ULM/ULL is hate-filled love-fest

Dakota Ratley

Rocky had Apollo Creed, America has Russia and we have ULL. Aren’t rivalries great?

Would we talk about the Miracle on Ice the way we do if it wasn’t during the height of the Cold War? Probably not.

There always more on the line that wins and losses in rivalry games. There’s a great deal of pride.

A team could lose most of its games, but if you beat your school’s rival, you’re golden.

I remember speaking to a ULM coach before his team’s season began, and he said something that showed how much our rivalry with ULL matters.

I asked what the goals were for the season. He gave the usual answers. like winning conference and getting better as a team. Oh, and a goal of the team was to beat ULL.

When a game is circled on the calendar before the season starts, you may have a rivalry.

Couple this with general animosity between the schools, and you definately have a rivalry.

Social media has been on fire with  “ULL hate week” posts. Athletic Director Brian Wickstrom threw some subtle shade at ULL with his email telling us to remind the Ragin Cajuns how much we “like” them.

You’ve got to love it.

The whole atmosphere around this game is completely different than any other game this year. The campus seems so much more excited than normal.

That excitement translated into an attendance of 19,544. For comparison, the Texas State game, which meant more in term of Sun Belt positioning brought only 14,755.

The weather for the Texas State game was perfect. The weather for the ULL game was, well, less than perfect.

That kind of spirit is what makes rivalries so great. Our games don’t mean a lot in the grand scheme of things.

Sportscenter isn’t going to cover the game. It won’t get national attention, but for a pair of cities, it means a lot.

Rivalries are fun, and ours is no exception.

Add the off-field drama involving what the actual name of ULL, and we have fireworks.

However, just like Rocky and Apollo, in the end, they needed each other.

ULM and ULL are the same way.

The only reason is we don’t like them. They don’t like us. That’s the way it should be.