VYPE U: Strake Jesuit vs St. Thomas storied rivalry coming to an end, Jesuit Schools to collide on Week 1
Last Thursday, St. Thomas Athletic Director Mike Netzel released a statement via the school's website stating that the St. Thomas-Strake Jesuit game would not be played in the 2020 season, as they already compete in different conferences (Strake Jesuit is in UIL, as St. Thomas is in TAPPS). This report was confirmed as the Crusaders 2020 schedule was released on Monday without the St. Thomas game on it.
Since 1964, the two teams have collided every year, with St. Thomas holding a 29-26-1 record over the Crusaders. In 2015, it was announced that the game would be held at NRG Stadium, the home of the Houston Texans, bi-yearly. Traditionally, the game was both school's first regular season match, and was considered a premiere game to many high school football fans, alongside local media, as KPRC 2 spotlighted a Strake Jesuit 28-17 win over the Eagles this past year in their "Friday Football Frenzy" segment. A Crusader win was not uncommon in the last few meetings between these two teams, and that has contributed to the fact that Strake Jesuit is one of UIL's most competitive private school programs.
The St. Thomas game will not be the only change to Strake Jesuit's schedule, as the UIL finished its realignment process for 6A on Monday, with the Crusaders joining District 23 with Alief Elsik, Alief Hastings, Alief Taylor, Alvin, 2019 5A Division 1 State Champions Shadow Creek, Pearland, and Pearland Dawson. The Crusaders will also play out of district games against C.E. King, Spring Dekaney, alongside a familiar foe in Dallas Jesuit on the first week of the regular season. The Jesuit teams last faced off against each other in 2015, when the Rangers defeated Strake Jesuit 38-27 in their Postell Stadium. It is currently unknown where the game in this upcoming season will take place, but it would be assumed that the game will either be at a neutral zone, or at Strake Jesuit's Clay Stadium based on prior game venues.
The announcement of this game has already excited Strake Jesuit's student body, who are looking forward to experiencing a rivalry with Dallas Jesuit, as they share the same Jesuit values. A motivated Crusader football team, looking to go further than ever in the UIL Playoffs, will be determined to start the regular season off with a win against the Rangers.