Posts Tagged ‘Uga’

Great College Gridiron Traditions…

There’s lots of great college gridiron today!  Nothing beats the college stadium atmosphere and the fierce loyalty that students, alumni and fans hold for their teams.  That passion is unparalleled in all of sports.  The tailgates, cheers and mascots help make up the “threads” of the multi-colored college football tapestry.  So as we get ready to drown ourselves in our Saturday addiction, we thought it would be fun to look at some of the best college football traditions in a few of today’s match ups.

Auburn vs. Georgia

Auburn has one of the coolest traditions in all of college football.  Though their mascot is the Tiger, a live eagle soars above the 90,000 cheering fans as the stadium blares out its official fight song “War Eagle”.  Click below to see this great Auburn tradition!

The Georgia Bulldogs do not have an eagle circling their stadium, but they do have a real, live bulldog named Uga (pronounced UH-ga).  Donning a spiked collar and red jersey, Uga paces the sideline expressing the deep loyalty that only a dog can possess.  Just last month, the latest Uga (#8) was introduced to the crowd after the previous canine passed away last year.  The university reveres their bulldogs so much that deceased Ugas are actually interred in an on campus mausoleum, near the stadium. 

Penn State vs. Ohio State

Penn State’s program is rich with tradition.  Before each home game, as the band marches down the field, the drum major gallantly leads the procession and does a flip in mid-air. Another tradition occurs at each home game as students yell out the “We Want the Lion, We Want the Lion” chant.  The mascot runs to the loudest student section and is then passed up above the heads of frenzied students – all the way from the bottom row of seats to the top!  “Paternoville” is a more recent tradition. Students set up tents outside the stadium and live there for days before the games to try and get the best seats in the student section!  Joe Paterno and some of his players often stop by to visit these dedicated fans, especially for big games, where students often camp out the entire week in anticipation.  Below is a video clip of one of the Blue Band’s drum majors performing his pre-game traditional flip…

The Ohio State Buckeyes marching band forms the word “Ohio” in script letters at their home games.  The letter “i” is then “dotted” by a famous alum, a dignitary, or most often, a sousaphone player.   Another Buckeye tradition occurs on the Thursday night prior to their matchup with arch-rival Michigan.  Thousands of students gather on campus at Mirror Lake and jump in the frigid waters to show their enthusiasm and zeal about the upcoming game.

Clemson vs. Florida State

Since the 1960s, Clemson players have rubbed their hands over a rock, named Howard’s Rock, before each game.  The rock is named after legendary coach Frank Howard.   Part of the tradition is also running down “The Hill”.  The players gather around the rock and then run down “The Hill” into the stadium, where more than 80,000 screaming fans await them!

Florida State’s famous flaming spear is another crowd-pleaser!  At home games a student, dressed as the famous Seminole Chief Osceola, charges down field on a horse named Renegade and thrusts a flaming spear in the middle of the field.  Click below to see this spectacular Seminole tradition.

UNC vs. Virginia Tech

UNC is known more for its basketball, rather than football, prowess.  The program has been making strides, however, and it won’t be long until the Tar Heels develop some sort of pre-game ritual that eventually becomes tradition.  But, UNC’s contribution to football is significant, as they are credited with creating the forward pass!  In an 1895 game against the UGA Bulldogs, the Tar Heels punt was about to be blocked, when the punter suddenly lobbed the ball to his teammate who went on to score and win the game!  It would be a much different game without passing, so in our opinion, that’s a pretty good tradition to have started!

We have saved the BEST for last!  Yes, the best ENTRANCE in college football belongs to Virginia Tech!  The tradition begins as players assemble in a tunnel and jump up to touch the Hokie Stone as they enter Lane Stadium.  As Metallica’s “Enter Sandman” blasts throughout the stadium, over 70,000 screaming Hokies jump up and down, creating a wild, frenzied venue.  Unless you have experienced the thrill and goose bumps firsthand, words alone do not do this amazing tradition justice.  To see what it’s all about, click below.

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