Territorial Cup

Territorial Cup

The Territorial Cup is a trophy that is awarded annually to the winner of the college football game between the Arizona State University (ASU) Sun Devils and the University of Arizona (UA) Wildcats and has also served as the symbol of the long standing rivalry between the two schools. The NCAA has certified it as the oldest award given for a rivalry game. [cite book | title= Official 2007 NCAA Division I Football Records Book | publisher = National Collegiate Athletic Association | date = 2007 | url = http://www.ncaa.org/library/records/football/football_records_book/2007/2007_d1_football_records_book.pdf ]

The cup was originally awarded to the Arizona Territorial Normal School football team for winning the Arizona Territorial Football League Championship after a season of three games in 1899. As a result, the cup is actually the property of Arizona State University. The Normals, as they were known at the time, were undefeated in gridiron matches with the Phoenix Union High School (6-0), the Phoenix Indian School (6-0) and the University of Arizona (11-2). The first “Big Game” against the University of Arizona was played on Thanksgiving Day, November 30, 1899 at Carillo Gardens field in Tucson before a vocal and enthusiastic crowd of 300 fans. Newspaper accounts suggested this was the University team’s first game and that the Normal squad was physically larger and better conditioned. The atmosphere was one of genuine sportsmanship as the University students met the Normal team at the train station, entertained them at a campus dormitory and hosted a post-game Thanksgiving feast.

Arizona State University records do not document an award ceremony after the first Big Game on Thanksgiving Day in 1899, and the early whereabouts of the cup remain a mystery to this day. A newspaper clipping from ca. 1980 suggests the cup was found in the basement of a church adjacent to the ASU campus, and staff from the ASU Alumni Association recall seeing it on display at the Alumni Association headquarters in Mariposa Hall at that time. Sometime between 1980 and 1983 the cup was transferred to University Archives, then under the jurisdiction of the late Alfred Thomas, longtime ASU Registrar and Director of Admissions. The cup was again placed on display at the University Archives Building (now the Piper Creative Writing Center) until approximately 1992 when the archival exhibits were remodeled.

In 2001 then ASU President Lattie Coor ordered that the Territorial Cup be shared with the University of Arizona such that the winner of the Big Game takes custody of the cup for the ensuing year. President Coor and then UA President Peter Likens signed a protocol governing use of the cup and assigning responsibility for the cup to specific offices at each university. Each year the tradition of the rivalry and the Territorial Cup is celebrated at a pre-game reception for ASU and UA boosters.

The cup itself is silverplate over britannia base metal and was manufactured by Reed and Barton of Taunton, Massachusetts. It was a standard style priced at $20 in Reed and Barton’s 1910 catalog. The inscription reads “Arizona Foot Ball League 1899 Normal”.

Arizona-Arizona State rivalry

The “Territorial Cup” also known as the “Duel in the Desert” is the rivalry between ASU and UA and is among the nation's oldest and most heated rivalries, including the oldest trophy in college football. The winner of the game is then given possession of the Territorial Cup until the game is played the next year. In the modern era of the game, it is played on the day after Thanksgiving (and in recent years on the Saturday after Thanksgiving to accommodate network television coverage).

The rivalry dates back to before Arizona was admitted as a state, and was a U.S. Territory. In the early history of Arizona, a resentment between the cities of Phoenix and Tucson emerged. The University of Arizona was founded in 1885 as the state's first university. The same year, Tempe Normal School was founded as a small teacher's college in the farming community of Tempe, just east of Phoenix. Over the years, Tempe Normal School evolved into Arizona State Teacher's College, then Arizona State College at Tempe, and eventually Arizona State University. Although both athletic programs have been consistently in the top 20 in the Director's Cup standings for the past decade, the two schools have featured a difference in athletic strengths.

Arizona State has generally featured the better football, women's basketball, and wrestling teams. Both Arizona and ASU boast numerous players on NFL rosters and MLB rosters.

