Whoa, baby! My alma mater, Ithaca College, is going to the big leagues (wrong sports reference, I know) with the announcement that the famous Cortaca Jug football game against the Ithaca Bombers biggest rival, the SUNY Cortland Red Dragons, is going to take place at MetLife Stadium in 2019.
From Ithaca College’s press release:
The Division III football rivalry between Ithaca College and SUNY Cortland will reach new heights in 2019, when the annual Cortaca Jug game moves to MetLife Stadium — home to the NFL’s New York Giants and New York Jets. Once referred to by Sports Illustrated as “the biggest little game in the nation,” the contest will take place at the invitation of the New York City Chapter of the National Football Foundation (NFF).
The goal of this is to try and break an attendance record for the event and officially grant the Cortaca Jug the title of the most well-attended Division III football game of all time.
“As college football celebrates 150 years throughout next season, we are honored to work with the National Football Foundation in supporting this effort by having this incredible rivalry be a featured game,” said Susan Bassett, associate vice president and director of intercollegiate athletics and recreational sports at Ithaca College.
“We intend to make this a college-wide celebration and demonstration of excellence, as we engage both the current campus community and our alumni — some 17,000 of whom live in the Greater New York City area. It is our collective goal to break the current record of 37,355 fans in attendance at a Division III football game.”
So, they’re looking to pack upwards of 40 THOUSAND people in the stadium to watch some Division III players who have more concussions than scholarship money play a rivalry game that really only matters to the people who’ve attended Ithaca College or SUNY Cortland.
But hey, I’m one of those people so I am in full support of putting this game on the map even more than it already is now.
When I went on my college tour, they bragged that the Cortaca game was legendary –and that it was the only Division III sporting event that can be bet on in Las Vegas. When I actually got to school and attended the games, legendary it was.
It’s obviously mostly a huge drinking day for students from both schools, but what made it so special was that your friends were out there on the field giving it their all to try to make all their classmates happy. It’s not like when I spent my sophomore year at Florida State where the games were lit AF, but I had no idea who was on the field besides people that were going to be drafted #1 overall in the NFL.
Division III college football games give you that high school nostalgia where you knew everyone out there and could personally congratulate and celebrate with them after a big win.
The 2019 game being played at MetLife is a huge deal for both of these schools –for the players, the students, alum and fans everywhere. Everyone is proud of where they went to college and wants to be known for something that’s not a sexual harassment scandal or hazing death.
I haven’t been back to IC since I graduated, which is actually a major bummer because Ithaca, NY is one of the coolest places ever and I made some amazing memories there as all college students tend to do. But, looks like I know where I’ll be next November when these rivals head down to East Rutherford, NJ to play what is more than likely going to be the most legendary Cortaca of all time. Go Bombers!
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