The past 3 days I spent in NYC taking part in the iconic #rivalry150 events surrounding the 150th meeting of Lafayette College and Lehigh University in a football game in none other than Yankee Stadium to a sold out audience on Saturday of over 48,200 ticket holders!
I admit my husband is a very loyal Lafayette College alum. He received his undergrad degree in physics there before moving on to his graduate degrees, including the PhD, from Brown University. I am a Brown U. alum (4 times over) and a Harvard one as well since I was a Science Fellow at Radcliffe.
Very often one's loyalties lie with one's undergraduate alma mater since the undergraduate years provide such formative experiences.
Lafayette and Lehigh are part of the Patriot League, a Division 1 athletics league. Both schools also have outstanding academic reputations and I especially respect their excellence in STEM fields.
The New York Times had great coverage of this rivalry with the first meeting of the two football teams in 1884. Both schools had worked very hard to generate interest and the activities in NYC were tremendous. Spoiler alert for those who have not heard - Lafayette "routed" (New York Times' choice of words) Lehigh with a score of 27-7 and this they accomplished with a third string quarterback, Zach Zweizig, whose name will go down in his college's history.
Zach has overcome injuries plus the death of his father and it was only last week that he was called on by his coach to take on the incredible challenge of playing quarterback at Yankee Stadium!
We took the MetroNorth train from New Haven and, in walking to our favorite hotel in NYC, The Excelsior, on 81st Street, through Central Park, on Friday, we heard a band playing, so with our suitcases we investigated and it was the Lehigh band practicing along with cheerleaders.
The Presidents of the two academic institutions, President Alison Byerly of Lafayette College and President Kevin J. Clayton of Lehigh, got to ring the closing bell at the New York Stock Exchange on Friday with the college mascots of a lepoard and a mountain hawk to accompany them.
Courtesy of the Associated Press
Friday evening we were treated to a gala event with scrumptious desserts at the Museum of Natural History, and I felt as though I was in the movie Night at the Museum.
More great coverage of the game and events from USAToday to NPR can be found here.
The terrific memories are what build great school spirit!