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Stan Becton | NCAA.com | November 20, 2021

Lafayette-Lehigh football: Memorable moments, all-time history

Every touchdown from the FCS quarterfinals

It's been more than 135 years since Lafayette and Lehigh first battled on the gridiron. The Lafayette and Lehigh football rivalry, known as "The Rivalry", is the most played rivalry in college football. Together, the Leopards and Mountain Hawks have played in the longest uninterrupted rivalry game (124 seasons), playing every year since 1884 (there was no game in 1896 due to eligibility concerns and 2020’s game was played in spring 2021).

MORE: These are the 15 oldest rivalries in college football

When Lafayette and Lehigh met in 2021, it marked The Rivalry’s 157th all-time meeting. The Leopards hold an 80-72-5 head-to-head edge, but Lehigh won the fall 2021 meeting 17-10.

However, there's more to this rivalry than wins and losses, with immense history throughout the series. These are just a few notable happenings in football history that put The Rivalry in perspective:

  • 1899: The Territorial Cup becomes the first trophy awarded for a rivalry game
  • 1906: The forward pass is legalized in football
  • 1913: All-time college football head coach Paul “Bear” Bryant is born
  • 1920: The Akron Pros won the first NFL championship
  • 1967: The Green Bay Packers won the first Super Bowl 

Here are six moments chronicling Lafayette and Lehigh’s decorated pasts.

1884 - The first game

Lafayette Athletics The first meeting of The Rivalry A Lafayette college newspaper previews the first ever meeting between Lafayette and Lehigh

The first Lafayette-Yale football game was held in Easton, Pennsylvania in 1884. Lafayette began playing football in 1882 and approached Lehigh for competition after the standardization of football rules in 1883. Upon gameplay, “[Lehigh] knew so little of the game that only one man had [cleats] on his shoes and the rest of us slid over the worn grass as though we were on roller-skates,” said then-Lehigh football player Richard Harding Davis. Lafayette won the inaugural meeting 56-0.

Lehigh Athletics Lehigh's 1884 Football team Lehigh's 1884 Football team

1891 - The Rivalry meets for a third time at Wilkes-Barre

1891 marked the only year The Rivalry had three games and the first game in the series was not played in Easton or Bethlehem. After each school hosted a home game, Lafayette and Lehigh traveled to Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania to play the third meeting of the year. In front of a large crowd, Lehigh completed the season sweep, winning 16-2. 

1987 - An ice-cold comeback

Lehigh Athletics Lehigh fans goal post Lehigh fans tear down the goal posts after a game at Taylor Stadium. This tradition lasted until 1991

The 1987 edition of The Rivalry was the final college football game played at Lehigh’s Taylor Stadium. 1987 also was one of the coldest days in Rivalry history with minus-17-degree wind chills. Lehigh trailed 10-9 in the fourth quarter until QB Mark McGowan led a ten-play, 59-yard scoring drive. McGowan ran in for a touchdown, securing the 17-10 victory.

1995 - A double-overtime classic: "The Catch"

More than Rivalry bragging rights were on the line in 1995; the Patriot League title was on the line. Entering the fourth quarter, Lafayette led 30-14. A late Lehigh rally forced the first overtime game in Rivalry history. 

After a scoreless first overtime, the scoreboard lights at Lehigh’s Goodman Stadium were brightened to the highest extent, providing light as the sun set. Amid darkening conditions, Lehigh’s Bob Aylsworth passed to Brian Klingerman in the end zone, with Klingerman making a spectacular one-handed catch that would go down in history. The Mountain Hawk defense would make a defensive stand on fourth-and-one to win the game.

2005 - A backup quarterback makes his mark

Lehigh entered The Rivalry in 2005 ranked 12th in the country. After Lafayette starting quarterback Brad Maurer got hurt on the first series, the Mountain Hawks played well against their rivals, leading 19-17 with just over two minutes remaining. However, Lehigh failed to run the clock out and was forced to punt the ball away to the Lafayette 15-yard line.

In front of 16,017 fans on the road, Lafayette backup quarterback Pat Davis had to lead a comeback. On fourth-and-ten, Davis found RB Jonathan Hurt for a touchdown, taking the lead with 38 seconds left. The Leopards would win 23-19, also winning their second-straight Patriot League championship.

