14 Stadiums Every College Football Fan Needs to Experience
We all love College Football and we all love the excitement of a big crowd, hot college chicks, and a great tailgate scene...but a lot of people don't venture out of their town too often and are missing the greatness of the college football across the U.S.
Whether you are from the south, west, east, or north, college football is fun, exciting, and is an experience like none other.
In this slideshow, I have put together 14 stadiums (Plus a few bonus), most I have been to, others I have heard from friends who have worked for several programs, that every college football fan needs to experience.
No specific ranking order here, just 14 of the best environments you all need to see for yourself!
University of Florida Gators
One of the best college atmospheres, love them or hate them, is no doubt at the University of Florida and their stadium..."The Swamp."
Their maximum capacity is 88,548 people and you can be sure that it will be filled with those blue and orange shirts everywhere.
Gainesville is a college town pure and simple; but for out-of-towners it does have some things to do so don't head there on game day, maybe spend a Friday night there and then leave directly after the game to avoid the Gator trash talk!
Trust me, you don't want to experience that... or if you are feisty, maybe you do. The fans are loud, crazy, and always passionate.
My experience there in regards to the entire football experience was awesome but I do have to say the Gator fans are some of the cockiest I've seen, ever.
Either way this is a great college town with a great fanbase. The weather is a bit hot so a night game would be best but it really doesn't matter because you will always remember a trip to G-Ville and "The Swamp." It is a place you must experience!
University of Georgia Bulldogs: Sanford Stadium
For our next must experience stadium, why not head up north a few hours to the Gators' rival, the Georgia Bulldogs.
The Dawgs play in historic Sanford Stadium which has a huge capacity of 92,746. It is the fifth biggest on campus stadium and the 15th biggest in the world.
Athens is a college town much like Gainesville, except the people are much different. Dawg fans are a bit rowdy and love their team but the Athens campus and people have a sort of charm about them that other places don't.
They love to tailgate and love to show up HOURS ahead of time. I don't think I have seen a place where the crowd literally plans their next tailgate party five minutes after their game other than at UGA.
If you want to have a good time, be with some loud, rowdy folks who love to drink and watch football...head over to Athens because it is definitely a place college fans need to experience.
Ohio State University: Ohio Stadium
The Ohio State, as many people call it, is a truly awesome place to watch a football game. The crowd is always a sellout even if the Buckeyes are having a down year and they are there in full support.
"The Horseshoe" is where the Buckeyes play and it has an unreal stadium capacity of 102,329! It is the third largest college stadium in the world.
As you can see from the picture, there are no actual field lights in the stadium; instead, each night game they must temporarily install lights. Many people do not know this, but if you have been there, it is pretty cool looking.
Buckeye nation loves their football team and besides having one of the best crowds and stadiums in America, they also have (in my opinion) some of the best jerseys.
The people up there love to party on gameday and even if it is a freezing November day, the Scarlet and Gray will be out in full force.
Unless you want to possibly be caught in a freeze storm, I recommend going to the Horseshoe at the beginning of the season.
It is quite a sight to see onside the stadium and a blast to be around so many loving CFB fans. Do yourself a favor and check out an Ohio State game.
While LSU's "Tiger Stadium" is pretty awesome in its own right, the LSU fans are what really sets it apart from other places.
Tiger Stadium is the ninth largest stadium in the NCAA and third biggest in the SEC with a capacity of 92,400.
I have been to both UF and LSU (and many others) and there is no doubt in my opinion that those two student bodies have the most "confidence" in their programs.
They love to talk smack and love to watch their Tigers kick a$$.
The food during tailgating is as good as it gets. It is not just a stereotype that Louisiana has some delicious Cajun food... it is a fact! Cajun BBQ is quite incredible.
The Tigers' fans show up with plenty of energy and are always seen on TV chanting "SEC, SEC, SEC."
There is no doubt that when you leave Tigers' Stadium that you will be aware that you are in the heart of SEC country. But hey, it is a great atmosphere and another must-experience stadium!
University of Oregon Ducks: Autzen Stadium
Maybe the smallest capacity of all the schools on this must experience list but there is no avoiding Autzen Stadium in Eugene, Ore.
The stadium capacity may seem tiny (54,000) to SEC and Big 12 folks, but trust me when I say there is no louder stadium in the country than Autzen.
The folks up in Eugene love to show off their 1,000 different types and colors of jerseys and wear them on days you would never expect (35 degrees).
The crowd is literally on top of the field and players who have played there will tell you that there is no louder game atmosphere because of this. The two biggest games in Eugene are USC and Oregon State... both games are ridiculously loud and the Ducks do bite!
Even if you are not a PAC 10 fan or a huge Ducks supporter, this college and town is worth the visit. Eugene is cool little city with a ton of stuff to do with gorgeous surroundings everywhere you look.
