A Rivalry for the Ages

Peddie School and Blair Academy represent the oldest prep school rivalry in New Jersey.

Except for 1944, when a polio outbreak at Peddie canceled the game, the Peddie Falcons and Blair Buccaneers have faced off in football every year since 1903. The matchup eventually expanded to other sports, with the annual Blair Day now including bouts in soccer, cross country, filed hockey and tennis, all on the same day.

Established in 1988, the Potter-Kelley Cub is awarded to the school that wins the most athletic events during the annual face-off between the two schools, with each match by boys and girls at all levels counting equally.

Representing sportsmanship and competition, the cup is named for F. Edward Potter, Jr., former headmaster of Peddie, and James R. Kelley, former headmaster of Blair. Since the cup was established, Peddie has won 18 times, lost eight, and there have been three ties. For more than 100 years, athletes have savored a win against Blair. “You could lose every ballgame, but if you beat them, you could make your season,” said football player Frank Bradley, Class of 1943.

On Peddie’s campus, the rivalry has spurred the much-anticipated Blair Week, the most spirited week of the year. Campus is decorated in blue and gold, dormitories compete to see who can hang the most inventive banner, and each day of the week features themed dress up days. A pep rally and bonfire highlight the night before the contests.

Because early football games often resulted in the tearing down of goal posts, fighting, and damage to school property, Peddie and Blair drew up the Peddie-Blair Agreement in 1935. The agreement, the spirit of which remains but the specific rules no longer enforced, received national publicity at the time for its code of sportsmanship and was used as a model at other schools.

The agreement read:

  1. The supporters of the defeated team remain in the stands while the victors with band and supporters march off the field, marching around it if they wish.
  2. The trophy for the game will be the football used in the contest. The goal posts are to remain unmolested. The victorious team shall retain the football. In case of a tie, the visiting team is to have the trophy.
  3. The supporters of the losing team shall remain in their portion of the stands and sing their school song after the victors have left the field.