i agree with most everything you said, but i wanted to add that there are rivalries, and then there are great rivalries. lots of teams have rivalries. but the truly great ones are the rivalries that the fans of the the teams involved are the most rabid about, and the fans of the sport in general are the most interested in.
as for canceling the game, Tenn fans will tell you Pat quit the series because Geno is a cheat. i'm sure the mods would rather not beat that dead horse, but she did much more damage, IMHO, with her innuendos and veiled reasons for quitting the series. my point is, if you are going to accuse someone of something publicly, you'd better have your facts straight because the defense against slander is "it's the truth".
the problem is, Pat knew there is no proof so she never came out and called Geno a cheater, etc. she just implied it and let her fans run around screaming it from the rooftops.