Camp Randall Stadium
Best Seat in the House
- Too often the game taking place on the football field is compared to a war or a battle; however at Camp Randall perhaps that association isn't that far off. Once a training ground for Union troops during the Civil War, Camp Randall breeds a tough and physical mindset for all who enter its halls. It begs even the casual observer to keep true to the maintaining of a home-field advantage. Sit in Section Y2, it's the vantage point that offers the best view of the entire stadium as well as the field of play. The Badgers' sideline is directly in front of you, the field house is just an arms-length to your left. Make sure to stick in your section between the third and fourth quarters, as "Jump Around" plays and the stadium sways you'll realize there's no better atmosphere in college football than right there at that very moment.
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ROSE BOWL MATCHUP
Oregon Ducks vs Wisconsin Badgers
Jan. 2, 2012 | 5 p.m. ET | ESPN
Stadium Guide: Rose Bowl
Year Opened: 1917 | Field Surface: Artificial Turf
As one walks about campus grounds or when tailgating at your team's stadium those early Saturday mornings, it's hard not to feel the tradition and history that connects the past and present. Camp Randall is one of those places of a certain mystique that transcends time and captures fans the moment they step upon the grounds.
Ranked among the nation's largest school-owned stadiums, Camp Randall Stadium seats more than 80,000 red-adorned fans. (Unofficially wearing deer-hunting orange could be an acceptable clothing option depending on the month in which the game is played.)
UW drew a single-game attendance record of 83,069 on Nov. 6, 1972, against its long-standing rival Minnesota. This should not surprise the most avid Badgers fan as the 117 games in the series dates to 1890 and remains the longest active Division I-A rivalry.
The grounds of the stadium originally were used for early state fairs and a racetrack. When the Civil War broke out in 1861 the state's Agricultural Society offered the property to the state to be used as a training center for troops. The camp was aptly named for Alexander W. Randall, the state's first wartime governor.
By May 1, 1861, troops began moving in and 70,000 of the state's 91,327 troops would receive training at Camp Randall. Sick and wounded Confederate soldiers were held at Camp Randall. Some of these soldiers died due to complications with their wounds or health and are buried in an area known as "Soldier's Rest" cemetery on the west side of Madison, making it the northernmost Confederate cemetery in the country.
The land eventually was returned to the state and was commissioned to be used for so-called "business buildings." But an outcry from veterans of the war forced the state's hand and officials ultimately turned it over to the university in 1893 with the understanding it would be used for a memorial athletic field and forever carry the name Camp Randall.
The Camp Randall that is seen today was built in 1917. The facility was first used on its present site in 1913. Plans to install concrete stands were drawn up after temporary wooden bleachers collapsed during a game in 1915. The opening tilt in the new stadium took place Oct. 6, 1917, and Wisconsin beat Beloit; it was officially dedicated a month later, with a victory over none other than the Gophers of Minnesota.
During the third and fourth quarter of every home game "Jump Around" by House of Pain is played. This tradition started in 1998 during the Oct. 8 homecoming game against Purdue. The crowd apparently was dead, so a UW marketing guru thought the song would at least ignite the student section and breathe some life into the stadium. The hunch was correct and with the exception of a short time in 2003 during renovations the tune has fueled fans in the second half ever since.
Source: University of Wisconsin
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