From the beginning of sports, there have been disputes on whether the NCAA or NFL is more entertaining. Fans from both levels of sport have expressed their opinions and argue that their favorite of the two comes out on top.
One aspect that differentiates the two is the fans. The NCAA has crazy shirtless teenagers with their chests painted the team colors and logos, and they chant in unison on one side of the stadium; the other side waits to chant back an answer. They pack into stadiums like a public pool on a hot day, and in some cases can cause small towns to become the most populated town in the state on game day. They scream that their team is number one all game despite the fact they have yet to make the Top 25. Plus, NCAA has almost four times as many teams as the NFL. There never are 100,000 fans packed in for an NFL game like college. Also, people like the atmosphere and, “prefer college football over the NFL just because of the atmosphere and crazy students,” junior Carli Mangum said.
On the other hand, the NFL has crazed, enthusiastic fans who can feel a sense of interest in their teams. They take pride in having their own idea of how personal decisions made their journey to liking a specific team. In addition, they dominate the apparel industry as players names are allowed to be on jerseys. “[Being able to have], players’ names on the back of jerseys is what I like to buy. I definitely support the NFL being better than college,” sophomore Haley Scheinberg said.
Another aspect to take into account is the players. The NCAA has blue chip prospects and five star recruits; some of the best athletes in the country fight to win every week. All they have is National Signing Day, and college visits. Also, they are only there for a handful of years and don’t have the best players.
The NFL has the best players. A team can have a star player for 10-15 years to thrive on, or sometimes can bring in a player from a team rooted against for years. They have the draft, free agency and trades, unlimited opportunity to obtain the best. The salary cap also adds a competitive edge to the league creating negative effects like lockouts/holdouts from players. “The players in the NFL are probably more entertaining to watch. But that’s just because they are the best of the best,” senior Nahshon Plummer said.
The final aspect that makes the two extremely different is rivalries. The NFL has the Washington Redskins vs. the Dallas Cowboys, the Pittsburgh Steelers vs. the Cleveland Browns and the Green Bay Packers vs. the Chicago Bears. These rivalries have brought out some of the best in multiple hall-of-famers over the years, and are some of the best football to watch.
For NCAA football teams, a loss to a rival will sting harder when the opponent resides in state. Most college rivals are within miles of each other making it harder on the losing fans. The NCAA has rivalries like Alabama–Auburn, USC-Notre Dame, Oklahoma-Texas and Miami-Florida State. These fights to the death are rich in tradition and sprinkled with stories of the higher ranked team suffering the upset loss to its rival. The rivalries in college football, “are my favorite between the two. Nothing is better than a classic rivalry game on Saturdays,” freshman Kyler Hamlin said.
The two levels of sport are very different. People have their own opinions and beliefs about which is better between the two. There is yet to be a definitive answer spurring from the cloud of arguments.