Georgia Football: What Every Fan Must Experience on a Fall Saturday in Athens
There is a reason that over 92,000 fans make their way to Athens, Georgia on Saturdays in the fall.
The atmosphere at Sanford Stadium is like no other. From tailgating to when the players come onto the field for the first time, watching a Georgia football game is a treat no matter how young or old you are.
UGA is a pretty big campus, so there is a lot to do even when the game has yet not kicked off. And that makes it one of the most popular schools and cities in the country.
Here's what every fan must experience on a fall Saturday in Athens.
Visit Herty Field
Believe it or not, Sanford Stadium was not the first venue for the Georgia Bulldogs.
On January 30, 1892, Georgia defeated Mercer 50-0 in the first college football game in the state of Georgia.
Herty Field was turned into a parking lot in the 1940s, but then it was converted back into a green space in 1999.
Fans can get a glimpse of the piece of history by going to Herty Drive, located on the North Campus of UGA.
PHOTO: Courtesy of Wikipedia
Visit the Butts-Mehre Heritage Hall
Fans that appreciate Georgia football history will love the Butts-Mehre Heritage Hall.
This place houses the Georgia football program, the Athletic Association offices and a museum that features a lot of UGA sports memorabilia.
Some of the memorabilia that fans can see include the Heisman Trophies won by Frank Sinkwich and Herschel Walker, as well as the bowl trophies the Bulldogs have won in the past.
There is even the ball that Michael Johnson caught for the game-winning touchdown against Auburn in 2002 to clinch the SEC East title.
PHOTO: Courtesy of visit.uga.edu
The Dawg Walk
Before entering Sanford Stadium, fans gather by the Student Center to watch the Bulldogs make their way into the stadium, which happens two hours before kickoff.
It's is quite an experience, as the cheerleaders and the Redcoat Band are also there to get the fans fired up.
But just a word of caution, make sure to get there early, because it gets real crowded in a hurry.
PHOTO: Courtesy of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images
If a fan is going to Athens on a Saturday in the fall, he or she has to experience a game at Sanford Stadium.
From the lone trumpeter that plays the beginning notes of the "Battle Hymn of the Bulldog Nation" to the fans chanting "Go Dawgs! Sic 'em! Woof, woof woof," there is no shortage of action during a Georgia Football game.
Even when the game gets to the fourth quarter and everybody in the stadium has four fingers up in the air, it gives even the casual Georgia fan goosebumps.
It's more fun to see the Bulldogs win, but the overall game experience at Sanford Stadium is second to none.
Ringing the Bell
One of the more popular things to do at UGA on a Saturday is to ring the Chapel Bell. Ever since the Bulldogs started playing football in the 1890s, the bell has been rung after a Bulldog victory.
Originally, it was only freshmen that rang the bell, and that started when the team was playing at Herty Field. Today, all students, fans and alumni can take part in ringing the bell after a win. But just like the Dawg Walk, fans have to get there early, because the line for ringing the Chapel Bell can get really long.
PHOTO: Courtesy of University of Georgia