College Football’s Top 20 FBS Super Fans
If the NFL is considered America’s new religion, then the college game is our nation’s biggest cult. The most rabid U.S. sports fans, millions of them fill stadiums across the country each fall Saturday and literally live and die college football..
In what other American sport can you find a fan like Giles Pellerin? The greatest college football super fan ever, he viewed 797 consecutive USC football games – home and away – before passing away at the age 91 in the parking lot of the Rose Bowl during the second half of the 1998 USC-UCLA game. His streak stretched all the way back to 1926, nine years before the first Heisman Trophy was handed out.
Or how about Cecil Samara? Oklahoma’s super fan that used to drive his Model-T car to each home game before passing away in 1994, Samara was buried in his trademark red jacket, an OU tie and Sooner belt buckle. He had “Boomer Sooner” played at his funeral, but his family decided against Samara’s wishes to have his index finger put in the “No. 1” position in his casket.
Whether they have a ridiculously long consecutive attendance streak, dress up like it’s Halloween, have become performers on game days or complete other acts of sheer lunacy, all these super fans ask is to be recognized for their dedication.
So as diehards endure another tortuously long summer in preparation for the 2010 college football season, we honor the greatest fans in the FBS. As featured on ESPN.com, here’s our list of the Top 20 College Football Super Fans based on their passion, loyalty, flair and celebrity status on campus.
20. Barry Erickson (Washington)
19. Tom Pounds (Washington State)
18. Terri Jackson (Utah)
17. John Chubb (Ohio State)
16. Mike Woods (Georgia)
15. Nathan Davis (Alabama)
14. Jim Brown (Kentucky)
13. John Sheldon (Michigan State)
12. Robert Lipson (Kansas State)
11. Paul Layne (SMU)
10. Lance Smith (Vanderbilt)
9. Wendell Wolka (Purdue)
8. Freeman Reese (Alabama)
7. Dwayne Gilbert (Georgia)
6. Mitch Lavinghouze (Ole Miss)
5. Tony Brandino (Alabama)
4. Tommy Thompson (Iowa)
3. Tom Ables (San Diego State)
2. George Edmondson (Florida)
1. Dick Coffee (Alabama)