Causeway Classic Rivalry: From Football Field to Chancellor’s Office

Luke Wood and Gary S. May stand across from each other on the football field, with Herky and Gunrock behind them.
Sacramento State President Luke Wood and UC Davis Chancellor Gary S. May face off on the football field, each flanked by their university’s mascots. (Gregory Urquiaga/UC Davis)

The leaders of UC Davis and Sacramento State are amping up the cross-Causeway rivalry before their universities meet on the football field this weekend.

Chancellor Gary S. May and Sacramento State President Luke Wood appeared in a new video released this week, taunting each other and working out to prepare for the game. But it doesn’t stop there. The two university leaders will lead their teams onto the field prior to the start of the game to shake on a friendly wager for this year’s Causeway Classic football game: The leader of the losing university will make a donation to the other school’s food pantry.

No matter who goes home with the perpetual trophy carved from I-80, students at both universities will win. Attendees at the Causeway Classic football game Saturday (Nov. 18), women’s basketball game (Nov. 21) and men’s basketball game (Nov. 26) are encouraged to bring nonperishable food items to drop in bins at the entrances to the games. Donations — bolstered by a monetary contribution from sponsor Mother Lode Van & Storage — will be split between the ASUCD Pantry at UC Davis and Associated Students Inc. Food Pantry at Sacramento State.


  • WHAT: 70th Causeway Classic football game
  • WHERE: UC Davis Health Stadium
  • WHEN: Kickoff is scheduled for noon Saturday (Nov. 18)
  • TICKETS: Available online or by calling 530-752-2471

Honoring heroes

Saturday’s football game is UC Davis’ annual Salute to Heroes game, and veterans groups from both UC Davis and Sacramento State will honor veterans and servicemembers throughout the game. A veterans tailgate is scheduled to be part of the pre-game festivities, and numerous military and veterans groups are slated to table during the game. UC Davis is also working with the organization Vet Tix to distribute a limited number of free tickets to veterans.

Lance Izumi, MA ’93, civilian aide to the secretary of the Army for the Sacramento region, will serve as honorary captain at the game.

The game will also feature tributes to first responders.

On the field

Sacramento State has won the past three Causeway Classic football games, but Saturday’s contest has big implications for UC Davis. Hot off a 21-14 win against Idaho State, UC Davis could clinch a playoff berth by beating Sacramento State. Both the Aggies and Hornets are 4-3 in Big Sky Conference play.

Saturday is also senior day, as it is the last home game — and last game — of the regular season.

Media Resources

Cody Kitaura is the editor of Dateline UC Davis and can be reached by email or at 530-752-1932.

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