It’s easy for online betting fans to come up with the five toughest places to play in college football based on noise, intimidation or drunken fansthis list is a little different though. The quality of a team goes a long way to establishing atmosphere in a stadium. Thus, in this Top-5 list of hardest places to win in college football, we’re not just talking size and scope of the crowdyou better have a damn good football team as well. That means no Michigan and no Oklahoma on this list (at least until Sam Bradford is healthy). Let’s do it:
1. The Swamp (Ben Hill Griffin Stadium), Florida Gators
Every Saturday, nearly 90,000 screaming maniacs crowd into The Swamp to make lives terrible for opposing quarterbacks. Thanks to a design that puts the playing surface below ground level, as well as several expansions, fans are within feet of the action. Throw in humid temperatures, loyal fans and the fact that Florida is a perennial top-5 program and you’ll be hard-pressed to pull off a victory in The Swamp.
2. The Horseshoe (Ohio Stadium), Ohio State Buckeyes
With a capacity of over 100,000, few stadiums can compete with the colossal size of The Horseshoe. How loud does it get there? In 1985, Iowa head coach Hayden Fry complained the fans were too overwhelming for his quarterback to call plays and suggested a sound gauge be used to measure the noiseand home teams should be penalized if things got out of hand. That’s loud.
3. The Blue (Bronco Stadium), Boise State
With seating for only 33,500, Bronco Stadium proves you shouldn’t always put on a price per head. This stadium is better known for its blue turf, but it should be known for the absolute dominance that’s taken place there over the past few years. How dominant? A 66-2 record since 1999, including a current streak of 51 consecutive regular-season games. If its not hard to play there, how come nobody can find a way to beat the Broncos? Here’s a betting system for you: always pick Boise State at home.
4. The Coliseum, USC
The Coliseum seats over 90,000 fans and it’s proven to be nearly impossible to win there over the past few years; the Trojans have won 17 of their last 18 games at home, with the sole loss coming by just one point. It’s no wonder USC dominates NCAA football odds and pumps out championship seasons like it’s going out of style.
5. Death Valley (Tiger Stadium), LSU
Noise in this 90,000-plus capacity stadium has been recorded as high as 130 decibels10 decibels louder than a jet plane at takeoff and just 10 short of the threshold of pain. In 1988, after a last-second touchdown pass brought LSU from behind to win, the crowd reacted so wildly they legitimately registered an earthquake on campus. Considering LSU has been one of college football’s better teams over the past decade, nobody wants to venture to Baton Rouge anytime soon.