Drinking in Behind Enemy Lines
September 21, 2009 12:40 PM   Subscribe

Tangentially college sports-related food/drink question: At your school, was there a bar or restaurant where fans of your rival team would congregate? What I'm after is analogous to, say, a Bears bar in Green Bay, but for NCAA teams.

This is for a post on a travel blog I write for, in case you're curious, so the particular rivalry isn't all that important.
posted by me3dia to Food & Drink (9 answers total)
Eh. Ten years ago my college was not a place where there was any room for the rival school to visit - they'd tailgate or they'd find a pretty unwelcome drunken bunch of idiots... Personally I didn't care... but generally the "other side" were also a bunch of drunken idiots too.

Now with that said - after college I moved back to New England (to Boston). And maybe you know that um... Boston firmly believes that the Yankees Suck. Which, while true, doesn't discourage New Yorkers from coming to Boston for games. Apparently they even use meetup.com to organize where they will go to.

As for the thought that there could ever be a free standing Yankees bar in Boston? Well it would have to cater almost exclusively to Yankees fans, which would be economic suicide for the rest of the year. Even as a sports-bent city with sports year round - there wouldn't be sufficient occupancy during the off times to keep it in business...

1. If I were looking for displaced fans of opposing teams, I'd check the tailgates
2. If I was a displaced fan and my team was in town, I'd be checking out a meetup group for fans in my city.
posted by Nanukthedog at 1:20 PM on September 21, 2009

They'd certainly be hard-pressed to congregate anywhere, since most places within five miles are pure red on game day.

The closest thing you'd probably find are gatherings in or near where the traveling party stays. I think most basketball/hockey teams stay at a hotel about a block from the arena, and I'm guessing that the busload of moms and drunk students wearing funny hats probably stays either there or nearby. You might check with the opposing school's ticket office, since they would have the block of tickets and could provide info on where any groups would be.

(I'm also guessing that you're mainly talking about expats. I can't help you there. We must be too loyal... unlike our most recent export of note.)
posted by Madamina at 1:38 PM on September 21, 2009 [1 favorite]

It's ridiculous to even consider there will be a bar/restaurant dedicated to a team in an opponent's market which will be in town maybe three to six days a year.

Most major cities have bars dedicated to major colleges where they show the games and act as a congregation point for fans/alums.

But a FSU bar in Gainesville? Nah - not gonna happen.
posted by torquemaniac at 1:42 PM on September 21, 2009

Response by poster: The kind of place I'm talking about isn't necessarily an "official," flag flying in the window spot, but more of a situation where the Michigan fans visiting Columbus will just sort of take over for the big game, more or less every year. They don't have to cater to that fanbase every day -- hell, they may not even cater to them that day -- but it's where all those fans show up anyway.
posted by me3dia at 1:49 PM on September 21, 2009

There's a couple places in the SF Bay Area that are unofficial (or semi-official) gathering spots for all games - Double D's in Los Gatos is an example, as the SV alumni club mets there on Saturdays to watch every game. Blue Light and Underdogs does the same in SF.

Note that you're both talking about a market with a large number of alumni from the largest alumni association out there as well as a market without a terribly strong sporting tradition per se. I also know of a lot of places that play home-away-from-home for the Pittsburgh Stillers in SF and beyond, for another example of a widespread rabid expat scene.
posted by kcm at 2:21 PM on September 21, 2009

Hmm, my update was munged a bit - I was also talking about Michigan football.
posted by kcm at 2:22 PM on September 21, 2009

Not college, but the Herkimer in uptown Minneapolis is a Green Bay Packers bar. Cite here at number 115, and I observed it in person one afternoon when the Herkimer emptied out shortly before the Vikings beat Green Bay.
posted by clavicle at 2:30 PM on September 21, 2009

...oh, shoulda read your whole question, sorry!
posted by clavicle at 2:31 PM on September 21, 2009

In my experience as a visiting fan, you just go to the tailgate. And yes, there are often sections of the tailgate unofficial dedicated to the visitors.
posted by smackfu at 4:27 PM on September 21, 2009

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