Posted: 9:45 am Friday, June 6th, 2014

Athens — and Atlanta — among best college football towns 

By Andy Johnston

You don’t have to travel far to find great college football towns.

Athens is almost always included on these kinds of lists, and there it is again, on Bleacher Report’s group of Top 25 College Football Towns for 2014.

But Atlanta — at No. 24 — also is on this list — just ahead of Iowa City — which is interesting.

A lot of folks might argue with this statement: “With Georgia Tech holding a long tradition of success and fan support,” but part of the reasoning for including Atlanta is this:

Since 1994 the Georgia Dome has hosted the SEC championship, with its winner playing for a national title every year since 2006. Additionally, one of the best bowl games (Chik-fil-A Peach Bowl) is held there each year, with this season’s clash on Dec. 31 included in the inaugural College Football Playoff system.

Atlanta’s inclusion is strange since its usually considered a pro sports city and for the fact that it’s not a town. It’s a big-time city, not a smaller college town.

But anyway, Athens is No. 11, one of seven SEC towns that are included. They are:

  • No. 21 — Gainesville
  • No. 19 — Baton Rouge
  • No. 17 — Knoxville
  • No. 16 — College Station
  • No. 9 — Auburn
  • No. 5 — Tuscaloosa

Including Atlanta, there are three ACC “towns” in the group. The others:

  • No. 13 — Tallahassee
  • No. 8 — Clemson

Of course, a many of y’all will be upset that no SEC or ACC town is higher than Tuscaloosa and the list’s top four are: Lincoln, State College, Norman … and Ann Arbor.

 

47 comments
BSNBC
BSNBC

Been to Gainesville and it wouldn't make  a top 100!

UnbiasedObserver
UnbiasedObserver

Wow, this list is way off.


Gainesville, FL is definitely a Top 10, if not higher.  Guess the author of this list has never been there.


Atlanta even being on this list is laughable.

GloryBetweenTheHedges
GloryBetweenTheHedges

Lets get one thing straight... Athens and Gainesville should be in the top 5 and and not Auburn and Alabama. That is an absolute joke of a list. 

Delusionaldog
Delusionaldog

I think Chip deserted the dogs to join the Taliban. 

gtcaryd
gtcaryd

I'm kind of partial to Cochran Park, Home of the North Henry Tigers!

DrPhill
DrPhill

Both Georgia and Auburn are special, but Athens wins in terms of garbage and drunken hooligans.

gknight
gknight

Shameful,

Give me a break,you redneck bammer.The Saturday football experience in Auburn is

legendary.

SLR
SLR

How can Athens GA not be ranked higher as a college football town? It is the quintessential college football setting. Clemson?--(are you joking?)

Princess_Leia
Princess_Leia

I can understand Athens being on the list. Most UGA players give very high marks to the jail there.

PaulinNH
PaulinNH

This is some of the worst "journalism" I have ever seen.  Did the writer even read the piece he linked?

There are 8 SEC towns listed and 4 ACC towns - not 7 and 3

SEC

Gainesville 21 Oxford 19  Baton Rouge 17   Knoxville 16  College Station 15  Athens 11  Auburn 9  Tuscaloosa 5

ACC

Atlanta 24   Blacksburg 23  Tallahassee 13  Clemson 8

KeepOnSmilingWetWillie
KeepOnSmilingWetWillie

College football is dayum great no matter the town. Nothing like a great Saturday of college football. Less than 90 days. I think the new versions of Team Gameday clothing hits the stores in July. Roll Tide

GoGeorgiaTech
GoGeorgiaTech

If you don't think Georgia Tech has a long tradition of success, then you aren't aware of college football history.

shameful
shameful

Hey Andy, I just read the article and realized that Oxford was one of the 25 and you left them off your article. That makes 8 SEC towns. 


Have a bad night last night?

gobige
gobige

You lost me at "its usually considered". Given Tuscaloosa is the highest ranked SEC school town, perhaps "it's" what a degree from Forest Gump U gets you?

shameful
shameful

It would be interesting to know the criteria they used to determine the ratings. Next year will be different and then the next, different, and so on..................Auburn! Give me a break. It is a little pasture with buildings. Tusky is a hundred times better. Clemson is a little small as well, but much better than Auburn. What is interesting is that Knoxville is listed and Baton Rouge is listed, and Oxford is not. Oxford is head and shoulders over those two. Baton Rouge is a dump as a city. Frankly, as a college town I would take Athens in the SEC.

GTAlum
GTAlum

Nice non-biased reporting Andy.  Tech was rated 18th in ESPN's last prestige rankings, so it historically has had a lot of success and fan support.  And it still has a more recent national championship than the Dawgs.  Given, things haven't been the same since O'Leary left, but all teams have dips.

