Football Sports

Brophy-Saint Mary’s rivalry revived in season opener

By Thomas Haak ‘23

THE ROUNDUP

Brophy’s football team will face rival Saint Mary’s for the first time in nine years on Friday, Sept. 4th at Central High School’s stadium.

The rivalry began when Brophy shut down due to the Great Depression in 1939 and gifted the green and white jerseys to the Saint Mary’s football team. When Brophy opened back up in 1952, it purchased used equipment from Santa Clara University, whose colors were red and white and whose mascot was a Bronco. 

This change in uniforms would help spark the rivalry between the two schools for decades to come. 

“With a rivalry of this caliber, if your record was 1-9 and the one game you won was against Saint Mary’s or vice versa, then it was a successful season,” Mr. Mendoza said.

Brophy played Saint Mary’s every year for 53 years straight, dating back to 1959. This rivalry would come to be known as the Holy War throughout Arizona. 

This game will also be Brophy’s first home game at their new stadium, Central High School. The student body is planning on meeting at Brophy and walking over together behind the mascot, the Brophy Bronco, on the way to the new stadium.

This rivalry has historically been very even, with Brophy only holding a slight lead in total wins. Before the rivalry ended, Brophy had won 12 out of the last 14 matchups while on its way to becoming a 6A powerhouse. 

However, Brophy was not always beating Saint Mary’s, and at one point, Saint Mary’s won 16 straight games against Brophy. 

“When you think of a rivalry like Brophy and Saint Mary’s, you can’t help but think of the Packers and Bears, Army and Navy and here locally the Territorial Cup with Arizona and Arizona State,” said Mr. Jose Mendoza ‘88.  

This rivalry was not just within football, but it was persistent throughout all sports. Mr. Mendoza remembers that the basketball games between the two schools would become very heated in fully-packed gyms.  

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