It’s COLLEGE Football. Enough With The Neutral Site Games: Daily Cavalcade

College football games should be played in college stadiums. One man’s desperate plea to keep the games out of neutral sites and away from the gimmick.

Keep COLLEGE football games at colleges

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Sorry if this take sucks, it’s not my fault …

I’d move this take to Wrigley Field but there’s no parking.

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Now, if you could figure out how to play a game on an aircraft carrier like college basketball does early in the season, I’m in

It’s called COLLEGE football.

I’m not a total idiot – just a partial one – and I’m fully aware that college sports is first and formost a business.

Of course we’re in a new age of college athletics where the quiet part is being said – and paid – out loud, but can’t we at least pretend that college football is different because of the college part?

Yeah, college football is about generating revenue, cranking up national interest, and occasionally coming up with something special and unique when games are played outside of their normal venues, but …

Enough with the occasional games being played in dumb baseball stadiums – it’s cool once, and that’s it – with dumb sight lines and dumb configurations.


Enough with the neutral site games other than the obvious traditional mainstays like Florida vs Georgia in Jacksonville and Texas vs Oklahoma in Dallas.

Quit playing the “Classic” or the “Kickoff” in some antiseptic NFL stadium – by the way, ignore all of this when it comes to the NFL, which should play all of its games in billion-dollar palaces with all of the ultimate creature comforts – instead of on or near a college campus on an early Fall day.

When – not if – I become the Czar of College Football, I’m forcing the branding to be all about the environment, the campus, the atmosphere … the COLLEGE.

That’s the No. 1 distinguishing factor of college football.

Take the romantic notion of a September day with the youthful energy and life of a college campus out of it, and what do you have, really? Minor league professional football.

Of course, not all stadiums are right on the campuses – like UCLA playing in the Rose Bowl – but almost all are close enough to either be a part of the overall environment.

It became more real now that I have a kid in college. She likes sports about as much as I understand why 19-year-old young women wear unnecessarily giant pants, but being around a big-time college basketball environment has turned into a big deal.

Being able to go to the football games – and the buzz around them – matters. That’s the part that’s starting to get lost – and this goes for the Tuesday night games, too, but that’s for another time – it’s supposed to be about the student experience. It’s supposed to be for the fans and alumni who get to escape to a college environment for a Saturday.

And it’s supposed to be about the games themselves.

It gets blown off whenever the big showdowns are put in NFL houses, and I have no idea why the conferences haven’t figured this out. The games take on a greater sense of importance when they’re in college home stadiums.

How cool was it that Michigan State played across the country in Washington’s Husky Stadium?

How big a deal did it turn out to be that Penn State went to Jordan-Hare and performed like THAT against Auburn?

How much more did Alabama’s win over Texas feel like a big deal because it was in Austin and not in Jerry World? How much more insane would Florida State’s win over LSU have been if that was in Tallahassee?

Fans only get a few of these college football home games a year. It’s not like there are 81 home baseball games to suffer through or 41 NBA relative exhibitions to pretend to care about.

If you’re going to give the home fans the Central Directional State matchups, give them the games against the big guys, too. Always give them the experience of having a powerhouse in their house.

This is a layup, college football. Feed into your own mythology.

Stay college football, college football.

Story originally appeared on College Football News