Even though Lexington lies on the northern portion of SEC country, the southern flavor still lives strongly in Kentucky. The scenery toward Lexington is what one might expect with rolling hills giving way to fenced in horse pastures. Additionally, the fans might be what most expect as hoards of devoted tailgaters surround the stadium and songs like, “Shootin’ Rabbits With a 22,” tend to remind visitors that they are in the south. The wide mass of fans dressed in blue moves like ocean waves toward Commonwealth Stadium to watch the band perform its traditional parade around the stadium prior to kickoff. Kentucky’s band bangs out “Kentucky Fight” while fans stop to cheer along.
Inside, the stadium has maintained its charm including two upper decks stretching high into the Bluegrass breeze. The band plays the alma mater and “My Old Kentucky Home” while fans file in.
The Wildcats’ entrance into the stadium ranks near the top in showmanship. It all begins with the call to post. A bugler plays the popular anthem that begins all major horse races, thus calling forth a major tradition in the state of Kentucky. Suddenly, fireworks blast from the twenty yard line, while smoke billows out from the tunnel. Kentucky emerges and the crowd erupts. The scene is thouroughly electric.
During the game, one side of the stadium will scream, “WHITE!,” while the other side returns, “BLUE!” First downs result in the entire crowd exalting, “FIRST DOOOOOOOWN KENTUCKY!!!” The stadium is collegiately picturesque as it rests among Kentucky’s rolling landscape.
Being in the SEC automatically translates Kroger Field into an atmosphere that is going to be saturated with energy and loyalty to the big blue nation, and that aspect does not disappoint. In other words, Kentucky basketball isn’t the only sport in which these fans invest their emotions.