49ers vs. Rams: Fans' bragging rights, trip to Big Game on the line for infamous Bay to LA rivalry

Rams and 49ers is one of the oldest matchups in California rivalries, dating back to 1950. The rivalry renews this Sunday in LA.
SANTA CLARA, Calif. (KGO) -- When the San Francisco 49ers and the Los Angeles Rams meet up this weekend it will be about more than just an NFC title - bragging rights will be on the line.

NorCal versus SoCal has always been a rivalry, and our favorite sports teams crank it up even higher.

Every game is a big game for Bay Area sports fans, but when the opponent comes from down South, it just means more.

"If I'm sitting across from somebody in a Dodgers shirt, I'm like, 'nuh-uh. What are you doing?'" Bay Area sports fan Brian Wheatley said.

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"My dad was a Niners fan and taught me everything I know about sports, and that includes the rivalry and the hatred towards those pesky teams in LA," Bay Area sports fan Christine Zeyen said.

The rivalry between Los Angeles and the Bay Area is about more than just sports, but the games are what we get most passionate about.

Hall of Fame sports journalist Mark Purdy sees the Bay vs. LA as one of the best sports rivalries featuring some of the biggest games.

Giants vs. Dodgers, Sharks vs. Kings, Warriors vs. Lakers, Earthquakes vs. Galaxy and, on the forefront this weekend, 49ers vs. Rams.

"It's become part of the culture," Purdy said. "The fact that fans can drive to each other's games, that to me is what makes it fun."

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San Francisco 49ers fans are determined to "turn the stadium red" this weekend for the NFC Championship game against the Los Angeles Rams.

We've also been lucky enough to see the games on the biggest stages.

In the past calendar year alone, we've seen LA and the Bay square off in a playoff matchup three separate times.

"To make these rivalries work, you need two teams, both being good at the same times and playing for the ultimate prizes and that's what we've got this weekend," Purdy said. "I love this rivalry because it's the closest thing the NFL has to a great college rivalry."

Rams and 49ers is one of the oldest matchups in this California rivalry dating back to 1950.

The storied Giants Dodgers rivalry started 8 years later in California.

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Now 72 years later, here we go again for the Rams and Niners.

"With everything that's gone on in the country in the last few years, we in California deserve this," Purdy said. "To have a game like this that allows, just for a few hours on Sunday, for everybody emotionally involved in a football game, it's gunna be fun."

The rivalry renews Sunday in LA.

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