FordWooton
FordWooton

I grew up in NE GA and I love Athens and Clemson, but Stillwater, OK is the best college town I have experience. I have been to a lot of college towns over the last 45 years and Stillwater tops them all. Go Dogs!

Delusionaldog
Delusionaldog

Funny, dogs can't crack the Top 10 here either. 

gobige
gobige

Which part? Having a made up cheer that has nothing to do with your mascot or toilet papering your OWN campus after a win?

Surelyyoujest
Surelyyoujest

@SLR Obviously you hav never been to a game at Clemson or you would know that their ranking is no joke.......

TampGator1
TampGator1

@SLR 


Never been to Clemson's campus, but I hear it is one spectacular college town and a beautiful campus as well. 

FBYJ
FBYJ

@PaulinNH At first I thought Andy just didn't know much about college sports ... that VPI is an ACC school and Ole Miss is an SEC school.  However, It appears that you may be right ... he didn't even read the article, because he doesn't even have the ratings correct for the teams he DID include in his article.  He shows Baton Rouge at # 19, when they are really at # 17 ... and then leaves the REAL # 19 (Oxford) off the list altogether.


As for Atlanta's presence on the list, I'm sure it's helped by Georgia Tech's historical performance, but probably not as much as by its tie to "special" games at the Georgia Dome.  Likewise, Atlanta may work its way higher on the list once the College Football Hall of Fame opens in a couple of years.  Those of us who attend Tech games know all too well that we have a hard time attracting a good crowd.  When Tech is playing UGA, Clemson, FSU, or even Miami, our stadium may be full, but it's not necessarily full of Yellow Jacket fans.  It's more like The Ted during the Braves recent series with the Red Sox ... perhaps 60% support for the home team.


While Georgia Tech hasn't had a losing season in more than 15 years, they've also had only one or two truly outstanding seasons during that period.  I believe Tech fan support would improve if we could consistently win 10+ games per year, but I'm not sure that's the highest priority for either our administration or our fan-base.

gobige
gobige

It is hard to get excited about history that happened before the invention of color tv.

PaulinNH
PaulinNH

@shameful 

He's got 3 of the rankings of the SEC towns wrong as well.

Ihateorange
Ihateorange

@GTAlum  Fan support ??? put the crack pipe down and slowly walk away.... Lets see.... fan support at Tech.....  they made their stadium smaller because they couldnt sell it out, yep that's fan support....... they have to sell 4packs with hot dogs and cokes to try to sell tickets, yep thats fan support.... they STILL cant sell out their games except against FSU, Clem and son and UGA - and that's because fans of these other schools snatch up the tickets, yep that's fan support....

Nate-the-Great
Nate-the-Great

Yall are in like a 50 year dip. O'leary was more of an aberration than reality. A lot of great history in the program but not much since 1950.

macdaddyt
macdaddyt

@FordWooton Completely agree. I love Athens on Gameday and truly enjoy the experience .... but Stillwater in 2009 was a fantastic experience. They have great tailgating and I don't recall a negative thing said to our group from their fans. We actually tailgated with their fans and they showed us around. Kudos to OK State.

GloryBetweenTheHedges
GloryBetweenTheHedges

@FordWooton I actually agree, I went to stillwater  back in 09 when we played them and enjoyed it more than Oxford a few years back. 

GSU93
GSU93

You should move up there and take thousands of your northern transplant friends with you!

Ihateorange
Ihateorange

@Delusionaldog  I'll give you Ann Arbor but Columbus is a dump. Columbus makes the old Techwood Homes housing project look like Beverly Hills.

Contractor1
Contractor1

Gotta love perspective from people that have never been to the town they're trashing. Probably never been to Athens either. Quality post by this guy. Clearly logic was his objective.

KeepOnSmilingWetWillie
KeepOnSmilingWetWillie

auburn is home of the redneck army and more fat women than you can hug. Be sure and stop by Billy Bob's BP on Wire Road for their gameday special of a Stewart sandwich and PBR.

gtcaryd
gtcaryd

@Nate-the-Great Heck Nate i reckon yall are working on about 50 years yourselves right? Well 34 and counting.

Nate-the-Great
Nate-the-Great

I think he is a nerd loser making fun of dawg fans. Trolling like a troll

GetontheGusBus
GetontheGusBus

@TampGator1 @KeepOnSmilingWetWillie He does!!!!!! Its funny to listen to all the bammers that know more about AU than there on school. They act like they don't watch the games but know every play. He is more worried about AU winning than UAT!!!!!