Thunderbirds and Bengals restart rivalry

Published: Friday, Oct. 25 2013 7:50 p.m. MDT

CEDAR CITY — Southern Utah and Idaho State will rekindle a rivalry that has been dormant for nearly a decade this Saturday when the two teams meet in a Big Sky Conference match-up in Eccles Coliseum.

Southern Utah will be looking to bounce back from a 34-10 loss at Eastern Washington last Saturday. The Thunderbirds were unable to capitalize on a couple of early breaks in that game and Eastern Washington took advantage of three turnovers in avenging a 30-27 loss to the Thunderbirds in Cedar City last season.

The Bengals, who were coming off a 40-26 home win over Northern Colorado for their first Big Sky victory this year, lost a 39-30 decision at Northern Arizona last week.

The two teams squared off every year from 1997 to 2005 but this will be the first time they have faced each other since the '05 season. In the meantime ISU's program has struggled mightily. The Bengals won just five games from 2007 to 2012.

Idaho State holds a 9-4-1 advantage in the series, including a 38-13 home win the last time the teams met, in the 2005 season-opener.

The Thunderbirds' last win came in Cedar City in the 2004 season-finale when SUU?prevailed, 45-31. Just four of the 14 previous games in the series have been played in Cedar City, where the Thunderbirds hold a 2-1-1 edge over the Bengals.

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