NAU Athletics and Big Sky Conference foe Weber State University announced Monday afternoon the two schools will introduce a new trophy to be played for every football game.
The newly engraved Red Rock Rivalry Trophy will make its introduction this weekend at NAU football’s senior day game against Weber State to end the regular season.
This weekend’s match-up will mark the 55th all-time meeting between the two schools. The series as it stands heading into the weekend is tied at 27 apiece.
"Historically, NAU versus Weber State is one of the Big Sky Conference's most competitive football series," NAU Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics Mike Marlow said in a press release. "Our Athletic program has a great deal of respect for Weber State and how they conduct their business. We look forward to acknowledging the past and future of this rivalry by introducing the Red Rock Rivalry Trophy and I'm sure both programs will proudly display the trophy when it resides on campus."
Weber State has won the last two games against NAU, both in Ogden, Utah in Oct. 2019 and March 2020. NAU won the previous four match-ups, including the last time the Wildcats came to Flagstaff in 2018. In the most recent game of the rivalry, Weber State won on a 50-yard Hail Mary touchdown as time expired.
Let’s watch the whole thing one more time! What a win!#PurpleReign #WeAreWeber #BigSkyFB #SCTop10 pic.twitter.com/AyQg1e6axl— Weber State Football 🏈 (@weberstatefb) March 27, 2021
"Weber State and Northern Arizona have been competing against each other since 1964, and over that period of time there have been some memorable moments that have created an exciting history and rivalry between the two schools," Weber State Director of Athletics Tim Crompton said in a release.
The addition of a regional trophy in this match-up comes in the wake of Southern Utah University leaving the Big Sky for the Western Athletic Conference in July. NAU and Southern Utah annually played for the Grand Canyon Trophy before the Thunderbirds’ departure.
While NAU and SUU are no longer conference rivals, the two schools scheduled a series of games from 2028 to 2039, allowing the Grand Canyon rivalry to continue after a pause. NAU has won the last three Grand Canyon rivalry games.
The annual Red Rock Rivalry game will alternate between Flagstaff and Ogden, with NAU getting the first shot to keep the new trophy in Arizona.
NAU football’s senior day game against Weber State now has added meaning. Kickoff will be at 1 p.m. MT at Findlay Toyota Field inside the J. Lawrence Walkup Skydome. The game will also triple as NAU’s Native American Heritage Day Game.
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