Georgia vs Bama Fans
As a life long fan of football, I have always found myself rooting for the underdog. So, when it comes to NCAA Football, I have rarely been rooting for either Georgia or Alabama. But, when the two faced off in the National Championship game, I had to root for Georgia seeing how they hadn’t won a title since 1980. Alabama on the other hand seems to win it just about every year. However, that doesn’t make me a Georgia fan as I’m not a fair weather type of guy.
After so many interactions both good and bad with fans of both teams and writing about the sport for so long I thought to myself; who does have the best fans?
If you are still reading this, I assume you are either a Bulldog or a Crimson Tide for life type of fan. I don’t want to keep you waiting, so lets just get into it. I will break down a few areas and see who edges out who.
One thing I have learned over the years about college football fans is many are fickle. They may not want to claim their team on a down year. When it comes to fans of both Alabama and Georgia, this isn’t an issue. Both teams fan bases are true to their team year after year, game after game.
Not only do they never waiver in their support, they will damn near fight you if you have something bad to say about their team. This is a trait that many would look down upon, but one I kind of admire. The terms “Roll Tide” and “Sic em” are ones they hold in high regard. Fans love to holler these at both a college frat party, as well as a high class function with suit and ties. One of my favorite past colleagues is a devout Georgia fan and wears his Georgia gear with pride to all events no matter what the occasion or dress code.
Result: I have to say this one is a tie.
While browsing Bulldogs websites, forums, and groups you will find crazed fans who may say a bit more behind their keyboard then they would in person. I’m not sure if this is the result of years of losing to Alabama, or just plain old keyboard courage? All I know is some of the things I have seen, heard, and read I wouldn’t want my kids to hear.
This is especially true when I see Bulldog fans interact with Bama fans. Sometimes I don’t know whether to get the popcorn, or board up my windows. It can feel like World War 3 is on the verge. My only regret never getting to see the two ever actually duke it out!
Although I would say the interactions I have had and seen with Bama fans would be considered more pleasant, I am not naive. I know they aren’t perfect, but as a parent I would feel much more comfortable letting my kids take part in a Roll Tide forum.
As for the Us vs. Them interactions, I think I might be more afraid of some of the Bama fans. I will blame this on the fact that we as a country have been led to believe people from Alabama are crazy and will probably kill us. Maybe it’s because they make a lot of scary horror movies there.
The big take away I have in this realm regarding Alabama fans is they seem to be slightly poor sports. They are quick to remind Georgia fans who has reigned supreme atop the NCAA football world. As a result, they rarely admit defeat or say “Good Game!” I am not a participation trophy fan, but I am a fan of winning with humility and losing with grace.
Result: I give the edge to Alabama fans here as my kids can actually help me read their comments.
As a journalist and football analyst, I am lucky to be able to see the metrics that not many others can. When we talk about supporting your team it’s not just throwing on the old worn out T-shirt and yelling at the TV on Saturday. It’s knowing who is being recruited, what type of defense the team runs, reading team articles, and supporting players when they are struggling. Obviously there is more to it than that, but I wanted to make the point I don’t care who can scream the loudest.
I wanted to look and see who really supports their team. Unfortunately, for one fan base this wasn’t even close. When looking at the metrics of who actually chimes in with words of encouragement rather then slander one team stands out. Who actually reads articles and digs deeper for information regarding their team? Who shares more on social media in a positive nature about their team when they are struggling?
Georgia fans clearly have won this round. Yes, even with bad examples like the ones featured in this usatoday article. It’s not even close in my opinion. One of my close friends is a huge “Roll Tide” fan. When I showed him the metrics of how engaged Georgia Fans are and how much they actually read about their team he said “Yeah, of course they read more. We’re too busy winning!”
Another close contact who is a Georgia Alum, when shown the same metrics said “That’s because people from Alabama can’t read.”
I don’t know which is true, but the numbers don’t lie. Both fan bases can sleep easy knowing they are super loyal, almost to a fault. But, as a writer and analyst, I love to see the fans engaged. So for now I have to say Georgia Fans are the winners! Maybe next year we can re-evaluate?