Once again sitting atop the national college ultimate rankings, UW-Madison's men's club, the Hodags, have compiled a 32-1 record going into this weekend's College Easterns tournament in Washington, D.C.
Dominating college ultimate is nothing new for the Hodags, who won the Ultimate Players Association national college title in 2003 and lost in the finals to Florida last year. They failed to avenge that loss in a rematch on Feb. 11 in Las Vegas, but a final score of 12-11 ensures the rivalry is still very much alive.
But a more enduring rivalry exists between Wisconsin and Northfield, Minnesota's Carleton College. At Carleton, ultimate is the sport that matters most and its team has played Wisconsin for the Central Region title every year for a decade, if not longer. The two teams met each other recently at the Centex tourney in Austin, Texas, and the intensity of the rivalry is obvious in the level of play and color of language found in the video below.
Parts of the video should remove all doubt that ultimate is an extremely competitive, athletic sport that long ago shrugged off its reputation as a barefoot hippie endeavor. In the video, the Hodags are in black and Carleton (known as CUT) is in red.
The Hodags' pursuit of the national title begins on April 21 at the Lake Superior Sectionals in Whitewater, followed by Central Regionals in Decorah, Iowa, on May 5 and 6. Nationals are in Columbus, Ohio, on May 25-27.
For more information on the Hodags, including some commentary on their tournaments this season, see hodags.org.