, Tennessee-Connecticut, and Louisville-Kentucky.[6] ESPN also conducted an on-line "fan poll" in which 80% of voters picked the Knights vs. Flying Dutchmen.[7]

The rivalry between the two colleges is most prominent in basketball; however, the rivalry is also seen in sports such as volleyball, soccer, and lacrosse.


  1. ^ Reynolds, Lauren (July 24, 2007). "No hate, just heat in Hope–Calvin rivalry". Retrieved March 11, 2010. 
  2. ^ Behm, Jon (January 22, 2010). "Rivalry 93 years in making". Chimes. Calvin College. Retrieved March 18, 2010. 
  3. ^ Beardsley, Howie (January 7, 2010). "Calvin men win bragging rights against Hope behind freshman Bryan Powell's 3s". The Grand Rapids Press. Retrieved January 26, 2011. 
  4. ^ Renner, Tom and Jeff Febus (January 31, 2011). "Men's Rivalry: The History". Retrieved January 31, 2011. 
  5. ^ Cacciola, Scott. "Rivalry's Edict: Drub Thy Neighbor". Hope vs. Calvin: Rivalry in Michigan runs hot and hotter. The New York Times. Retrieved 23 June 2015. 
  6. ^ Behm, Jon (February 26, 2010). "The Calvin–Hope Rivalry: from obscurity to national limelight". Chimes. Calvin College. Retrieved March 18, 2010. 
  7. ^ Hope College. "ESPN Say Hope-Calvin Rivalry Among the Best". Hope Today News. Hope College. Retrieved 24 June 2015. 

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