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DK Royal Stadium versus the Shoe....

Discussion in 'Buckeye Football' started by PhxBuckeye, Mar 23, 2005.

  1. PhxBuckeye

    PhxBuckeye Newbie

    I want to start a separate thread concerning Ohio Stadium and the game day atmosphere at OSU compared to Texas' DK Royal Memorial Stadium and game day in Austin. Now, I have only been to UT twice for a game compared to the dozens of times I've been to Ohio Stadium so I can only speak so much on UT. I've also so attended at least one game at all of the following schools: (michigan, Penn State, Purdue, Indiana, ND, USC, Alabama, Tennessee, UCLA, Arizona, Arizona State, Nebraska, Texas A&M, Miss State and Southern Miss).

    I'm posting this because I hear so much crap from both OSU and UT fans about this game, the anticipated atmosphere and its affect on the game. First I liked my time in Austin. It's a cool college town. UT has without a doubt great facilities and as talented of a football team as there is in the country. Game day there is festive and they do party at a high level. DK Royal Stadium is cool, but not as impressive as Ohio Stadium or a few of the other places I've seen games. That's just a fact, not a slam. It's a little too open to be very noisy, the fans are not right on top of the players like at some other stadiums, and while it's a good size stadium it's not even close to Neyland, Beaver Stadium or Ohio Stadium.

    Now to be an intimidating stadium you have to have more than just a big and loud building. I hear games in Morgantown and Blacksburg are crazy and those are not huge places. To be really intimidating you have to have a good and nasty team that plays in that house (Texas has that). Sun Devil Stadium, where I've seen dozens of games, is pretty big, but it's rarely sold out and the Devils usually plays like a bunch of lambs. Miami doesn't sell out too much but the 'Canes are fast and physical. Michigan Stadium is huge but it's a piece of crap and really not too intimidating, however, they have a great football team (and anyone who compares game day atmosphere in AA to Columbus has clearly never been there).

    Here's the real difference between DK Royal and the Horseshoe, the fans. Texas' fans treat the game like it's a social function to be seen at. They dress to impress each other more so than to party and get crazy about football. Most of the fans at OSU are about football. I always hear how Texas as a state has a great "football culture." I can say that while I was in College Station I saw some of this, but really I have not seen a state, or fans that are as crazy or knowledgeable about football at ALL LEVELS as those in Ohio. Maybe this says something that's not very flattering about those of us who are from Ohio, but it's just a fact. I can remember games at the Shoe where there were 100,000 people inside, but another 200,000 outside who didn't even have tickets. I didn't see anything like this at most of the other schools I've visited, especially in the Pac-10.

    Now make no mistake, none of this will help OSU on September 10th against UT. The Horns have every bit the talent OSU does, and maybe a little more.

    As far as how I would rank the places I've seen games at far as atmosphere goes it would be like this.

    Nebraska, Ohio State and Tennessee are at the top. PSU, ND Alabama and Texas A&M are in the next group. Michigan, Texas and USC (if it's a really big game) are next. Arizona, Arizona State, Indiana and UCLA are not even worth talking about. The best thing about UCLA is that Passadena is a cool town and the Rose Bowl is in a great neighborhood.

    I think Alabama, Ohio State and most of the Nebraska fans are very knowledgeable about the Xs and Os of the game and I really respect that.

    One thing that IMHO, seems to hurt the atmosphere at DK Royal (and I could be totally off base, but it was just my observation) is that there are so many UT fans and alums who have a lot of money taking up most of the prime area to tailgate that a lot of the real football fans are forced out of the spots where all of the activity is based. It seems like it's the same situation in the stadium too.

    Also, while I think it's cool that UT and Oklahoma play their rivalry game at a neutral site within the state fair, if you've ever been to the Cotton Bowl you know it's a total piece of crap. That place needs some serious renovations. It's like Legion Field in Birmingham, Alabama. A legendary place, but a real hole. Legion Field is even in a crappy neighborhood. I don't know why Alabama would ever play any of its games in that place. Bryant-Denny is a much nicer place.

