OFFSEASON CONTENT: What’s on Your CFB Stadium Bucket List?
As anyone who reads this site will likely know, Georgia and Notre Dame have played exactly once over the span of 100+ years of each institution fielding a football team. On this site and the DudeYouPodcast, I have many times encouraged Georgia fans to make the trip this September if you have the means.
Having been in 2006, Notre Dame is by no means the rowdiest place to watch a football game. Matter of fact, it feels quaint, almost as if the history makes it more of a church atmosphere than a fall Saturday to which we’re accustomed. (Notre Dame joke #1) It’s almost like they’re living among the ghosts of their past successes. Even so, its worth a trip to see Touchdown Jesus, and to see (Notre Dame joke #2) where Rudy was CLEARLY offsides. God, I hate the movie Rudy.
It got me thinking, “what stadium experiences do I need to have while I’m young enough to fully participate?”, and…I need to apply for a Southwest credit card. I’m also hoping we can crowdsource a list from you the reader, so comment with your top 10 and I’ll use my Excel skillz and figure out where the DudeYouNation intends to go.
First, where I’ve been (P5 only), ranked with hopes of not being clouded by any biases. I apologize for it being ACC-heavy:
- Clemson- everything about their gameday experience is just right. I’m growing tired of them being #1 at EVERYTHING these days.
- Georgia- been to too many good 3:30’s and night games to ignore how awesome Athens on a Saturday is. Behind Clemson due to a few too many sleepy games, and less ample tailgating.
- Virginia Tech- Enter Sandman is as awesome at noon as it is on a Thursday night.
- Auburn- Clemson without a lake (and my only experience is an Iron Bowl, so probably overrated).
- Notre Dame- like I said above, cool setting.
- South Carolina- Columbia is the seventh circle of hell, both in the town sense and the literal “I’m gonna die from heatstroke” sense. But fairground tailgating is always fun, and Space Odyssey is cool until your undefeated Georgia team is down 3 touchdowns in the first quarter.
- Alabama- probably low, but it has the NFL feel both in atmosphere, and drunk, grumbling fans complaining about a four touchdown lead.
- North Carolina- fun for a big game, dead otherwise. A 3:30 game in October, though, is about as pleasant an afternoon as you can ask for.
- N.C. State- has the fairgrounds tailgate that makes South Carolina fun, and they let you out of the stadium at halftime to…re-up.
- Virginia- has the UNC/Notre Dame quaintness to it.
- Wake Forest- really not that bad! It has the one-level grandstand that puts you more or less on top of the action, and tailgating is both easy to find, parking-wise, and largely unregulated.
- Georgia Tech- Bobby Dodd has rebuilt its reputation on soccer games.
- Duke- I’ve been to high school stadiums with more people, more atmosphere, and better restrooms.
So, what’s left? A whole hell of a lot.
- LSU: Death Valley at night may well end up having to be part of a dangerous bachelor party, some day.
- Oregon: apparently Autzen Stadium’s pretzel-like design keeps noise in. I’m not an architect, but I’m here for that.
- Texas: DKR is no longer (anywhere close to) the biggest destination in the state any more, but I’d rather tailgate in Austin than do whatever weird stuff they do before games in College Station. Come at me, Aggies.
- Colorado: If you’ve never been to Boulder, you won’t understand why this is on the list. If you have, Rocky Mountain backdrop for college football. Rice-Eccles at Utah gets a shoutout here too, but I don’t really want to go to Utah.
- Ohio State: Taking the Horseshoe as my obligatory B1G destination because, somehow, Urban Meyer’s Buckeyes are less objectionable than Michigan and Penn State right now. I mean…
- Ole Miss: The Grove, which should somehow become more fun given the fact that the Black Bears will NOT be winning football games for awhile.
- UCLA/USC: Lumping them into one doesn’t seem quite right, but then again it does. Stadiums with a TON of history, beautiful LA backdrop, etc. etc.
- Wisconsin: I’m here for the drunkest fanbase in college football and “Jump Around” in the fourth quarter.
- Florida: Yup. The Swamp looks fun on TV due to its asymmetrical layout. Sometimes ya just gotta slum it.
- Arizona State: More off-the-beaten-path Pac-12ness, but this one has a backstory: I hiked the mountain overlooking Sun Devil Stadium, and it was pretty cool. Tempe is INSANE. This would be fun, especially if they were any good.
That’s my list (in no particular order). For this to work, I need yours. Comment or tweet @Chad_Floyd the top 10 you want to go to, and the top 5 you’ve already seen. I’ll tally up the winners for a follow-up for next week.