What is a better men's basketball rivalry, USD/SDSU or USF/Augustana?

Well, what does 'better' mean in your mind?

The definition of better according to the Jeff Thurn dictionary, is which one brings more excitement and buzz when the two teams hit the court.

The initial answer in my mind is the USD/SDSU rivalry and it mainly has to do with the recent buzz surrounding their appearances in the Summit League Tournament and the buzz surrounding their games over the last few years.

It also encompasses a whole state vs a cross town rivalry in the case of the University of Sioux Falls and Augustana University.

That said, it certainly may not be true in the minds of all and it also doesn't take away from how good the USF/Augie rivalry is and can be over the next couple of years.

The one downfall in even examining the USF/Augie rivalry is that it is most likely to go away in it's current form sooner than later with Augustana pursuing Division I athletics while USF will be staying at the DII level.

So even if they were to schedule a game once that occurs, the level of athlete at Augie will change over the next decade making it a different match-up than years past.

As for USD and SDSU, one could make an argument that the rivalry between the two schools will go to a different level once USD starts taking down the Jacks in the Summit League Tournament and slowing down the seemingly annual trip to the NCAA Tournament for SDSU.

All that is true, but it doesn't take away from the buzz leading up to the games regardless of the results.

The disgust for the opposing fan bases is evident all year long and when they hit the court, it becomes very clear that there is a rivalry game ongoing.

One thing that can be said about both rivalries is that the state of South Dakota has it real good right now with some high level basketball at both levels and the rivalries between USD and SDSU as well as USF and Augustana are probably at their all time high as far as interest and intrigue.

Both rivalries will be in full effect this weekend as the University of Sioux Falls will host Augustana University at 6pm on Saturday in Sioux Falls and USD will host SDSU on Sunday at 3:30pm in Vermillion.


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