Vanderbilt and Georgia Tech will renew forgotten cowbell rivalry
Vanderbilt and Georgia Tech plan to renew a forgotten rivalry Saturday in Atlanta.
The two teams will matchup for the 38th time at Bobby Dodd Stadium and play for an unnamed rivals trophy, which is a silver-plated cowbell with the year and final score of each game engraved on it.
Unfamiliar with this trophy? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Many of Georgia Tech’s players were confused as well, according to the team’s official website.
“I had no clue,” senior placekicker Harrison Butker said.
“They never told me,” added defensive tackle Patrick Gamble.
Neither did lifelong Vanderbilt fan George McGugin, who is also the grandson of Dan McGugin, the team’s legendary former coach.
“I was not familiar at all with that. You’ve enlightened me,” McGugin said.
It may be unorthodox and have less notoriety than other rivalry game trophies, but it’s still an extra incentive in Saturday’s game, even without an actual name.
“It’s definitely something else to put in your mind and in your tank when you’re going out there playing hard. Now that I know it’s a rivalry game, I got something to tell the guys,” Gamble said.
The trophy was created by Ed F. Cavaleri was described by the Atlanta Constitution as “a faithful Georgia Tech supporter though he did not attend the Jacket institution,” according to Georgia Tech’s website. Cavaleri purchased a cowbell at an Atlanta hardware store to use as a noise-maker while on his way to a game against in 1924.
The Commodores defeated Georgia Tech 3-0, however another fan in attendance suggested that Cavaleri award the bell to the winning team. The tradition was born and Cavaleri attended every game between the two teams from 1924 to 1967.
Georgia Tech is 19-15-3 against Vanderbilt in 37 games dating back to 1892. The Yellow Jackets won their last matchup 56-31 in 2009.