August is here, and that means it’s time to start thinking about college football. There are a lot of questions for the top schools going into the 2012 season. Most importantly, where is everyone getting plastered before the game? Take a look at our preseason college football rankings, and how these top programs celebrate game day in the fall. Tailgate time, here we go.
1. University of Southern California
2012 is supposed to be USC’s return to dominance in football, as they’re a popular pick to win it all behind senior quarterback Matt Barkley. Even if the Trojans disappoint on the field this year, which is not likely, we know their fans will still be having a damn good time at their games. The houses at USC are packed hours before the games with bros decked in cardinal and gold, and the chicks that give SoCal its fantastic reputation. The best parties here can often be confused for a scene from “The Hills,” or so I’ve been told. Once you leave your primary tailgate crib, make your way down Trousdale Parkway to take in the tailgates of other Trojan fans. Kicking the flag posts along Trousdale is a tradition that a lot of fans take part in on their way to the Coliseum, then make your way to 901 Bar & Grill later to keep the party going.
2. University of Alabama
The defending national champs are well represented by their 100,000+ loyal fans down in Tuscaloosa one game day. First of all, don’t show up to T-Town if you’re not wearing either crimson or Bear Bryant’s famous hound’s tooth pattern. Once you’ve got that taken care of, grab a brew from one of the “To-Go” bars along University Strip. There’s no open container law in effect, so take a cold one with you to your next tailgate destination or on your way into Bryant-Denny Stadium. Fraternity houses at ‘Bama are conveniently located across the street from their football palace of a stadium, so it’s an easy stumble for students to get to the games. Once inside, fraternities have blocked seating behind the end zone, while most of the student section is located in the upper deck. After a Tide win, head over to Gallete’s, The Houndstooth, or another of Tuscaloosa’s watering holes to celebrate.
3. Louisiana State University
Baton Rouge and Death Valley are the places to be on Saturdays in the fall. The dismissal of the Honey Badger cost the Tigers the top spot in our rankings, but LSU’s faithful will still put together one of the best scenes in sports outside the stadium. The thing that separates Baton Rouge tailgates from the rest is the food. At LSU you’ll find delicacies such as whole roasted pigs, fried alligator tails, and of course Cajun specialties like boudin and jambalaya before every single game. Trust us, they know how to party, too. LSU’s campus is absolutely taken over on game days by RV’s and tailgate parties everywhere. A bro can begin his day at his house, then wander anywhere around the stadium to find a party of his liking. BroBible posted up on the Parade Grounds during our 2011 Tailgate Tour and we were not disappointed. Many LSU bros go with the southern style of dressing up for the games, and the ladies join in with their sundresses. However, the amount of tiger stripes and body paint you’ll find in Death Valley is more than impressive as well. LSU and its fans will both look to rebound from their title game sh*t show last season, so Baton Rouge should be wild this fall. Warning: be careful if you’re in visiting colors.
4. University of Oregon
Oregon’s Autzen Stadium is the smallest venue on this list, holding a mere 54,000 fans. However, you would have no idea of this if you were there, as their crowd measures up as one of the loudest in the nation. Parking around the stadium has become fairly limited, but that does not stop the Ducks from properly preparing for a home game in Eugene. Because of the lack of parking, swarms of students in green and gold make their way from their houses around campus where a lot of the student tailgating takes place. Don’t look down upon what goes on in the lots, though, Duck fans put together great set ups, great food, and a lot of beer before heading in for the game.
5. University of Georgia
The party begins in Athens long before the Dawgs take the field between the hedges. Houses are packed hours before kickoff with bros, brews, and plenty of Southern belles. Being that UGA is a southern school, game day attire is not limited to only jerseys and face paint. You’ll find most of the girls in sundresses, and most of the dudes in Polos and khakis. Some go for the bowtie look, just make sure it’s red or black. As for getting f*cked up, they do that pretty well in Athens. Beers are a plenty and Evan Williams is always at the tailgate. If you can still stand by kickoff, first give yourself a pat on the back, then head over to Sanford Stadium. Just make sure you know the words to the, “Who’s that coming down the tracks?” chant. If the scene in Athens isn’t enough for you, you probably need a liver transplant. However, you can hit up the “World’s Largest Cocktail Party” and “Frat Beach” at the annual Georgia-Florida game in Jacksonville to party with the Dawgs there as well.