The Bucket

In honor of hate week, I wanted to make sure you all know every single thing about the Old Oaken Bucket - because it's only courteous to know a little about your house guests before they come stay for a year. 


Danny Hope is 1-0 on the road against IU



Purdue University first played Indiana University in a little game called Football in 1891. Purdue began the domination of the series with 6 straight victories. The two teams didn't play in 1895 or 96 because Purdue President James Smart had begun a campaign to organize what would become the Big Ten and after leaving the Indiana Intercollegiate Athletic Association, Indiana was no longer a required option. Indiana University fans should be thankful for this delay in the whoopin' considering IU didn't score until 1897 and they were outscored 160  to 6 in the first 6 meetings.

After IU had began to make a move on the series in 1899 (6-3), Purdue won again in 1902. In 1903, the rivalry had gained enough notoriety that the two teams agreed to play at Washington Park in Indianapolis. The game would be played on October 31st, John Purdue's Birthday - who had just died a few years prior. Because of this and the nature of the times, Purdue chartered two trains to travel down to Indy. The team, some boosters and staff rode in the first train and the second was filled with supporters and additional fans.

Because of the busy day around the rail offices, a message to switch tracks never got to the right people and the head train collided with numerous parked coal cars. 13 football players were killed on site and a 14th passed away within a month. President Stone was actually on the train as well, but he survived without injury; Stone began to organize an effort to find and console survivors while others ran back to stop the second train. The incident was later known as the Purdue Wreck.

Because of this the 1903 game was left blank in the record books and our Arch-Rivals Notre Dame and Indiana University played a charity event to help fund Memorial Hall - the original on site home of Purdue Basketball.

In 1925, Purdue lead the series 14-10-2, yet the two schools held a joint meeting to discuss the possibility of working together on academic ventures. The two schools formed two committees of individuals from both schools to determine the trophy and then to track it down. The decision of the determination committee was:

'The Bucket of P's just didn't
test well in focus groups'


"an old oaken bucket as the most typical Hoosier form of trophy, that the bucket should be taken from some well in Indiana, and that a chain to be made of bronze block "I" and "P" letters should be provided for the bucket. The school winning the traditional football game each year should have possession of the "Old Oaken Bucket" until the next game and should attach the block letter representing the winning school to the bail with the score engraved on the latter link."





The tracking team discovered a bucket on The Bruner Farm. The family believes it possibly comes from the Civil War, but this hasn't been proven.

Bucket Fact Fondue:

  • 0-0: the score of the first meeting in 1925 - the teams met in Bloomington
  • IP - The first link on the trophy
  • 6 - The number of ties in the series
  • 70-37 Purdue's record overall
    • 56-27 during the trophy era
  • 33-19 Purdue's road record
  • 932 - Purdue has scored 932 more points than IU
  • Purdue has won by 1 5 times
  • 64 - most points scored by a Purdue team
  • Tied for the 9th longest running rivalry


A Handsome Thanksgiving Eve

Offense Disappears as Boilers Lose PR Championship: 56-65

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