    Go Bucks!!! In Tress We Trust.

    P.S. I've never been to one of the night games at the Shoe and I'm really looking forward to this one.
     
  2. scooter1369

    scooter1369 HTTR Forever.

    Great write up. If I could award posts, I would.

    If you haven't been to a night game in Ohio Stadium, you're in for a treat. The atmosphere, the crowd, the electric sensation in the air are remarkable. I've been to a few now, and there isn't anyplace I'd rather be on a Saturday night.
     
  3. sears3820

    sears3820 Sitting around in my underwear....

    I've also been to games at both DKR Texas Memorial Stadium and The 'Shoe and there is no comparison.

    The atmosphere on gameday in Austin isn't even in the same ballpark as it is in Columbus. It's not even the same sport.
     
  4. High Lonesome

    High Lonesome Hook 'Em

    while i will agree with you that dkr cannot be compared to the shoe i would say that gameday in austin compares with almost anywhere, save maybe baton rouge.

    that being said I would like to add a couple of places that were left out of the original post... the swamp, death vally(baton rouge not clemson) Between the hedges in georgia, and feyetville, ark. the sec has some of the best venues and crowds in college football.

    the mention of the texas alumni was also dead on. Texas, right or wrong, rewards its doners very well. the more money you give the better seats you will get. In fact the reason that the erwin center is so quiet is because all of the good seats for basketball games are given to big money football doners. Half of them don't even like basketball!

    Game day in austin takes place all over down town, you cant really just look around the stadium. While there is plenty of tailgating around the stadium, many people go to schultz' garden or other bars downtown, sixth street is almost always packed by the time a game rolls around. If you want to talk about inside the stadium then the best crowd i have ever seen is at Kyle field. they dont tailgate for shit and There team has been down as of late, but aTm fans are second to non in my opinion.
     
  5. Buckeye86

    Buckeye86 I do not choose to discuss it

    The Shoes best seats go for a pretty penny also. Box seats on the 50 yrd line are 75,000 and go down to 50,000 as you move away from the 50. That's for season tickets of course. And I'm not quite sure about club seats but I believe they are around 15,000 per year? I also heard something about how they are so difficult to get that you can pass them down to family members when you pass away.

    It seems to me that one of the best parts about a game is the atmosphere. Slapping hands wildly with people you don't even know, hugs from complete strangers, getting landed on by some guy from a couple rows up who lost his balance and fell from jumping around so much (maybe that's just a student section phenomenon :biggrin: ... actually happened to me when Ginn ran the punt back in The Game).

    But anyways, sitting all alone with a few friends in a box, or comfortably seated in the club seats with plenty of space between you and the people around you, seems like it would isolate you from the atmosphere of the game.

    Also it always seems like the club seats are the first ones to empty if the game isn't going quite the way we would like (ala Wisconsin last year :( ).

    So even if I had the means to buy some of the more expensive seats in the stadium, I think I would pass it up so I could be crammed in between some strangers who are as crazy as I am and truly enjoy the best part of the game, the atmosphere.

    Disclaimer: I'm sure people with club seats are just as big of fans as everyone else. Just seems like they'd be a little isolated, which I don't think would be very much fun.
     
  6. scooter1369

    scooter1369 HTTR Forever.

    I like my seat in the south endzone, front row and center. I've interacted with more oppposing players there. Its fun to fuck with them.
     
  7. IrontonBuck

    IrontonBuck Walk On

    I despise the club seats. That block of seats is often half empty during a game. Corporations owning blocks of seats that don't all get used, people who don't give a damn about the game getting the tickets, and the ample booze available at the top of the steps are to blame. It would be embarassing to see, if the seats weren't camoflaged by being red.

    I'm just happy that Ohio Stadium is so vast that the atmosphere can't be dampened by any one group of people. Not so for the Schott, but that's another story.
     