WINS: Here are the 9 winningest FCS teams in college football history

2014- The Rivalry 150: Pinstripe Edition

Lehigh Athletics The 150th edition of The Rivalry The 150th edition of The Rivalry was held at Yankee Stadium

In celebration of the 150th game in the series, The Rivalry moved to Yankee Stadium. The Leopards and Mountain Hawks played in front of a sellout crowd of 48,256 people. Lafayette would jump out to a 21-0 lead, holding on to win 27-7.

Lafayette vs. Lehigh: Scores, all-time series

Date Winner Score Location
Oct. 25, 1884 Lafayette 56-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 12, 1884 Lafayette 34-4 Bethlehem, PA
Oct. 31, 1885 Lafayette 6-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 21, 1885 Tie 6-6 Easton, PA
Nov. 6, 1886 Lafayette 12-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 24, 1886 Lafayette 4-0 Bethlehem, PA
Oct. 29, 1887 Lehigh 10-5 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 23, 1887 Lafayette 6-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 17, 1888 Lehigh 6-4 Easton, PA
Nov. 27, 1888 Lehigh 16-0 Bethlehem, PA
Oct. 30, 1889 Lehigh 16-10 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 16, 1889 Tie 6-6 Easton, PA
Nov. 1, 1890 Lehigh 30-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 15, 1890 Lehigh 66-6 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 4, 1891 Lehigh 22-4 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 11, 1891 Lehigh 6-2 Easton, PA
Nov. 25, 1891 Lehigh 16-2

