Sorry to burst your bubble but it is possible that there are better stadiums than Michigan's. We may have the most fans but we aren't as loud, and aren't as intimidating and imposing as Penn State's multi-leveled bowl where the sound just lingers on the field.
B1G Stadium Rankings (AthlonSports.com)
None of the things you listed necessarily make a stadium a good place to watch a game. Ford Field was head-exploding loud during the Monday Night Bears game a couple of years ago, but I have little doubt there are better NFL stadiums.
True. But having a loud and intimidating stadium with a decent-to-good team makes the experience that much better. If you can see the opponent being obviously distracted by you, it fires the crowd up.
Put yourself in the shoes of an away fan all the way up in the corner. Not everyone gets a 10th row 50 yard line view. I still think the big house is the best but hard to see when there are 90 rows ahead of you.
Ok I see the difference there. When it comes down to it, rankings are all subjective. People look for different things in a stadium. For me, it's whether it's easy to have walk around the concourse, if it's not a shithole and I have a good time even if I'm sitting in a crappy seat. Other people may put different things ahead of my criteria
The problem with that is that they put the Horseshoe at number one and the reasons listed were all things that Michigan has as well, such as tradition, cool nickname, fan support, attendence (seriously?), success... At the very least, with those criteria we should be number 2.
Typical click journalism.
Yeah, the "awesome tradition" at the Horseshoe of running into a nasty-ass lake that is no doubt rife with syphilis and ringworm by the thousands. Sounds like a great time.
I've heard Camp Randall is amazing, however.
Does anyone have the story about the amount of urine that is in the lake saved on their computer?
Great tradition there Buckeyes... wallow in your own, and thousands of others', excrement to support the team! Honestly, their fans and students appear to be a living link to our hominid ancestors. So primal and brutish.
i would probably have Michigan 3-4th... i do have to say that i do not get the whole dotting the "I" thing!
It also depends on how your rating the stadiums. Are you ranking the stadium itself or the loudness? I think we are now up there with Ohio and PSU but our tradition is definitely at the top.
I'm with you on the dotting the I. The Athlon writer is clearly from Ohio if he thinks that's something you must see before you die. Clearly has not had much experience outside small town USA. It is literally just a guy taking a bow...
Concur with your observations... I'd have Memorial Stadium (Nebraska) a little higher. I'd probably flip-flop ohio stadium and Camp Randall.
Your comments about the Illinois Memorial Stadium is spot on!! Appropriately at the bottom of this list. I understand they wanted to include the old structure, but the stands seem like 10 pounds of shit stuffed in a 5 pound bag.
I haven't been to TCF Bank or Ross-Ade.
I went to the Illinois vs Michigan in 2007 in Champaign. It was a night game, game was hyped, sat in the student section, got heckled like crazy but had fun dishing it back, it was a hell of a game, amazing atmosphere. Went back in 2009....lame. It just depends on how the game is I think.
For how much I hate Nebraska, that stadium has a crazy game day experience (likely because that's all people from Nebraska have to do).
The reality is, 1-5 in the Athlon rankings are close, small drop off to Iowa, huge drop off from Iowa (at least when they were good) to your typical game at Spartan stadium, and then another large drop off to whatever is below that.
I love Michigan Stadium, get the chills every time I walk in there, but my opinion is clearly biased. Michigan stadium doesn't get quite as loud as the multi-level stadiums, the sight lines aren't necessarily as good either. I think the entrance of touching the banner and the tradition move it higher than it is on the Athlon list, but I can see the debate.
Also, Beaver stadium will continue to make their game day suffer as it has the past couple years if they don't reduce ticket prices. That stadium is a shell of its former self.
I've been to Penn State 3 times, including 2006, which is the most fun I've ever had at an away game. The noise and the spectacle the students produce is impressive, and the tailgating set up is good (as long as it doesn't rain and you know to bring everything you need b/c it's a long walk to get any supplies) but everything else feels chintzy, from the piped in lion roars, to the lack of band, to the erector set exterior. There are also some really bad seats there in the end zone upper decks.
