I played in just about every stadium in the SEC, with the exception of the two recent expansion teams — Texas A&M and Missouri — as well as LSU and Mississippi State. I’ve excluded those schools from the rankings since I don’t have firsthand experience with them.
While it is NEVER easy to win on the road in the SEC, here’s my list of the toughest road stadiums.
The top of this list could change in any order to be honest. They all have a very rambunctious fan base.
1. The Swamp: It’s arguable that The Swamp is the loudest venue in all of college football. I remember in 2010 when Andre Debose returned the opening kickoff for a touchdown and I couldn’t even hear what coach was saying next to me. It was brutal. The fans seem to be right on top of you because of the way the stadium is built.
2. Auburn: Jordan-Hare was pretty damn loud as well. While it was pretty silent when we had the lead on them in 2010, toward the end of that game it got deafening.
3. Georgia: Georgia was also pretty intense, especially pregame. I don’t think I can remember any other stadium being as loud and obnoxious during the pregame than Georgia. I remember one fan talking crazy trash to me before I walked out. Our strength coach ripped that guy a new one. I’ll never forget what he said and I wish I could repeat it for y’all, but this is a family website.
4. Alabama: This is another stadium that got pretty wild pregame. I don’t recall it being extremely loud or anything during the game. I think they just expect to win every game and don’t feel like they even need to get loud. Which is understandable given their recent successes.
5. Arkansas: Believe it or not, I really enjoyed playing at Arkansas. We didn’t win there, but those fans are the most clever in my opinion. They said some stuff that had our entire team laughing. It wasn’t overly loud or obnoxious, but definitely had some funny things to say.
6. Tennessee: One would think that Neyland Stadium would be higher up on the list. The only thing I remember about Tennessee was the Rocky Top song being played the entire game. It was excruciating. It’s one of the nicest stadiums in the SEC though, no question about that. The sheer size of it is amazing, plus the river right beside it was pretty cool.
7. Ole Miss: It’s not the biggest stadium in the world, although I believe they recently added to it. However, when we played there in 2008 I remember it not getting as loud as maybe I expected. We also had a lead on them throughout the entire game so maybe that played a factor. It was a beautiful campus and very cool stadium though.
8. Kentucky: Ah Kentucky, your stadium still haunts me to this day. I’ll never forget in 2010 when we were beating the Wildcats badly at halftime. We came back on the field to get ready for the second half when they introduced the basketball players. The stadium when NUTS! And then they proceeded to beat us. Freaking nightmarish.
9. Vanderbilt: Vandy has a very cool stadium in the heart of Nashville. It was one of my favorite cities to travel to. It just wasn’t loud there at all. It did get amped a few times, but I was still able to communicate with my teammates pretty easily.
I wish I had the chance to play at LSU because from all the stories, I’m sure that would probably top the list.
Please comment below and let me know what your list would look like from a fan’s perspective at an away stadium!