Welcome to the first edition of my College Football Game Day Experience Rating. In this series I will be reviewing different college football game day experience based on 5 different categories including, the stadium, tradition, campus, tailgate scene, and overall fan engagement. For each category I will be giving a score of 1-10 with up to 1 decimal point. With a total score of 50 possible anything over 40 will be considered one of the best, anything over 30 will be a good experience still anything in the 20’s will be considered average with anything under 20 being not the best. With that we go ahead and take a look at the first team of my review, Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana which I got to visit week 2 of this season when Notre Dame took on my alma-mater, the Ball State Cardinals.
Stadium – 9.6/10
Notre Dame is one of the most historic places in college football, the Notre Dame stadium lived up to the hype. One of the best stadiums I have ever been to. The thing that amazed me with Notre Dame’s stadium was how well nice it was despite how old it is. Notre Dame has done a great job with renovations and upkeep. The stadium has all the amenities of a new stadium with the feel of an old historic stadium. The Stadium holds just over 80,000 but there really isn’t a bad seat in the house including the seat I was in from the picture above or from 5 feet from the field where I was lucky enough to stand during the 4th quarter thanks to the head coach of Ball State, Mike Neu and his family. Overall the stadium is one of the best in the stadium and if you get a chance to watch a game here definitely do it!
Tradition – 9.5/10
Another high score and as I mentioned, of the most historic places in the nation. Notre Dame is full of rich history from the play like a champion sign to touchdown Jesus, you really feel like you are in a historic place when you are here. The only thing that may be lacking is some in game traditions you see from some other teams but overall a very good score here.
Campus – 7.6/10
I may get some hate here on this and maybe because it was so hyped up but the area wasn’t as impressive as I thought it would be. This really isn't a knock on the campus itself because the campus was nice and clean. This is more about the area around campus. Once you get off campus there really wasn't much and South Bend isn't really the nicest place once you leave Notre Dame.
Tailgate - 8.2/10
I give it the benefit of the doubt that it was week 2 against a mid major but the tailgate scene wasn’t great. Still a very good scene and the main tailgate area is set up nice in a huge lot right outside of the stadium. Like I mentioned anything over 8 is a great score but I think its barely great. A lot of energy and excitement that made it a great time, just didn’t have anything that made it stand apart like the first two categories I mentioned.
Fan Engagement/Aptmosphere– 9.2/10
Notre Dame has a very strong fan base and very loyal and passionate fans. I was very impressed with their fans both in their knowledge of the game and respect they showed. A lot of teams with this much success and tradition has fans that are total dicks and rude if you are wearing visitors gear but there was a lot of respect from the Notre Dame fans and overall a very solid fan base.
Overall score – 44.1/50
Overall a very strong score, I know this is the first one but this is the highest score given and probably will be for a while, I would say If I did this across the country less than 20 schools would be over 40 and probably less than 5 would score over a 45. One of the best places to watch a game in the nation no doubt and the way Notre Dame is playing now definitely an exciting time in South Bend.