Commentary

All good things must come to an end

Crunching the numbers to predict which rivalry win streaks are broken in 2010

Updated: August 9, 2010, 1:06 PM ET
By Brian Fremeau | Football Outsiders
Nick Saban Derick E. Hingle/US PresswireAuburn's streak against the Tide seems so long ago now that Nick Saban has taken the reins at Bama.

College football rivalry games are among the most celebrated annual events in sports. Entire regions of the country live and die on the outcome of a single 60-minute contest held each fall. Twelve months of all-inclusive bragging rights are at stake, and after stringing together a few consecutive victories in a series, the spoils can grow exponentially.

The Auburn Tigers might have knocked off the Alabama Crimson Tide in six straight recent seasons (2002-07), but that streak feels like ancient history now that Nick Saban's defending national champions have taken control of the Iron Bowl. Notre Dame fans try to reassure themselves with memories of a 13-year unbeaten streak against the USC Trojans (1983-95), but that hardly eases the pain of the current eight-year drought.

There are more than a few examples of college rivalry games running in streaks, changing hands only once or twice a decade. Which teams in 2010 have the opportunity to flip the script and set the stage for a run of their own?


To read Football Outsiders' list of the 10 rivalry game win streaks likely to come to an end in 2010, including big shakeups for Texas and Navy, you must be an ESPN Insider.

Brian Fremeau

ESPN Insider
• Has been a contributor to ESPN Insider and ESPN The Magazine since 2009
• Creator of the Fremeau Efficiency Index (FEI), a measure of college football team efficiency
• Contributor to Football Outsiders and his own site, bcftoys.com