The 124th Monon Bell Classic - Wabash Fans
On one Saturday each November, DePauw University and Wabash College meet on the gridiron in one of college footballs oldest and most colorful rivalries. The two west central Indiana schools have faced each other 123 times with Wabash holding a 60-54-9 lead. The teams not only play for pride but also for possession of the 300-pound Monon (pronounced MOE-non) Bell; the trophy that goes to the winning team. Since the Monon Bell entered the rivalry in 1932, Wabash leads the series, 41-38-6.
According to the DePauw record books, the bells debut went something like this:
"In a chapel pep session the day before the 1932 DePauw-Wabash game, the Monon Bell was presented by Russell Alexander, the DePauw publicity director, as the official DePauw-Wabash trophy for football. It was to be presented every year to the winner of the traditional battle. In case of a tie, it remained with the previous years winner. The 300-pound bell was a gift of the Monon Railroad, taken from one of the railroads locomotives.
The idea of a trophy originated in a letter sent to Mr. Bill Fox, (then) sports editor of The Indianapolis News, from DePauw alumnus Orien Fifer of the class of 1925. The 1932 game was played on a field covered with ice and snow, the snowfall during the preceding few days being so heavy that it was necessary to clear the field with roadscrapers. The gamed ended in a scoreless tie."
The Monon Bell game is more than just a game. The week preceding the annual contest has included shared activities between the two schools, such as concerts, debates, an intramural all-star football game, an alumni football game the morning of the varsity contest and other events. Since the schools are only 28 miles apart, the adversaries in the game are often brothers, cousins, high school classmates or good friends, adding to the rivalrys intensity.
The game is regularly telecast live to combined alumni meetings of the two schools in cities across the country and on networks including on ABC-TV in 1977, ESPN2 in 1994 and AXS vTV (formerly HDNet) in 2003 and 2006 through 2016. The 2004 and 2005 games were telecast nationally on DirecTV.
Nick Mourouzis Field at Blackstock Stadium (View)
303 W Hanna Street
Greencastle, IN 46135
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