From the Director of Photography: Presented for you here is a brief, and definitely incomplete, visual history of the Tommie-Johnnie football series. A visual record of a match-up that dates back to 1901 will almost never encompass all the people and places that made it into the rivalry it is today. Consider the above just a small sample from the ’60s, ’70s and 2000s that should give you a decent feel for how St. Thomas has changed, even as the rivalry hasn’t. Want to see even more? Explore the gigapan below, which allows you to zoom in and explore proof sheets from the ’60s and ’70s.
When it comes to MIAC football, there’s only one rivalry that can truly be labeled: “The Big Game.” Other schools may stake a claim, but everyone knows “The Big Game” is when the Tommies take on the Johnnies.
Saturday in Collegeville “The Big Game” kicks off the MIAC schedule for both St. Thomas and St. John’s University. The Tommies have taken two straight from the Johnnies, and one can bet that the Johnnies will be pumped sky-high to avenge last year’s 63-7 thumping in St. Thomas’ O’Shaughnessy Stadium. (Ironically, the stadium is named after Ignatius Aloysius O’Shaughnessy, who got the boot from St. John’s and enrolled at St. Thomas.)
It’s been said that the game wasn’t as close as the score indicated, to twist a cliché, as St. John’s didn’t score until 4:10 remained in the game. Will the Johnnies avenge their ignominious defeat of 2011? Will the Tommies “three-peat”? Both teams are 2-0, the Tommies are ranked No. 6, and the Johnnies are unranked.
Forget last year, forget the rankings, forget the record – they mean nothing when “The Big Game” is played. But don’t forget the history of this annual battle royal, some of which is pictured above, and some of which is posted here by Gene McGivern, UST’s sports information director.
Tickets for Saturday’s 1 p.m. game in Collegeville are $7 for adults and $5 for students. (Parking spots are gone by 11 a.m., so arrive early to avoid a long walk to the stadium.)
The game will be aired on WCCO AM 830 with Dave Lee and Eric Nelson on the call.