I far prefer Iowa, which has no bad seats, really loud fans, great tailgating but also the option to walk downtown to bars and food carts (a particularly good postgame option). As an enjoyable away game experience (admittedly different than best stadium), I'd put it up there as best in the conference. Wisconsin is similar but has more angry drunks. OSU is better than it used to be but still has an edge like someone might sucker punch you at any moment. I haven't been to Nebraska which everyone says is great.
I'm born and raised in Omaha and have been to several games. I'm not saying Memorial Stadium doesn't have a very good atmosphere, but the experience at the Big House is much bigger and better than at Memorial Stadium. I've been to The Big House, Camp Randall, and Memorial Staium, and Memorial Stadium is the worst (but still very good) of the three.
Michigan's game-day experience may be overrated, and may be deteriorating.
OSU and MSU have superior surrounding land for tailgating.
Michigan has the Blue Lot, and the golf courses, weather permitting.
They have degraded the atmosphere of the Blue Lot, by dedicating so much of it to luxury box occupants who park and then go up to the Stadium Club.
Michigan needs to do a much better job on parking/tailgating.
For locals and students, the tailgating near the stadium is amazing.
For everyone else (who doesn't know someone local), I can see how it might be an issue. I haven't experienced game day in this category, so my opinion probably counts for little.
I'd be all for a separate parking lot just for luxury box occupants so the Blue Lot is strictly for tailgaters.
I mentioned that exact problem to Bill Martin before they even began construction. Before Dave Brandon was considered for the job.
Martin was genuinely concerned about it. Not enough to turn down suite money, of course. ;-)
But enough to admit to somebody like me that it was a big problem.
btw: Brandon would like that parking structure. What he will say is that if you've got $20 million (he might be thinking of some private property), he'd love to meet with you so that they can spell your name correctly on the gifting documents.
Can we stop discussing subjective rankings of things from publications that are just trying to drive clicks? How many times has a sports site ranking the B1G stadiums over the last 5 years? How many times have they ranked the helmets? The uniforms? The bands? The straightness of the lines on the field?
I've been to 9 of 12 so far. I would put Purdue below Indiana and Illinois. TCF Bank as a stadium is great, but the atmosphere doesn't warrant moving up above Sparty sadly. I cannot argue with OSU and PSU being 1 and 2.
Athlon sports = bleacher report
False. I know what BR is. Athlon Sports??? Why don't we just start linking to the Bloomington, Indiana newspaper when they rank the stadiums. Then we can do West Lafayette! Then State College next! Oh my, we'll really show those third-year sports management/journalism majors who REALLY knows where the best stadium is!
Know what a sports website is but doesn't know about these things people used to read called "magazines." ;-)
I was buying Athlon's when I was in middle school. You really aren't much of a college football fan if you don't know Athlon's.
My Stadium Rankings:
1) Penn State 2) Michigan 3) Kinnick 4) Nebraska 5) Camp Randall... Ross-Ade at Purdue is by far the worst
There are stadiums in Kabul, Afghanistan that are nicer than Ross Ade. I think the Superdome after Katrina was nicer than Ross Ade. Purdue fans should be embarrassed. I wouldn't go number 2 in that decrepit hole of a stadium.
The fault in your logic is that you believe there are Purdue fans. I've known many people from Purdue, and almost all of them are fans of Indiana, ND, Michigan, Penn St, or somewhere else that's not Purdue.
Being from PA, I have been to games at Penn State since the '70's. It is not better than Michigan.
They make a lot of hay on their night game white-out environment, which is great, but go to a Penn State game at noon against a MAC team and you will not be overly impressed.
It's still a excellent place to watch college football, but every game there is not 2006 Penn State-Michigan. If the only game you ever saw at Michigan was UTL, you would rank it much higher than if you've gone to other games.
