10 of the best college football tailgates

Whether you’re in it for the football or—let’s be honest—the food, these 10 wildly popular tailgates won’t disappoint.
  1. Clemson University

    Location: Frank Howard Field at Clemson Memorial Stadium (Clemson, S.C.)

    Team name: Tigers

    Claim to fame: Tailgating here has an unmistakable family feel, with young kids rubbing elbows with alumni who haven’t missed a game in decades. Two hours before kickoff, don your orange gear and head to Tiger Walk, where fans can cheer on players as they warm up.

  2. Louisiana State University

    Location: Tiger Stadium (Baton Rouge, La.)

    Team name: Tigers

    Claim to fame: Bring your appetite because it’s all about the food for LSU fans. On any given Saturday, tailgaters chow down on jambalaya, crawfish and jumbo—but you’ll have to wait until Florida is in town to score a taste of fried alligator.

  3. Ohio State University

    Location: Ohio Stadium (Columbus, Ohio)

    Team name: Buckeyes

    Claim to fame: Each year, the week prior to the Ohio vs. Michigan matchup, thousands of Buckeyes fans head to Mirror Lake for midnight revelry and a plunge into the frigid waters. On game day, sport scarlet and grey and join the masses at the “Skull Session,” when the marching band puts on a concert to get both the players and fans fired up.

  4. Pennsylvania State University

    Location: Beaver Stadium (University Park, Pa.)

    Team name: Nittany Lions

    Claim to fame: Penn State’s tailgating scene is distinctive for its sheer size. On Saturday mornings in the fall, more than 100,000 die-hard fans dressed in navy and white descend on Happy Valley to cheer on their beloved home team.

  5. Texas A&M

    Location: Kyle Field (College Station, Texas)

    Team name: Aggies

    Claim to fame: Don’t miss “Midnight Yell,” held the Friday night before gameday, when as many as 50,000 fans pack Kyle Field to get a jumpstart on cheering.

  6. University of Alabama

    Location: Bryant–Denny Stadium (Tuscaloosa, Ala.)

    Team name: Crimson Tide

    Claim to fame: “Roll Tide.” No matter where you are on the picturesque Quad, you’ll hear the team’s rallying cry repeated time after time. Barbecue lovers won’t go hungry at this popular tailgate—unless you show up late, that is. The Quad opens at 6 p.m. on Friday to accommodate the crowds.

  7. University of Georgia

    Location: Sanford Stadium (Athens, Ga.)

    Team name: Bulldogs

    Claim to fame: In Athens, Bulldogs fans pride themselves on a tailgate that’s a classy, southern affair—and they wear the sundresses and bowties to prove it. But the real revelry takes place in Jacksonville, the neutral site of the Georgia vs. Florida game. One of the most anticipated games of the season, this matchup boasts a tailgate that’s been dubbed “The World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party.”

  8. University of Mississippi

    Location: Vaught-Hemingway Stadium (Oxford, Miss.)

    Team name: Rebels

    Claim to fame: Your traditional, anything-goes tailgate this is not. Southern hospitality is in full force at The Grove, a picturesque 10-acre quad at the center of campus. Ole Miss fans come dressed to the nines and nosh on food served on fine china.

  9. University of South Carolina

    Location: Williams–Brice Stadium (Columbia, S.C.)

    Team name: Gamecocks

    Claim to fame: Gamecocks fans kick off their Saturdays aboard Cockabooses, 22 garnet and black railroad cars located just steps from the stadium. Rent one of these luxury trains for a tailgate like no other.

  10. University of Tennessee

    Location: Neyland Stadium (Knoxville, Tenn.)

    Team name: Volunteers

    Claim to fame: Situated near the Tennessee River, Neyland Stadium is famous for its “sailgating” tradition. On Saturdays, fans known as the “Vol Navy” congregate on hundreds of boats for a nautical celebration that often extends well past kickoff.


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January 18, 2018 09:48 AM