Wilkes-Barre, PA

Nov. 5, 1892 Lafayette 4-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 19, 1892 Lehigh 15-6 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 8, 1893 Lehigh 22-6 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 18, 1893 Lehigh 10-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 14, 1894 Lafayette 28-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 24, 1894 Lehigh 11-8 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 9, 1895 Lafayette 22-12 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 23, 1895 Lafayette 14-0 Easton, PA
Oct. 30, 1897 Lafayette 34-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 25, 1897 Lafayette 22-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 5, 1898 Lehigh 22-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 24, 1898 Lafayette 11-5 Easton, PA
Nov. 4, 1899 Lafayette 17-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 25, 1899 Lafayette 35-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 3, 1900 Lafayette 34-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 24, 1900 Lafayette 18-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 1, 1901 Lafayette 29-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 23, 1901 Lafayette 41-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 22, 1902 Lehigh 6-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 21, 1903 Lehigh 12-6 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 24, 1904 Lafayette 40-6 Easton, PA
Nov. 15, 1905 Lafayette 53-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 24, 1906 Lafayette 33-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 23, 1907 Lafayette 22-5 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 21, 1908 Lehigh 11-5 Easton, PA
Nov. 20, 1909 Lafayette 21-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 19, 1910 Lafayette 14-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 25, 1911 Lafayette 11-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 23, 1912 Lehigh 10-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 22, 1913 Lehigh 7-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 21, 1914 Lehigh 17-7 Easton, PA
Nov. 20, 1915 Lafayette 35-6 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 25, 1916 Lehigh 16-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 24, 1917 Lehigh 78-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 23, 1918 Lehigh 17-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 22, 1919 Lafayette 10-6 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 20, 1920 Lafayette 27-7 Easton, PA
Nov. 19, 1921 Lafayette 28-6 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 25, 1922 Lafayette 3-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 24, 1923 Lafayette 13-3 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 22, 1924 Lafayette 7-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 21, 1925 Lafayette 14-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 20, 1926 Lafayette 35-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 19, 1927 Lafayette 43-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 24, 1928 Lafayette 38-14 Easton, PA
Nov. 23, 1929 Lehigh 13-12 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 22, 1930 Lafayette 16-6 Easton, PA
Nov. 21, 1931 Lafayette 13-7 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 19, 1932 Lafayette 25-6 Easton, PA
Nov. 25, 1933 Lafayette 54-12 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 24, 1934 Lehigh 13-7 Easton, PA
Nov. 23, 1935 Lehigh 48-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 21, 1936 Lehigh 18-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 20, 1937 Lafayette 6-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 19, 1938 Lafayette 6-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 25, 1939 Lafayette 29-13 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 23, 1940 Lafayette 46-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 22, 1941 Lafayette 47-7 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 21, 1942 Tie 7-7 Easton, PA
Oct. 23, 1943 Lafayette 39-7 Easton, PA
Nov. 27, 1943 Lafayette 58-0 Bethlehem, PA
Oct. 21, 1944 Lafayette 44-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 18, 1944 Lafayette 64-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 24, 1945 Lafayette 7-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 23, 1946 Lafayette 13-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 22, 1947 Lafayette 7-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 20, 1948 Lafayette 23-13 Easton, PA
Nov. 19, 1949 Lafayette 21-12 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 18, 1950 Lehigh 38-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 17, 1951 Lehigh 32-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 22, 1952 Lehigh 14-7 Easton, PA
Nov. 21, 1953 Lafayette 33-13 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 20, 1954 Lafayette 46-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 19, 1955 Lafayette 35-6 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 17, 1956 Lehigh 27-10 Easton, PA
Nov. 23, 1957 Lehigh 26-13 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 22, 1958 Tie 14-14 Easton, PA
Nov. 21, 1959 Lafayette 28-6 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 19, 1960 Lehigh 26-3 Easton, PA
Nov. 18, 1961 Lehigh 17-14 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 17, 1962 Lehigh 13-6 Easton, PA
Nov. 30, 1963 Lehigh 15-8 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 21, 1964 Tie 6-6 Easton, PA
Nov. 20, 1965 Lehigh 20-14 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 19, 1966 Lafayette 16-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 18, 1967 Lafayette 6-0 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 23, 1968 Lehigh 21-6 Easton, PA
Nov. 22, 1969 Lehigh 36-19 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 21, 1970 Lafayette 31-28 Easton, PA
Nov. 20, 1971 Lehigh 48-19 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 18, 1972 Lehigh 14-6 Easton, PA
Nov. 17, 1973 Lehigh 45-13 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 23, 1974 Lehigh 57-7 Easton, PA
Nov. 22, 1975 Lehigh 40-14 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 20, 1976 Lafayette 21-17 Easton, PA
Nov. 19, 1977 Lehigh 35-17 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 18, 1978 Lehigh 23-15 Easton, PA
Nov. 17, 1979 Lehigh 24-3 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 22, 1980 Lehigh 32-0 Easton, PA
Nov. 21, 1981 Lafayette 10-3 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 20, 1982 Lafayette 34-6 Easton, PA
Nov. 19, 1983 Lehigh 22-14 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 17, 1984 Lafayette 28-7 Easton, PA
Nov. 23, 1985 Lehigh 24-19 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 22, 1986 Lafayette 28-23 Easton, PA
Nov. 21, 1987 Lehigh 17-10 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 19, 1988 Lafayette 52-45 Easton, PA
Nov. 18, 1989 Lafayette 36-21 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 17, 1990 Lehigh 35-14 Easton, PA
Nov. 23, 1991 Lehigh 36-18 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 21, 1992 Lafayette 32-29 Easton, PA
Nov. 20, 1993 Lehigh 39-14 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 19, 1994 Lafayette 54-20 Easton, PA
Nov. 18, 1995 Lehigh 37-30 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 23, 1996 Lehigh 23-19 Easton, PA
Nov. 22, 1997 Lehigh 43-31 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 21, 1998 Lehigh 31-7 Easton, PA
Nov. 20, 1999 Lehigh 14-12 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 18, 2000 Lehigh 31-17 Easton, PA
Nov. 17, 2001 Lehigh 41-6 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 23, 2002 Lafayette 14-7 Easton, PA
Nov. 22, 2003 Lehigh 30-10 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 20, 2004 Lafayette 24-10 Easton, PA
Nov. 19, 2005 Lafayette 23-19 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 18, 2006 Lafayette 49-27 Easton, PA
Nov. 17, 2007 Lafayette 21-17 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 22, 2008 Lehigh 31-15 Easton, PA
Nov. 21, 2009 Lehigh 27-21 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 20, 2010 Lehigh 20-13 Easton, PA
Nov. 19, 2011 Lehigh 37-13 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 17, 2012 Lehigh 38-21 Easton, PA
Nov. 23, 2013 Lafayette 50-28 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 22, 2014 Lafayette 27-7

The Bronx, NY (Yankee Stadium)

Nov. 21, 2015 Lehigh 49-35 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 19, 2016 Lehigh 45-21 Easton, PA
Nov. 18, 2017 Lehigh 38-31 Bethlehem, PA
Nov. 17, 2018 Lehigh 34-3 Easton, PA
Nov. 23, 2019 Lafayette 17-6 Bethlehem, PA
Apr. 10, 2021 Lafayette 20-13 Easton, PA
Nov. 20, 2021 Lehigh 17-10
Bethlehem, PA

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