We’ve already told you about 5 of the most well-known college football tailgates to get you excited for the season. Well, here are five MORE of the best college football tailgate scenes across the nation. Quintessential college towns, mascots, grilling, beers, and school colors – it’s all here. Apologies in advance for the SEC-heavy list, but when you’re good, you’re good! Get tickets now to go see your favorite NCAA team and join in on the party! We’ve got them right here on Razorgator. Just be sure to wear the right school’s colors!
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You can’t talk football without mentioning the best team in the country and the reigning national champs, the Clemson Tigers. Clemson, South Carolina is a true college town if there ever was one. (Literally, the university makes the town and there’s not much else to do around Death Valley – you’re either there for the school or the sports.) Be aware, on a Saturday, it’s going to be wall-to-wall bright orange once you enter the city limits. Clemson tailgating is a tradition, and students and alumni really turn out for game days – for real, they get there early! Some of the set-ups are extremely elaborate, with TVs and satellite dishes to tune into other games, grills and smokers, and cornhole and other games you can play while holding a beer. Two hours before the game, you can go check out the “Tiger Walk” and see Coach Dabo Swinney and the players walk into the stadium all dressed up! It’s one heck of an experience!
This year is going to be a particularly big one for Auburn tailgating. The Tigers host rivals Alabama and Georgia at home this football season in the small-town area lovingly referred to as “The Plains.” Look out for orange and navy decor, tigers (both stuffed and painted), and chants of “War Damn Eagle” on game day in Auburn. People bring couches, tents, grills, and snazzy orange vehicles out to show school spirit and get fans amped for the game – and they start roping off spots as early as the night before! The Student Center is also open to fans on game day if you don’t have allegiance to a particular tailgate. Get there a couple hours before kickoff to see Auburn’s version of the “Tiger Walk” with coaches, players, and Aubie the Tiger, then head to the stadium early if you want to see the flight of the War Eagle! If Auburn wins, race to Toomer’s Corner after the game to see students throw toilet paper over everything!
We told you this list was gonna be heavy on the SEC teams. Learn to say “Go Vols!” correctly, memorize the lyrics to “Rocky Top,” and head to Knoxville for some Tennessee football. For home games, the university town transforms into a sea of orange and white, and roads close for crowds of fans to roam the streets. Tailgates pop up on campus, in surrounding neighborhoods, at bars, and even on the nearby docks of the Tennessee River. Known as the “Vol Navy,” there’s a community of boaters and UT fans who come together on gameday – and you can visit even if you don’t have a boat. Just go party with them on the docks (and maybe get invited aboard)! Before games, you can also check out the hybrid parade-party-pep rally known as the “Vol Walk” as the team makes its way to the stadium.
Nebraska folks might be known as nice and polite, but Huskers fans don’t play around – they’ve sold out every home game at Memorial Stadium since 1962. That’s over 350 straight games and, yes, it’s an NCAA record. The city of Lincoln turns completely red on game days as fans pour into town and the Haymarket District, filling college bars and pretty much any free space available near the stadium. People get loud and wear ridiculous outfits to support the Cornhuskers, so join them! Seriously, bring some snacks or a bottle of booze and you’ll most likely be welcomed into tailgates here with open arms! For other pre-game hotspots ahead of the game, check out The Watering Hole, a local favorite bar with great wings, or Husker Nation Pavilion, a family-friendly tailgating spot on the turf practice field. Check out the Unity Walk a few hours before kickoff if you want to get a glimpse of the team, the cheerleaders, and Lil’ Red and Herbie Husker (the mascots).
There’s really nothing like this tailgate anywhere else in the nation. Excuse us, it’s actually known as “sailgating” around these parts. Up in Seattle, you’ll find Husky Stadium perched just on the edge of the water, and fans roll out on boats and yachts on Union Bay to party before game time. Wear your purple, bring a raincoat, and join in on the fun. Expect craft beers, grills on boats, tequila and Fireball shots (to keep warm, of course), chili dogs, and maybe some clam chowder if you’re lucky! This is one of the most beautiful tailgating scenes in the nation, and the pristine nature combined with the boat party atmosphere makes it a can’t-miss experience. But don’t let the beauty of the area and the fact that you’re not in SEC country fool you – the fans are rowdy and the stadium gets super loud! If you can’t get on a boat to tailgate, try to get into “The Zone” – an in-stadium tailgating experience – or one of the local beer gardens. If not, a parking lot will do just fine!