ASU has a bevy of bowl games to its credit including two appearances in the Rose Bowl, five in the Fiesta Bowl, three in the Holiday Bowl, four in the Sun Bowl among many others. ASU has also made a bowl game appearance in six out of its last eight seasons compared to UA's last bowl appearance. (Holiday Bowl vs Nebraska in 1998 in which UA won)

Both universities have historically featured perennial top-25 baseball teams. ASU has won five national championships, appearing in the title series a total of ten times, while Arizona has won three national championships in six total title series appearances. Among the many baseball greats to play at ASU are Reggie Jackson, Barry Bonds, Sal Bando, Bob Horner, and Paul LoDuca. Arizona boasts
Terry Francona, Kenny Lofton, Trevor Hoffman, JT Snow, Shelley Duncan, Joe Magrane, and Chip Hale.

The University of Arizona has consistently featured a superior men's basketball team earning a national championship in 1997 as well as 11 Pac-10 titles, numerous top ten finishes, and the nation's longest active (and second-longest altogether, 27 years) series of consecutive appearances (24 years) in the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats' men's basketball team also is tied for second in the nation in players participating currently on NBA rosters. NBA Wildcat alums include Gilbert Arenas, Bison Dele, Richard Jefferson, Andre Iguodala, Luke Walton, Jason Terry, Hassan Adams, Channing Frye, Mike Bibby, Salim Stoudamire, Steve Kerr, Tom Tolbert, and Wooden Award Winner Sean Elliott.

The Arizona softball team is among the top programs in the country and a perennial powerhouse. The softball team has won eight NCAA Women's College World Series titles, in 1991, 1993, 1994, 1996, 1997, 2001, 2006, & 2007 under head coach Mike Candrea (NCAA Softball Championship). Arizona defeated the University of Tennessee in the 2007 National Championship series in Oklahoma City. The team has appeared in the NCAA National Championship in 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2001, 2002, 2006, and 2007 a feat second only to UCLA. Coach Mike Candrea, along with former Arizona pitcher Jennie Finch, led the 2004 U.S. Olympic softball team to a gold medal in Athens, Greece. Arizona State, however, won the 2008 Women's College World Series for its first national title.

Sports in which the two schools are roughly even include golf, where both programs are among the best in the country. In men's golf, ASU has won 2 national championships to Arizona's one, and has won 5 individual championships, including 3 by Phil Mickelson. In women's golf, ASU has won 6 national titles, compared to 2 by Arizona, and each school has crowned 4 individual champions.

Painting "A Mountain"

Both universities feature a small butte, with a gigantic concrete letter "A" prominently displayed on the side of it. (Arizona State's "A" is on Hayden Butte next to the Tempe campus, while Arizona's is perched on top of Sentinel Peak, about two miles southwest of campus). Arizona State's "A" is painted gold for the school's colors of "maroon" & "gold". Arizona's "A" is traditionally painted white. On rivalry weekend during football season, each university tries to paint the other's "A" with the colors of their school (red and blue for Arizona; maroon and gold for Arizona State), while students and police guard each site.

All-time football results

*Arizona: 44 wins
*Arizona State: 36 wins
*Ties: 1

*The historical breakdown for this series is as follows:

* 1899-1944 = University of Arizona vs Tempe Normal School/Az State Teachers College "(ASU was a teachers' school during this time)"U of A leads series 17-2

* 1945-1957 = University of Arizona vs Arizona State College "(ASU became a fully accredited college in 1945)"

Series tied 6-6

* 1958-Present = University of Arizona vs Arizona State University ("ASU became a fully accredited university in 1958)"ASU leads series 28-21-1

* 1978-Present = University of Arizona vs Arizona State University both as Members of the PAC-10 conference, a first tier Conference in College Football, Arizona leads series: 16-13-1

External links

please insert in game summaries table:1968, note section: U of A went into game with 8-1 overall record, 5-0 in the WAC with the opportunity to win its first undisputed WAC championship. ASU entered game 7-2 overall with a 5-1 WAC record. ASU's victory dropped the U of A to a tie for second in the WAC, and third place officially on the head-to-head basis, and propelled Wyoming into the WAC Championship. Wyoming had lost to Arizona the week before (November 23) 14-7.

Source: Arizona Grid Review (official game program), page 1.


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