Ripon/Lawrence football game canceled

The Ripon College football game with Lawrence University has been canceled, Director of Athletics Ryan Kane announced today.

The Midwest Conference game, originally scheduled for Nov. 13 on Ron Roberts Field at the Banta Bowl in Appleton, Wisconsin, was postponed because of COVID-19 protocols. The game had been rescheduled for Nov. 20 before the decision was made to cancel the contest completely.

“COVID protocols have made the game a no contest,” Kane said. “It will not affect either team’s record. It is an unfortunate ending to what was an otherwise successful season for us.” 

This marks the second consecutive season the state’s oldest college football rivalry has been put on hold. The entirety of the 2020 season, including the traditional regular-season finale between Lawrence and Ripon, was wiped away by the pandemic.

The teams first began play in 1893 and have met 119 times during the past 129 years. The rivalry, which saw multiple interruptions during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, also has been halted due to a pair of World Wars and the current pandemic. The teams met every year from 1945 to 2019, the longest streak of continuous play in one of the oldest college rivalries in the nation, before the pandemic halted play in 2020.

“I, along with our players and coaches, are disappointed that the long-standing Ripon/Lawrence football rivalry has been interrupted again this year,” said Ron Ernst, head coach of football at Ripon College. “It is a game we all look forward to as it has provided great memories over the years.”

“I want to thank our seniors for their unbelievable efforts, leadership and character during the past four years, as well as our parents and community members for their great support and following. This is an unfortunate way to end the season, but we will move forward and look ahead to 2022,” said Ernst.

Ripon finishes its season with a 6-3 record.  

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