In a bit of surprising news, the Mid-American Conference has granted Ball State and Miami “protected rivalry” status, according to reports from FBSchedules.com.
Beginning in 2017, Ball State and Miami, OH will return to playing annually. MAC granted them "rivalry status" on the crossover schedule.— FBSchedules.com (@FBSchedules) November 17, 2016
Ball State and Miami (OH) will name their football contest the 'Red Bird Rivalry' trophy game beginning in 2017.— FBSchedules.com (@FBSchedules) November 17, 2016
The rivalry between the Ball State Cardinals and the Miami University RedHawks is perhaps one of the more lesser-known of the MAC rivalries, but it does have a fascinating history nonetheless.
Miami leads the all-time series 16-12-1 over Ball State, but Ball State owns the last three wins in the series, a statistic that goes back to 2008. The rivalry stretches back to 1931. The last game between the two teams was the largest margin of victory for Ball State in series history, a 55-14 rout of Miami at home.
The game will be played annually starting in 2017 and will have a trophy attached to it. This would be each team’s second trophy game; Miami plays Cincinnati annually for the Victory Bell Trophy, while the Cardinals have a trophy game with Northern Illinois for the Bronze Stalk Trophy.
The Red Bird Rivalry will join the Battle for I-75 between Toledo and Bowling Green as an annual cross-divisional trophy game.