Autzen Stadium... small, loud, fun, and worth the trip.
University of Texas Longhorns: Texas Memorial Stadium
Not only is Texas Memorial a stadium that you need to go see for yourself, the city of Austin is a blast, to say the least!
The Texas Longhorns have the the fourth biggest stadium in the NCAA with a giant capacity of 100,119. 50,000 of those are hot cowgirls... kidding... but there are some hot girls on this campus for sure.
The atmosphere is very laid back and there are as many bars to go to in downtown Austin that I have ever seen.
The stadium is always full and the people in Texas LOVE their football. Tailgating is big here but it is different than a lot of places; the bars around the campus are packed and people "prepare" themselves for the game there.
The crowd is loud and you will hear "Hook 'EM" more times than the referee's blow their whistle... it is a fun, fun place to be.
Head to Austin and the University of Texas and catch yourself a game there... you won't regret it, I guarantee it.
University of Michigan Wolverines
The Michigan Wolverines have a storied past and their stadium is no different. Michigan Stadium AKA the "Big House" has endured several renovations over the past few decades but things have seemed to settle down for now.
The capacity is an incredible 107,501 but during some games the stadium has seen crowds of over 111,000. Good luck finding any walking room when you go to a Michigan vs Ohio State game.
The Wolverines have fans across the country but there is no doubt that they rule around Lake Michigan.
The Wolverine fans may have the case of denial sometimes but all in all they are a very fair-minded group of fans who cheer hard and loudly for their team.
Ohio State fans may not agree but from an outside perspective that is my and my friends' experiences.
Even though going to freezing cold games are typically no fun, if there was one place where I would want to be for a cold game, it would be at the "Big House."
Temperatures don't matter to the Wolverines and their fans... the environment is always the same!
I recommend the Ohio State vs Michigan game but if that isn't doable... any game at the "Big House" will satisfy your CFB needs.
Florida State University: Doak Campbell- Bobby Bowden Field
I know there isn't a photo of FSU's stadium but trust me it is nice and this picture was more appropriate!
Doak Campbell Stadium at Bobby Bowden Field has a capacity of around 82,000 and is one that I highly recommend visiting. Tallahassee is an awesome little college city with a lot of things to do.
There are bars and clubs but most of all FSU has a great tailgating scene with beer chuggers in every direction. It is a fun place to be for a weekend and a great overall football atmosphere.
The Seminoles used to be the power of the nation but in recent years have slipped which has obviously taken a slight toll on their crowds but do not be mistaken... for as small as Tallahassee is, these fans are great and a blast to be around.
The Florida State vs. Miami game was my personal favorite but the 'Noles and Tallahassee is always a great spot to find yourself on a CFB weekend. And yes, incredible women!
The University of Oklahoma Sooners: Gaylord Family Oklahoma Memorial Stadium
Not only do the Sooners of Oklahoma have a great football program and tradition, their stadium is a wonderful place to go to on a Saturday afternoon.
The Sooners fans are known for being obnoxiously loud but for college fans, that is a compliment! They know how to party and have a very spacious 82,112 stadium capacity.
Norman is a cool college hangout and a Oklahoma State vs. Oklahoma game is one that you need to catch in your lifetime.
The women are pretty, the stadium rocks, and they all hate the Longhorns and Cowboys as the Sooner Nation. Great program, great stadium, solid atmosphere... what is there not to like?
USC Trojans: L.A. Coliseum
Why would I not use a USC cheerleader for a picture here? They are renowned as being the best for a reason.
There is arguably no stadium that has as much history as the L.A. Coliseum does.
Not all of the history is made up of USC football games but with the mixture of Dodgers games, Angels games, Raiders, Rams, and most impressively, the Summer Olympics!
Capacity around 92,000, can be maximized at over 105,000.
There are L.A. stereotypes of celebrities everywhere, gorgeous women, best weather in the world... all of those are true of course but if you don't think people love USC football around Southern Cal you are hugely mistaken.
If you walk the Trojans' campus during a game, you will hear and see nothing because everyone has driven or walked right down the street to the Coliseum.
The tailgating is much different here than the south or north but it is just as fun, I promise. There are bars set up, flat screen TV's everywhere and yes of course, California girls.
The Coliseum is old, historic, and full of energy during every USC game. The Trojans love to play at home and often invite anybody in the country to come challenge them.
If you have never been to California or Los Angeles, make sure it is during the football season and take a break from the beaches and hiking through the hills to come catch a great CFB atmosphere!
Clemson University Tigers: Memorial Stadium- Death Valley
I know many people have never been here, but it is a great place with some great people to surround yourself with.
Clemson's Memorial Stadium AKA "Death Valley" has a stadium capacity of around 82,000.
