Text Box: The Fourteen Greatest Rivalries In College Soccer 

College Soccer Coast To Coast 
CSN Logo

#1 - UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly

 

The fan base of both schools have made this one truly special.  You want passion in a game then check out UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly.  This Central Coast rivalry is a dandy.  For starters there is no love lost between these two Big West Conference schools which are located about one hour from each other. 

 

The tremendous fan support that this one generates catapults it into the number one spot.  In  fact, the UC Santa Barbara and Cal Poly game has produced six of the ten highest attended regular season college soccer matches in NCAA history.  During the past four years the series has been closely contested with UCSB holding a 5-2-2 edge.  The excitement of the rivalry has been further fueled by the fact five of those games went into overtime.  

 

Last year a crowd of over 9,000 showed up at San Luis Obispo to watch the two teams square off on a Wednesday night.  When Cal Poly won in overtime over 5,000 students rushed the field to celebrate the victory.   Need we say more.  In 2011 the two teams will host each other on a Friday night so it is safe to say that over 10,000 will be in attendance.  This rivalry has the chance to continue to grow and is truly worthy of its number one ranking.

Cal Poly fans celebrate 2-1 win in overtime over UC Santa Barbara in San Luis Obispo on October 27, 2010

#2 - South Carolina and Clemson

 

The battle of the Palmetto State has it all and then some.  Even individuals who have been around the game for a long time have trouble adequately describing the atmosphere that surrounds this contest.  The word battle is very appropriate when South Carolina and Clemson meet each other on the pitch.  Nothing neutral about this match-up.  Contentious might be the best word to describe the way the die-hard fans of these two institutions of higher learning view each other when it comes to competition on the field of play.  In the state of South Carolina no one sits on the fence when it comes to being partial to South Carolina or Clemson.  You are either really biased toward South Carolina or really biased in favor of Clemson.  No in betweens. 

 

The atmosphere at this one is electric and the fan support is great.  When the Gamecocks and Tigers squared off in 2010 in Columbia the contest was the featured match of the week on national television and a capacity crowd on 6,100 was on hand with around 1,000 turned away due to fire codes.  No doubt a capacity and boisterous crowd will be present when the two teams tangle at historic Riggs Field in Clemson in 2011. 

 

This one is not for the faint of heart.  Even when the two teams are having a down year there is no lack of intensity in this contest.  The players and fans on both teams look forward to this match-up which is always hard fought and played with a great deal of heart and emotion that  makes it a particularly fun and exciting rivalry.