Monday, October 26, 2009

The Big List: Best football rivalries

Each week, Langston Wertz Jr. offers a list pertinent to high school football

Best Rivalries

8. Charlotte Catholic vs. South Mecklenburg: The teams are separated - literally - by a street and have devoted fan followings. This matchup features college-style tailgating and jam-packed stadiums. Great family event annually.

7. Gastonia Huss vs. Gastonia Ashbrook: The teams meet Nov. 6 at Ashbrook. There's a great deal of respect between these rivals. The kids grew up in rec leagues playing against or with the players from the other school.

6. Shelby vs. Boiling Springs Crest: So many families in Cleveland County have one parent who graduated from Shelby and the other from Crest - or vice versa. And these teams almost annually are state championship contenders.

5. Hopewell vs. North Mecklenburg: If you're talking all sports, or especially basketball, this is the best rivalry in the area and maybe the state. These schools are like North Carolina and Duke. It doesn't matter if you go 0-9 against everyone else (well almost), just make sure you beat this rival.

4. Rock Hill vs. Rock Hill Northwestern: Shame they are playing it so early now - the teams met Sept. 11 this year - but this is one of the best traditional rivalries around. The players share a town and a stadium and grow up dreaming of playing for one school or the other. New schools opening in the area has changed things some but this is still as good as it gets.

3. Charlotte Country Day vs. Charlotte Latin: Almost every time these teams meet, like next Friday, a conference or state championship is at stake.

2. Kannapolis Brown vs. Concord: These teams have gone at it since 1931. The winner gets a huge victory bell and bragging rights for the next 12 months. The teams meet again Nov. 6

1. Independence vs. Butler: These two teams draw more fans than any other around and often play for big stakes - Southwestern 4A regular-season titles and in key playoff games. The teams have twice met in the N.C. 4A Western Regional championship game and this year, both are nationally ranked and unbeaten. Their meeting Nov. 6 will be the game of the year in North Carolina and one of the best matchups in the nation all season.


Anonymous said...

No way Indy / Butler is better than Concord / KTown. Sure both teams are better this year and the past few, but Butler has only been a school for a dozen or so years. Concord / KTown have been playing every year since 1931. I went to the Indy / Butler playoff game last year and was shocked how few people showed up. Maybe 6 or 7 thousand. Had Concord / KTown been playing that late in the playoffs, there would be 15K minimum in the stands. KTown is good this year and Concord is rebuilding but you will still get a huge crowd.

Paul said...

Butler/Indy is a good rivalry but not the number 1!! They have only been playing around 10 years and its really only mattered the past 5 or so years. Shelby/Kings Mountain (The Battle of Buffalo Creek) have been playing since 1926. That's 83 years. They took one year off in 1943 because Kings Mountain had a lot of boys run off to World War II and didnt have enough players to field a football team. I know you included Shelby/Crest which along with AL Brown/Concord are the best rivalries in the state but take off your Indy/Butler goggles!! There are a lot of better rivalries out there.

Anonymous said...

It won't be long before Marvin Ridge and Weddington is on that list. Their first game on Nov. 6th is already the talk of that area.

Anonymous said...

Huss v. Ashbrook has a richer heritage than #6 on your list... 3 or 4 but certainly not #6.

Anonymous said...

Correction #7... that's even worse. Come on Observer.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree Concord-Kannapolis is the best rivalry simply based on heritage. Both schools typically are good (this year is an anomaly), and it is SO meaningful to the whole community.

This is the oldest rivalry in the state. I have to give older rivalries like Shelby-Crest and Concord-Ktown the nod over johnny-come-latelies like Butler and Hopewell.

Anonymous said...

Between the two programs, they have won 9 State Titles and appeared in 14 Title games in the last 23 years.
Can anyone touch that consistent level of play at the top?
Game over.

Anonymous said...

I think Country Day and Latin can touch and probably exceed that consistency. Not to mention that Country Day beat Crest 3 out of 4 years. This is while losing to Latin 3 times in 5 games those same 4 seasons.

Anonymous said...

I can't help that Butler/indy are the best teams in the state and could crush any of the other teams on this list... enough said

jj said...

this list wasnt about who the best teams are but the best rivalries. so the fact that B/I could beat most of the list, most of which are smaller - some by half -- is irrelevant. come back in 20 years when the current players have kids playing. if the B/I game still has meaning - then they deserve to be on this list. As is - other than Hopewell/weddingtonEVERY matchup on the list is a better rivalry.
#1 - Concord-Brown
-- and ashbrook-huss should be WAY higher.