If you weren't aware that previous meetings between George Mason and George Washington men's basketball teams were dubbed "Battle of the Orange Line," don't stress. Yeah, that transportation angle didn't exactly excite the masses or even those rooting for the Patriots and Colonials.
Now that George Mason and George Washington are conference foes, the series needed a new nickname. "The Revolutionary Rivalry," now we're getting somewhere. The press release from George Washington's athletic department announcing the change for the Atlantic 10 foes with all kinds of historical nuggets - and news of a hat trophy - adds to the intrigue.
George Washington and George Mason Athletics are proud to jointly announce the commencement of The Revolutionary Rivalry, an annual competition between the new Atlantic 10 Conference rivals separated by less than 20 miles.
Dating back to legendary debates on the Virginia House of Burgesses, George Washington and George Mason are two of the most distinguished Founding Fathers of the United States. Political rivals and longtime friends, the two had estates overlooking the Potomac River only miles away. With George Mason authoring the Virginia Declaration of Rights, the precursor to the United States Bill of Rights, and George Washington leading the Continental Army to a victory in the Revolutionary War, the two men are woven into the fabric of American history.
Today, George Washington and George Mason are the namesakes of two of the top athletic programs in the Atlantic 10 Conference. As the schools face off for the first time as conference opponents, the budding rivalry is set to take off as one of the best in the nation. In its inaugural year, The Revolutionary Rivalry is the year-long series between GW and Mason Athletics. The two departments have pledged to compete for the Tri-Corner Hat Trophy. Between GW's Colonial Army and Mason's Patriot Platoon, the rivalry's inaugural season in 2013-14 is primed to be one for the history books.
About that trophy. According to GW, it will indeed be a hat, a bronze tri-cornered hat, mounted on a dark walnut base.
It will be worth taking the Orange line even in rush hour just to get a glimpse of that trophy.
Notes: In a previous statement, George Washington announced assistant coach Pete Strickland has left the program in order to be closer to his family.