Georgetown and Connecticut. G’town and UConn. Georgetown University and the University of Connecticut. No matter how you say it, if you are a Syracuse fan or alumni you dislike both of them. Some would say hate them. There are many reasons why you should as well. It is not exactly like their fans go out of their way to make you feel welcome at an away game. But then again, neither do ours. So what is it exactly about these schools? I mentioned during my UConn postgame coverage that I hate losing to UConn far more. But just in general, on an average day, who do you, or better yet who should you hate more?
We first analyze Georgetown. This is the rivalry that helped make the Big East Conference what it is today. It was also one of the premier coaching rivalries in the nation. Back in the 70’s and 80’s Jim Boeheim and John Thompson would battle for hardwood supremacy. Now, it is his kid’s turn. Lifetime, the Orange best the series 42 games to 36. But this rivalry is deeper then wins and losses. This is about two institutions.
Syracuse and Georgetown, above all else, are universities. The two schools and their respective alumni respect the institution's academic reputations. They are both top tier schools, both have very good programs, and both are aware of their good reputations. However, Georgetown suffers from the Beltway ego. It is hard not to be a touch modest when your school is located in the middle of Upstate New York. There is an air of superiority when it comes to someone from Georgetown. It is similar to that of a Yale or Harvard. No one likes that. There are even a few rational students at Georgetown that detest it too I suppose.
Then there are the games. There was the famous last game in Manley Field House where the elder Thompson proclaimed over the loudspeaker “Manley Field House is now closed”. There were the Craig Esherick years where Syracuse owned G’town, especially during the 2003 season where Syracuse beat them three times in the season. Now there is GTIII at the helm for the resurging Hoyas. Does this mean they are just as hatable as ever? Absolutely. But does that mean they deserve more wrath than the Huskey’s? Let us explore.
This rivalry is, without a doubt, the most intense for both schools. I mean it is not every decade you beat your rival in a tournament when they have a number one ranking. This game also features two hall of fame coaches going at it, trying to give each other’s team the business. These feelings of distaste does not come from the attitude about the institution, but really it comes from the feeling that they do not operate by the rules.
Just in the past month I have recounted the many instances in which someone related to University of Connecticut Athletics has either violated the law, violated school policy, or even just simply violated societal norms. Despite all else, people and institutions need to operate within the standards and practices of the group or industry they belong to. UConn, despite what they may say, has not really abided by this over the years. As the show Damages would say, there is a stink about the program. Actions always speek louder than words.
Syracuse leads this series 48 to 34. But that is irrelevant. What matters is the stinging win in MSG, the fact that they beat us before our NCAA run in 2003 and we beat them before theirs in 2004, and that most people hate to lose to this team more than any other Syracuse plays. The surly Jim Calhoun does not make UConn any less hatable.
So where does this leave who is more hatable? Oh you know. When it comes down to it, the face of a team, and the quality of the competition is what matters. UConn over the last five years has been better than Georgetown. Similarly, as John Thompson was the big rival in the 80’s, Jim Calhoun is that rival now. I should have known that my opinion of the team Syracuse wants to beat the most would stay the same despite the return of Georgetown. Syracuse fans hate UConn. Similarly, I have never been treated by opposing fans as terribly as I have with UConn folks.
So there you have it. Looking at it strictly by the facts, you have to hate Connecticut more. Maybe you have some personal experiences that makes you hate Georgetown more, but frankly you probably have 20 that go with UConn. For all the reasons above, you need to hate UConn the most. Let the UConn anonymous posts begin. Who knows, if it insults my intelligence you may find your quote on the side of the blog.