Pageantry, Wackiness at Ultimate BCS Championship Tailgate Party

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Article and Photography by RACHEL YOUNG

4:34 pm | January 6, 2014


With banners flying overhead and blue and orange flooding the streets of Pasadena, Auburn Tigers fans and Florida State Seminoles fans flooded Pasadena yesterday in colorful waves before the last-ever Bowl Championship Series game at the Rose Bowl. Florida State was to win, but before the game both camps were on emotional highs.

Spirited orange and blue decked Tiger fans with their boots on wore wigs, crazy hats, homemade outfits and even a blow-up suit to cheer on Auburn state with the cry “War Eagle… Hey!” In a sweet southern accent one fan said, “Ya’ll there’s a lot of people here.”

The hustle and bustle of the pre-game tailgate parties brought fans from Florida, Alabama and even a group from Indiana to root on their favorite team in the last title game before the Bowl Championship Series is replaced by a playoff next year.

“This is a trip of a lifetime. We are loving Pasadena and California because its 7 degrees back home. And I’m glad we can close out the BCS with us. I love it. I am glad they’re changing things around, but I’m glad it gets to end with us. I think the top two teams made it and that’s what’s important. Were having a blast,” Mona Adams of McCalla, Alabama home of Bo Jackson.

Adams said the playoffs will be a better system that should have been implemented in the first place.

“If the NFL can do it, then college football should do it too,” Adams said.

The 80-degree day left the paramedic teams on high alert, expecting more medical calls because of the heat.

“People need to make sure they hydrate properly with water and take into consideration pre-existing medical conditions,” Pasadena Fire representative Lisa Derderian said.

With the extreme fire danger being issued in southern California in one of the driest seasons in history, Derderian said they would be watching the bbq cookout’s closely. The department issued special teams in golf carts and on bicycles to more easily navigate the crowd in case of a medical emergency or fire hazard.

One Auburn fan said, “For the past two days it’s been all orange and blue.”

However a several dedicated Seminole and Tiger fans drove in RV’s across the country including Ryan McDonald and his friends who started on New Year’s Eve, drove through Dallas, the Grand Canyon, Las Vegas and Joshua Tree National Park, and ended with a tailgate party before the game by their RV he named SS Winston.

“It’s the last BCS game. We could be eternal champions,” McDonald said who will cheer on Florida State at the game.

For those who may have missed the excitement of the game and fans, Tuesday the Rose Bowl Stadium will host Rally Day to celebrate the champions of Monday’s game. Every attendee will receive part of the BCS game field. The event will be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Find more information at http://www.rosebowlstadium.com/events/detail/rose-bowl-rally-day