  8. ive been to both kyle field and darrell k royal texas memorial stadium and kyle field. dkr was disappointing, i am sorry, but its just not the same. ive walkedaround on the field 30 mins before kickoff and it doesnt have the straight up all around shit your pants factor of the shoe. i would say its kind of like a smaller penn state, penn state is huge it just doesnt intimidate you. i remember watching the san diego state-michigan game on tv and the quaterback saying in an interview "this is the big house? this aint nothing compared to what ohio states got" the shoe is just so steep and tall its hard to compare to. kyle field is LOUD all the time...but ill take the shoe on a big third down hands down. i remember a similar arrogant asinine comment from a few ncstate fans........anyone remember what those guys have to say.
     
  9. EngineerHorn

    EngineerHorn No todo alli

    There was once a track between the stands and the field. That probably contributes quite a bit to the lack of "being on top of the action" feel. Also our horseshoe is about 40 yards away from the field at some points- that's too far to add to the intimidation factor.

    And as always, the blue hairs get the best seats and for the most part just sit on their hands. Students are spread out all over the place as well.

    For those who have been to DKR, what games were they? The reason I ask is that our home crowds really only get up for 1-2 games per year outside of the TX-OU game. Against the Baylors, Colorados, and Missouris of the world, our home game atmosphere kinda sucks.

    But for the big games, I'd put our home crowd up against just about anyone else's. During the Okie State comeback last year, I had a few friends watching from a house in the middle of Tarrytown, which is about 3 miles away. Even at that distance and with a major highway between them, the crowd noise was audible. I was there, and my ears were ringing for a week. I have a big list of other great games at DKR, but I don't want to bore anyone by listing them.

    So in conclusion, when the Buckeyes come to town in 2006, the atmosphere will be more like the latter of the two crowd modes I described.

    But if I had to make a comparison between the two I would definitely have to say the Horseshoe is the better venue. That stadium really does look intimidating. I'm really looking forward to the experience.

    Tailgating: I'm biased, but I wouldn't trade our scene with anyone else's. Barbecue and beer as far as the eye can see. There really isn't one central area though, so that might lead to an inaccurate perception. As my fellow Horn above said, pregame festivities take place as far south as 6th street. The state parking lots just north of the capitol building have the highest concentration.

    I guess I'll just have to wait the short 18 months to see what you folks have to say about it. :wink2:

    And for anyone who cares, this is in the works: [​IMG]

    We won't see it for at least another decade though.


    Here's how it looks now:
    [​IMG]
     
    MililaniBuckeye likes this.
  10. if i had my choice id bring the southern folks up in fall late october or november, that is when college football is the best, a cool, crsip day.
     
  11. High Lonesome

    High Lonesome Hook 'Em

    I think that it is funny what "football weather" is to different people in different places. Ask anyone in the north east and they will tell you that it is a snow filled day in buffalo, in the midwest its a cool crisp day in late fall, ask any kid on friday night in texas and the mention of football brings memories of blazing heat and muddy feilds. Its all relative and it has now become official, THE OFF SEASON SUCKS!!

    Aahhh the infamous "master plan" I can only pray that DKR is that increadable one day.
     
  12. sears3820

    sears3820 Sitting around in my underwear....

    I went to the Tech game in '03. I was very impressed with the Red Raider fans I encountered. Party animals!!!! I am somewhat biased though because I worked with about 5 Tech grads when I lived in Austin.

    The Texas crowd I came into contact with was somewhat reserved and rather stuffy. Just a bunch of well-to-do alumni who were standing around seeing who had the bigger cock.
     
  13. Jaxbuck

    Jaxbuck I hate tsun ‘18 Fantasy Baseball Champ


    You should have put on a block M hat and you'd have been the biggest cock there. :wink2:
     
  14. PhxBuckeye

    PhxBuckeye Newbie

    EngineerHorn,


    My first trip to DKR was several years ago to see UT play UCLA. I also saw Texas play UCLA at the Rose Bowl a couple of years later, or maybe it was even the following year. I also saw UT play the Huskers at DKR. I was with a friend who is engaged to a girl who use to be a UT trainer, so we had access to all of the facilities. They're pretty impressive. Some of them were so nice that they were really more show than functional. Some of the lounge areas are so nice it makes me wonder if its kind of made the Horns soft. IMHO, under Mack UT has very few wins it can point to and say "see we balled up and beat a team that's on our level." Of course there are not many programs on UT's level when it come to talent, so maybe they haven't had many opportunities.