True. I've been to so many games in the Big House. I've only been to PSU for the 2010 night game white out against M and I was blown away. I thought it was amazing how big it was but also that it was an NFL style stadium. Vendors, an upper deck, etc. It was like an NFL stadium that seats 100k.
Frankly, noon game atmospheres stink everywhere. Remember last-year's hand-wringing about the empty stands at noon at the Swamp, of all places? The only early games I've ever been to with any punch are the big matchups (which, these days, means UM-OSU. Nationwide you can also include OU-Tx) and a Texas Tech-A&M matchup 11 years ago that was a classic but not televised.
The only way noon games get live atmospheres now is if there are surprisingly high stakes, but those games are becoming increasingly rare as the networks recognize the appeal and ratings potential of night games.
Ross-Ade is worse than Eastern, Central, and Western. Purdue has no landscape, an awful half-beige half-golden brown color is shaped like a toilet bowl and the grass looks awful.
Don't shoot the messenger! Just thought it was an interesting discussion on a slow news day.
Brace yourself. The weekend is almost here and your favorite threads will soon be created
I dont know, I have a hard time disagreeing with those rankings. But I also dont care that they've listed UM 5th either.
The Big House has never really delivered the intense, loud home crowds of PSU and Braska. Plus, those environs get a notoriety bump because everyone wears the same color every game (which, I don't know, I'm glad we all aren't decked out in the same color at our games) and the sense that there isn't anything else to do, so their game days have a little extra pizzazz. I don't know how that's measured, but I think that's what partly drives their higher rankings and stadium perception.
Wisco just always looks like one big party. Hard to top that atmosphere and I think they get graded out with extra points for the Jump Around tradish they do at the 3rd Q break. Every TV game, they either stay longer or come back from break early so viewers can see it. It's now considered a top-10 type of gameday tradition, worthy or not, through that kind of pub.
As for OSU, this is going hurt, ladies and gents. But if I put on an unbiased hat, I'd take their top-3 gameday, in-stadium traditions over ours. Script Ohio, the Hang On Sloopy at the 3rdQ break and the Carmen Ohio (I think the best alma mater song in all of football) serenade at the end of the game, all are pretty cool, to say the least. Everybody wants to see those.
Does UM even have 3 in game stadium traditions? Our players run out and touch the banner, that's cool; we have The Victors played eleventy billion times by a marching band, that both fairly and unfairly gets dinged for only knowing one song; an alma mater that nobody in the stadium even knows, except for one word in the middle. What's our 3rd in stadium tradition, anyway? Slippery Rock scores? Crappy and over reaching attempts at RAWK musak? Screaming down in front to people who dare stand?
But I don't go to UM games for the band, the banner or to forget the words of the alma mater. I go to watch my favorite football team. That's all I need and there is still no place I'd rather be on a Saturday.
Nebraska can keep the balloon flying tradition to themselves....
Our helmets have wings, one way in/out, attendence size, you walk down into the bowl, yost's seat.
Not saying it's the greatest tradition but the 3rd quarter is also the time for the wave (assuming we have the lead of course.)
Indiana needs to be on the bottem. I went to the Iowa game last year, and the stadium was half empty. No atmosphere or anything, and the PA announcer was annoying.
Spartan Stadium is a dump. It's like a large version of any MAC stadium.
and a favorite of mine: "Spartan Stadium is a concrete dump. The upper deck was designed by a 4-year old on crack."
I've been to the other stadiums in the big ten and Michigan Stadium and our stadium isn't too much quieter than the other stadiums. Kinnick Stadium in 2011 sounded a lot quieter than the Big house for a noon game at Michigan against a top 25 team. The 2011 MSU-Wisconsin hail mary game was loud but paled in comparison to UTL. Before 2010 our stadium was quieter, but now we are top 3 IMO.
