War of the Rose Bowl: Edmonds couple on opposite sides in Monday’s annual football classic

Renee and David Kaufer will be true to their schools on Monday.

Throughout their 14-year marriage, David and Renee Kaufer have always shared a love of college and professional football. But when it comes to watching this year’s Rose Bowl game, the Edmonds couple will literally go their separate ways.

David, a 1987 University of Oregon graduate who owns a marketing firm, describes himself as an “over the top” Ducks fan. Renee, a 1989 Wisconsin grad who works at the Gates Foundation, loves her Badgers. So on Monday, Renee will be in Pasadena, wearing red and cheering in the Wisconsin alumni section of the Rose Bowl, while David will be in his green and gold, hosting Oregon fans at the couple’s Edmonds home.

“If we were together on Jan. 2, one of us would be cranky, and it’s hard for the other person to celebrate,” said Renee. “This way, one of us can celebrate properly.”

Besides, David has traveled the past two years to watch his beloved Ducks play — heading to the Rose Bowl in 2010 and to Phoenix for the BCS championship last year. They agreed it was only fair that Renee had a chance to represent her team in person.

So she flew to Pasadena Sunday morning, and will meet up with two of her Wisconsin sorority sisters for the 10:30 a.m. Badger tailgate party Monday morning outside the stadium. In true Wisconsin fashion, she’ll enjoy the beer garden and the cheese and bratwurst stations, listen to the polka band and do the chicken dance. Then, “I’ll be sitting with the Badgers and cheer them on until they win and smoke the Ducks,” Renee said.

“Keep hoping,” David chimed in.

“Then we’re going to party in L.A.,” Renee added.

“To drown your sorrows,” David added.

Meanwhile, in Edmonds, David will proudly be flying the Ducks flag and enjoying the game with his twin 6-year-old boys, his dad and sister, and a fellow Ducks buddy who also is a dad of twins.

“I’ll be an obnoxious Tweeter and Facebook poster once the Ducks get their first Rose Bowl win,” said David, who can be followed on Twitter @DavidKaufer. Not to be outdone, Renee noted that she would also be posting on Twitter during the game (follow her @rkaufer).

While both teams have lost just twice this season, David was quick to note that the Ducks are slight favorites. “I think that’s wrong,” Renee replied.

If the Badgers win, “I’ll be humble but I’ll poke him a little bit,” Renee said. “I’ll say, ‘at least it was a good game.'”

“That’s her line if the Badgers win,” countered David, adding that if Badgers lose, “I won’t say anything. I don’t rib her. I know better.”

“Yeah, I’ll take him out,” Renee said.

This isn’t the first time the couple has had this dilemma. In 2000, Oregon played Wisconsin in Madison and they traveled together to watch the Ducks-Badgers match-up. “I actually had a great time there,” David said. “Wisconsin fans are great. There are a lot of similarities between Madison and Eugene in terms of the fan base, so we really get along.”

And the two may find themselves in a similar situation in a few weeks — this time with professional football. That’s because Renee is a Green Bay Packers fan while David supports the San Francisco 49ers.

“There’s a good chance they may meet in the playoffs for the Super Bowl,” David said. Ironically, it would also mean that the two would have to switch colors. The 49ers wear red while the Packers sport green and yellow.

  1. I believe it is news worthy because the 98th Rose Bowl was today. Which is a very popular thing. And that a couple in our town were rivals for a day because their college teams were playing against eachother.

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