    In your opinion, what are the five best wins during the Mack Brown era? Also, what are the five worst losses. I don't mean by score, however, if you got blown out that would qualify too. Any UT fan please feel free to answer these questions. I think a lot of the reason why so many OSU fans feel confident about this game is because under Tressel, OSU has been pretty clutch in big games.

    Also, the photo of the model of DKR with the renovations reminds me a lot of Nebraska's stadium. Did you know the people who built the original part of Nebraska's stadium designed it to be a smaller version of Ohio Stadium? Since NU has done so much work to its stadium its end zone seats are a lot closer to the field than at OSU. Nebraska is one of my favorite places to see a game. Their fans are great people too.

    Thanks in advance.

    Go Bucks!!! In Tress We Trust.

     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2005
  15. EngineerHorn

    EngineerHorn No todo alli

    First, I'd have to agree about the Nebraska fans. I had a bunch of friends at the last UT-NU game in Lincoln, and they were shocked at how gracious and friendly they were. I also ran into a bunch last year in Omaha for the College World Series, and they lived up to their reputation. Memorial Stadium in Lincoln is at the top of my must-see list, with the Horseshoe also up there (I'll be doing that this September).

    You're not alone in drawing that conclusion about the facilities. Some of us feel the same- that it's made the team a bit soft. I'm not saying it has, but the point is valid.

    Five best wins in no particlar order:
    -2005 Rose Bowl (duh)
    -1998 Nebraska in Lincoln to break their 50 something game home winning streak. The Nebraska faithful gave Ricky Williams a standing ovation as time expired- VERY classy. We broke another 20 something game home winning streak there 4 years later in 2002, but that Nebraska squad was mediocre at best.
    -1999 Nebraska, sounds like the game you were at. They were ranked #2 or #3, I forget which.
    -2002 KSU in KSU Stadium. They have a very underrated home field advantage in Manhatten. Normally that's a game we lose because our offense stunk, but we pulled out the win. I think they were ranked #7 at the time.
    -1998 Texas A&M. They were around 6 and were favored because we had just come off a close loss to Tech. But this game sticks out the most because Ricky broke the rushing record.

    There's a few other so-so wins, including 2003 KSU, 1999 Cotton Bowl, 2003 Nebraska, 2001 Holiday Bowl (Major Applewhite's farawell game), 2004 Tech and OSU, but nothing that really stands out.

    Worst Losses:
    -First, the most painful. 2001 Big 12 Championship game. Chris Simms' meltdown. We win that game, and we're playing Miami for the National Championship. I was angry for months after that. That was the game that started the "can't win the big one" stigma.
    -2003 Oklahoma. It's too painful to type the score. Players didn't show up, coaching was piss poor, etc. Awful.
    -2000 Oklahoma. See above.
    -2004 Holiday Bowl. We were favored by double digits, but somehow couldn't figure out how to pick up a blitz. That was the worst display of coaching I have ever seen.
    -2003 Arkansas. More inept coaching.
    -I can go on, and on, and on, and.......

    There's been a theme with Mack Brown losses at UT, at least with me. Out of his 19 losses, I can only remember 3 where I wasn't completely disgusted with the coaching and/or playcalling. Sometimes, you watch your team lose a game, but aren't too pissed off because your team played their best but just flat out got beat by a better team. I haven't felt that way at all during the Brown era.

    Needless to say, I feel tOSU has the edge in coaching. That's not to say I think Mack sucks as a coach. But as I have described above, he's a little more likely to blow a game than Tressel.
     

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