My personal opinion but I would say since about 2005 to present, there has been a much better effort as a whole to make Michigan Stadium louder (or less qiuet if you want to put it that way) than it used to be. I don't think it's near as quiet as some non-Michigan fans claim it is.
Frankly, there is no place I'd rather be than at Michigan Stadium on a fall Saturday.
I agree with him. I think he has a pretty good list on hand in terms of stadium rankings. I can't argue for or against Michigan being 5th since I haven't been there yet (maybe this year?), but it would be interesting to know if these rankings were made with the renovations at Michigan in mind. Several people I know have previously said it doesn't get loud in the Big House but with the renovations aver its gotten a lot better and enjoyed their gameday experience. Of course this isn't the only metric used to evaluate a stadium or gameday experience* as traditions, tailgating, restaurants and more all factor in. I've been to 5 of 12 Big Ten Stadiums (Ohio State, Purdue, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa) and I think Camp Randall may be the best of the ones I've visited.
*In addition to this, another metric I personally use that is left out is running/biking paths. You can't beat running along Lake Mandota in Madison early in the morning...
The designated hitter rule is clearly better than artificial turf!
I wish some of our fans would get off their asses and do something during the game.
TCF Bank Stadium does not include the University in parentheses.
I know this is all pretty subjective, but come on man, Nebraska Memorial Stadium is worlds better than Kinnick or Spartan Stadium. I know its not the loudest, but as far as the overall package goes, I'd put Nebraska top 3 with UM and OSU.
Based on their criteria of fans and game day experience, I think their rankings are pretty accurate. If you are talking just the best stadium. Michigan wins hands down.
is right up their with Nebraska. Both should be in the top five. You are right on top of the field at Kinnick. Both have great fans but Nebraska is a pain to exit. They have one exit for every 4 sections. It took forever to get out of there.
I agree. Purdue is definitely the worst big ten stadium.
Ryan Field... its kind of like a home game..... But I do like how it feels like that stadium is just thrown into a neighborhood.
Blame the students for not showing up on time!
What are their measures though?
IMO the measure should be for 3 types of games...
#1 Biggest Rival game, what is the atmosphere or what ever the biggest game every year is....
#2 What is the normal atmosphere for a conference game, the avg game say iowa or northwestern, solid opponent.
#3 What is it for the gimme games.... is the place dead or are the fans still rocking.....
Pennst has the best atmosphere for a big night game, and imho that is best in the country. That said, I think Michigan's night game for ND was better than Osu's big night game for Texas or Usc... that said, Osu has a great atmosphere and nobody can deny that.
I will say this, Pennst has the most fun fans in cf, I have been around them for games at Michigan and seen them at Happy Valley and they have a good time. Osu fans are just overall pissy either way... good atmosphere but man they live and die with each individual play... and their games against bad opponents that place is a tomb...and most are.
Michigan #1, osu/nd environment is entirely different, namely osu... far more intense for a home game against either of these teams. #2 Very middle of the pack in the bigten for an avg home game...crowd gets loud for 3rd downs and intimidating but why not on 1st, 2nd, 3rd and even 4th down... Seriously... Osu/nd crowd is intense every play, every down....but not for the avg team.... #3 Lets never play eastern again...nobody wants that game and fans barely stand for the victors... I don't care what they say, in 2007 the attendance was not 100,000, I would put it closer to 80,000..........so middle of the pac of bigten teams here as well.
Michigan, basically for Big games.... is up with Pennst, and Ohio st for best envirionments....for #2 and 3 avg about #5....
#1 big game environment.. Pennst, Michigan, Ohiost and Nebraska as tops...
#2 avg conf opponents Wisconsin, Pennst, Ohio st, Nebraska, Michigan, Iowa in order...
#3 Wisconsin, Nebraska, Pennst, Ohio st, Michigan, Iowa....
Jmo but those are the order and it changes based upon opponent... Measureing Pennst's biggest night game to a noon game for michigan against iowa is not a measurement of environment... Otherwise just compare same game situations...