For the 122nd time, the DePauw University Tigers will square off with the Wabash College Little Giants in the Monon Bell Game.
Monon is one of the greatest traditions at DePauw, and the most well known rivalry in DIII college football. Wabash currently holds a 59-53-9 lead over DePauw.
In recent years, the Tigers has not faired well against the Little Giants. The last time DePauw beat Wabash was in 2008. Since then the team has seen its fair share of ups and downs.
“In 2012 our program had been marked by 6 head coaches in 9 years,” said Stevie Baker-Watson, director of athletics and recreational sports.
Over the last several years, “Wabash has been on the rise,” according to Baker-Watson.
However, Baker-Watson believes that, "[DePauw] will not be out-coached on Saturday."
DePauw head football coach Bill Lynch echoes Baker-Watson, asserting that the Tigers will be able to hold their own on the field.
“We’ve made great improvement,” Lynch said.
As head coach for DePauw for a year in 2004, Lynch was able to bring home the Bell. After taking time to coach other schools, including a stint as head coach for Indiana University, Lynch returned to DePauw in 2013.
He reentered the scene after a tough season in 2012, a time when the football program was struggling. Still Lynch was confident he could get them back on top.
“I’m really happy for the 19 seniors that we have,” Lynch said, “They were here for that year in 2012.”
Saturday is important not just because the Bell is on the line, but also because both DePauw and Wabash are competing for the North Coast Athletic Conference Championship.
“This is the best chance that we’ve had to win the Monon Bell,” said senior defensive back Adam Folta.
Folta played during the tumultuous 2012 season and said the coaching staff that Lynch brought on has well equipped the Tigers for the Bell this year.
“The program was in shambles, we won two games that year,” Folta said, “The [new coaching staff] sparked the turn around.”
As for DePauw’s chances? Folta is confident.
“We are a championship team," he said.