So I’m thinking about applying to an Ivy, but I have to ask, what is the deal with American football at these schools?
Football at the Ivy League schools is pretty comical in comparison with large state schools that seem to live exclusively for the sport. While the Ivy schools may not go quite so hard in terms of tailgating or painting their bodies in school colors or lighting couches on fire after a win or loss (yes these are all things that happen at some schools), they do pride themselves on ancient rivalries and the role their teams played in popularizing the sport.
Princeton played Rutgers University (not an Ivy, but a neighboring excellent state school) in 1869, and this is basically the first ever football game that looks anything like American football as we know it now.
One time Yale and Dartmouth played in the late 1880s and somehow over 100 points were scored - so clearly some rule changes had to happen after that to make for better defensive action.
Harvard and Yale have had an intense rivalry since they first played in 1875, and they end their football season off each year with what is called “The Game,” where they face off and celebrate their shared history.
And if you really want to go down an elite university football team rabbit hole, check out this article about University of Chicago’s very strange football program: https://theringer.com/university-chicago-football-culture-91db25cc0542#.8idee7jg4