In-state match-up between the Cyclones and Hawkeyes is a special one


Iowa State and Iowa have a pretty unique rivalry on the gridiron.

The Cyclones and Hawkeyes are the lone Division 1-A programs in the state, so their match-up gets major attention from border to border.

There are other states with only two Division 1-A schools (Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, South Carolina, Virginia, Washington and West Virginia).

In six of those situations, the schools reside in the same conference.

Of the others, the only battles between what are considered the more powerful leagues are these: South Carolina (SEC) vs. Clemson (ACC), Georgia (SEC) vs. Georgia Tech (ACC) and Iowa State (Big 12) vs. Iowa (Big Ten).

So, when these schools meet, there is school pride on the line as well as conference bragging rights.

Since Iowa State joined the Big 12 in 1996, the Cyclones and their in-state rivals have evenly split 16 games. You can’t be more level than that. During that same timeframe, Georgia leads Georgia Tech 12-4 and Clemson holds a 10-6 advantage over South Carolina.

“In a state with no professional sports, it’s the game,” Coach Paul Rhoads said. “It’s fun to be a part of.”

These in-state rivalries are pretty special and Iowa State and Iowa will have center stage Saturday.

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