They set the stadium record a decade ago during a Florida State Clemson game, over 86,000 people attended.
The stadium has specific myths that make it even more intriguing and add to the already fun environment.
One reason why it has the name "Death Valley" is due to the stadiums location inside a valley but what adds to the intrigue is that an old cemetery used to rest on the hillside overlooking the field.
There is also "The Rock" which was given to old Clemson coach, Coach Howard, from his close friend. The Rock symbolizes Coach Howard coming from Death Valley, Calif., to Death Valley, S.C.
Lastly, you have the "Most Exciting 25 Seconds in College Football" when the players get off the buses and run down the hill into the stadium.
This is an incredible place to watch a game and the Tigers fans are one of the classiest around. Head to Death Valley and live it up!
University of Tennessee Vols: Neyland Stadium
Tennessee is a beautiful state with some football-loving people. The stadium is massive and holds over 102,000 people.
The blonde girls are there and the football addicts are also there in large numbers.
The Vols fans love nothing more than to trash other teams like their rivals, UF, and for good reason...they have been a solid program for a long time and the crowd is at capacity year in and year out.
The Vols like to party but it is a little more easy going than other SEC places which actually is sort of nice in a way. It has a different kind of an SEC charm while also possessing the loud and monstrous crowds.
I highly recommend a UF vs Tennessee Saturday night game, you won't be sorry and you will see two teams and two fan bases battling each other all night long.
Enjoy Tennessee and have fun at a Vols game, never forgetting CFB experience.
Penn State Nittany Lions: Beaver Stadium
Welcome to the biggest stadium in America, Penn State's Beaver Stadium!
Stadium capacity up in "Happy Valley" is a tiny 107,282. If you want to see the biggest white-out ever besides a Wisconsin snow storm, go check out a Penn State game.
The crowd loves to have a good time and there are arguably only a handful of places that have a better college town than College Town, Pa.
The kids are Nittany Lion fanatics and follow their teams as much as any place in the country.
It is a great party scene and I recommend staying a few hours or the night after a game so you can experience it to the fullest degree!
Great tradition, one of a kind coach in Joe Pa, and the perfect college town as its surrounding; give yourself a break from your boring stay at home life and go kick it in "Happy Valley" and Beaver Stadium.
UCLA: The Rose Bowl
Last but not least on this list we have the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, Calif.
It may not be on UCLA's campus but who wouldn't want to play at such a historic site? You have surrounding mountains, golf courses, and the gorgeous SoCal weather.
UCLA's Rose Bowl holds over 91,000 people and there is no bad seat in the place. The Bruins have a very solid history and play extremely well in their home away from their campus.
The crowds like to come out and have a laid back but fun tailgate which may or may not include IN-N Out Burgers.
These folks are there to support there Bruins but it is more about the stadium and its beautiful structure and surroundings that make it a must experience place.
There is so much to do around town and you are only a short half hour drive from L.A.
The Bruins hate their cross town rivals, USC, and people who are from other parts of the country and think the West coast is "soft" when it comes to rivalries...I invite you to a UCLA vs USC game. It is very similar to other great rivalries across the country and is very underappreciated nationwide.
The Rose Bowl game on Jan. 1 is also something one needs to experience in their lifetimes.
Go ahead, make your trip down and watch the Rose Parade in the morning and follow it with a trip up the road to the Rose Bowl game... it is a truly remarkable scene.
College Stadiums That Just Missed the List! Go See These Too!
University of South Carolina: Around an 80,000 stadium capacity at Williams-Brice and some of the wildest yet kind fans you'll meet.
Oregon State University: Similar to the Ducks in Oregon, the Beavers have a smaller stadium, Reser Stadium where it only sits around 45,000.
However, Corvallis is a neat little town and the stadium is much louder than you would expect. It is arguably the loudest behind Oregon on the west coast.
Nebraska Cornhuskers Memorial Stadium: Capacity sits at around 80,000 but if you have never experienced a Cornhusker fan, head to Lincoln! These fans are passionate and love the game of football.
BYU's LaVell Edwards Stadium: Can get very loud but has some of the most gorgeous mountains in the country surrounding you while you watch a good football game. Capacity is much bigger than people think... around 64,000.
West Virginia Mountaineer Field: You want to talk about hometown college football fanatics, check out a West Virginia game and you will truly experience how passionate they are and how close their community is. Capacity above 60,000.
Virginia Tech's Lane Stadium: While we are on the topic of close communities, how about Virginia Tech's community? They are passionate about anything Hokies and that includes their very impressive football program led by a great football mind, Frank Beamer.
Sorry, if your favorite didn't make the list but there are so many great stadiums out there and these were the ones that truly made an impact on my and my friend's lives in regards to CFB.