Tiger Stadium often referred to as Death Valley, originally opened in 1924 with a capacity of 12,000 and has since been renovated and expanded to a massive capacity of 102,231, making it the third largest stadium in the SEC. Tiger Stadium is unique in the fact that most games are played at night as opposed to during the day, and the Tigers have a better record under the lights than during afternoon games.
The atmosphere inside Death Valley is intimidating, exciting, and very, very loud. Many surveys have found that the home of the Tigers is one of the loudest and craziest stadiums in all of college football, most recently in 2013 when the NCAA declared Tiger Stadium as the loudest stadium in college football. Other surveys include being voted the most difficult place to play by multiple publications/associations (1987, 1989, 1995, 1998) and ESPN ranking Death Valley as the scariest place to play (2007).
It’s hard to put exactly how loud and crazy the fans are at LSU, but it is worth mentioning that they once caused an earthquake. On October 8th, 1988 the LSU-Auburn rivalry game was given the title of the earthquake game. Why do you ask? Auburn led 6-0 with two minutes left in the 4th quarter when LSU quarterback Tommy Hodson led the team down the field and threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to Eddie Fuller. LSU fans erupted into cheering and stomping their feet so loudly that the seismograph in LSU’s Howe-Russell Geoscience Complex registered it as an earthquake and securing the LSU fan base as one of the loudest in college football.
There are a couple unique and defining features of Tiger Stadium that make the stadium stand out among others in its conference, including “H” style goal posts and marking yard lines ending in “5” (most stadiums only mark the yard lines ending in “0”). Between a successful football program and some of the loudest fans in all of the SEC, game day at Tiger Stadium is an experience you will never forget.
Things to check out
Crossbar from Original Goalposts
The crossbar from the goalposts that stood inside Tiger Stadium has been mounted above the door which leads from the LSU locker room onto the playing field. The crossbar also has the word “Win!” painted on it to give the players some extra motivation.Watch video
Welcome to Death Valley
LSU wants their opponents to know exactly where they are and that is Death Valley, one of the loudest and most intimidating stadiums in all of college football. LSU wears this title proudly and has massive lettering inside the stadium proclaiming “Welcome to Death Valley.”Watch video
Mike the Tiger
Mike is the name of both the live and costumed versions of LSU’s official mascot. During home football games, Mike’s cage on wheels is positioned right outside the opponent’s locker room at the southeast end of the stadium, forcing the opposing team to run past him to access the field. Mike also rides through Tiger Stadium with the LSU cheerleaders before the game. When it is time for a new tiger to be found, LSU fans await the white smoke that will blow from the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine signifying a new mascot has been found.Watch video
First, Second, and Third Down Cheers
The first down cheer includes the “Hold That Tiger” musical phrase from Tiger Rag played by the LSU band and is followed by a “Geaux Tigers.” The second down cheer is a musical selection followed by the fans chanting “L-S-U!” and finally, the third down cheer is based on the song “Eye of the Tiger.”
Louisiana State University fans will also yell out “Tiger bait!” to fans from the opposing team.
Jersey Number 18
In 2003, LSU quarterback Matt Mauck guided the Tigers to a national championship, thus starting the tradition of his jersey number being synonymous with success. After his final season, Mauck passed on the jersey to running back Jacob Hester who also helped obtain a national championship in 2007. Taking into account athletic performance as well as good character and selfless attitude, the receiver of jersey number 18 is voted on each season.
A more recent tradition was started in 2012 in which the lights that illuminate the upper arches on the north end of the stadium light up in gold following an LSU victory.
One of the most unique things about the LSU Tigers is their white home jerseys, as most NCAA teams will wear their darker color jersey for home games. The tradition started in 1958 when Coach Paul Dietzal decided the Tigers would wear white at home and ended up winning a national championship that year. Due to rule changes in the NCAA, the only time LSU currently wear their white jerseys is for the home opener and home games against their SEC opponents.
Where stately oaks and broad magnolias
shade inspiring halls,
There stands our dear Old Alma Mater
who to us recalls
Fond memories that waken in our hearts
a tender glow, And make us happy for the love that we have learned to know. All hail to thee our Alma Mater,
molder of mankind,
May greater glory, love unending
be forever thine. Our worth in life will be thy worth we pray to keep it true,
And may thy spirit live in us, forever L-S-U.
Fight For LSU
(MAIN VERSE) Like Knights of old, Let’s fight to hold
The glory of the Purple Gold.
Let’s carry through, Let’s die or do
To win the game for dear old LSU. Keep trying for that high score; Come on and fight,
We want some more, some more.
Come on you Tigers, Fight! Fight! Fight!
for dear old L-S-U.
(Repeat “MAIN” Verse) We are the strongest,
We are the bravest
Football team in history.
Here’s to the honor, Here’s to the glory Marching on to victory.
Cheer for the Tigers! Cheer for the Tigers! Tigers! Fight! Fight! Fight!
(Repeat “MAIN” Verse Again)
Tigers! Tigers! They’ve come to town,
They fight! They fight! Call a first down,
Just look them over, and how they can go,
Smashing the line with runs and passes
high and low. Touchdown! Touchdown! It’s Tigers’ score. Give them hell and a little bit more.
Come on you Tigers, Fight them, you Tigers, Touchdown for LSU.
Hey Fightin' Tigers
Hey, Fightin’ Tigers, Fight all the way
Tigers, win the game today. You’ve got the know how,
you’re doing fine, Hang on to the ball as you hit the wall
And smash right through the line You’ve got to go for a touchdown Run up the score. Make Mike the Tiger stand right up and roar. (YELL) ROAR! Give it all of your might as you fight tonight
and keep the goal in view.
Victory for L-S-U!
Long ago, way down in the jungle
Someone got an inspiration for a tune,
And that jingle brought from the jungle
Became famous mighty soon. Thrills and chills it sends thru you! Hot! so hot, it burns you too! Tho’ it’s just the growl of the tiger It was written in a syncopated way,
More and more they howl for the ‘Tiger’
Ev’ry where you go today
They’re shoutin’ Where’s that Tiger! Where’s that Tiger! Where’s that Tiger! Where’s that Tiger!
Hold that Tiger! Hold that Tiger! Hold that Tiger! (YELL LOUDLY)