Over the course of our independence we have developed “rivalries” with some teams across the country that, frankly, I hope we never see again. First was our love, hate relationship with Savannah State. The Tigers and Lancers met for the first time in 2006, a year after the two combined for just one win in their 2004-05 campaigns. The Lancers lost by one down in Georgia and then won by nine in Farmville. The rivalry continued until last year when Savannah State finally got into a conference, the MEAC. The series ended with 12 games over six seasons in which Savannah State won seven of their matchups with us.
Oooo and then there is NJIT, our faithful friends to the north. The Highlanders…has anyone else thought about why a team in the very flat city of Newark, NJ is called the Highlanders? Of course NJIT isn’t technically “independent” because they play in the (made up) Great West Conference, which is more or less a group of Independents pretending to be in a conference. Thankfully LU turned down an invite to the Great West a couple of years back. Anyways… the Lancers first met up with the Highlanders in 2007 when NJIT swept the series. Since ’07 the matchup has been played eight more times, in which LU has dominated with seven wins. Playing NJIT in 2008 and 2009 was gut wrenching, they were terrible but they also lost 51 straight games. You just didn’t want to be the team that finally lost, thankfully it wasn’t us and the Highlanders eventually beat Bryant. The series isn’t over yet, we still have one last visit to Newark this February.
So long, farewell, peace out… I wish all the lingering remaining Independents or Great West members all the best, but I’m sure glad we aren’t continuing our home and home matchups anymore.