Ahhh, do you hear that? The roar of the student section. The bellow of the brass. Johnny puking into the cupholder of his Camry in the parking lot. Yep, college football season is upon us once again, and to celebrate the best audio-visual spectacle in sports, The Loop is thrilled to present the first-ever College Football Fight Song Playoff. Teeming with volatile band geek hormones, can’t-miss half-time bonanzas, and the highest concentration of tuba solos this side of a Frank Zappa acid trip, the CFFSP is the perfect way to kick off another insane autumn of shouting at other people’s kids from the anonymity of your own basement. So tune up, throw on one of those goofy pom-pom hats, and get ready, because, in the immortal words of Joe Starkey, THE BAND IS ON THE FIELD!
FIRST FOUR OUT:
Navy – “Anchors Aweigh”
While we shouldn’t underestimate the uniquely American tradition of watching bright-eyed service academy cadets enjoy a riveting game of football before shipping off to the slaughter, “Anchors Aweigh” comes up just short in its inaugural playoff push. Navy’s seafaring shanty is sure to be perennial contender, however, rallying fans from the halls of Montezuma to the shores of Tripoli and beyond.
Ohio State – “Battle Cry”
Buckeye nation must heartbroken to see their cherished diddy so narrowly miss out, but even the Best Damn Band in the Land couldn't manage to navigate the fight song gauntlet that is the Big Ten unscathed. Strength of schedule proponents will have their objections, but the committee feels this decision is consistent with its other inconsistencies.
Tennessee – “Rocky Top”
This iconic Appalachian standard gets docked a playoff berth for one simple reason: While it’s unquestionably the most revered fight song in the Volunteers can(n)on, it is not the official anthem—a title that instead belongs to the inferior “Down the Field”. When the competition is this fierce, semantics matter. Unless you’re Boise State. Then you’re just always f—ked.
Boston College – “For Boston”
The only fight song in America covered by the Dropkick Murphys. The committee does not believe this to be an asset.
The NPR Jazz24 Bowl
#4 Florida State’s “War Chant” vs. #1 Michigan’s “The Victors”
David vs. Goliath. The walk-on vs. the blue chipper. Florida State’s “War Chant”—one of the most unique stadium staples this side of “Rock Chalk Jayhawk"—vs. Michigan’s “The Victors”—the fight song by which all other fight songs are judged. Shockingly “The Victors” falls in an overtime thriller, leaving the Wolverine faithful with nothing to do but tweet “well at least we made it and Ohio State didn’t” through their slobbery maize and blue tears.
The Sirius XM Boneyard Bowl
#3 USC’s “Fight On” vs. #2 Notre Dame’s “Victory March”
After the heart-palpitating NPR Jazz24 Bowl, there was only one question heading into this one: Could that instant classic be topped? The answer, as it turns out, is no. Despite the sky-high expectations, the triumphant, Rudy-ready “Victory March” wipes the turf with La La Land B-side “Fight On” as the shell-shocked Trojan army watches on.
The Spotify Premium National Championship Game
#4 Florida State’s “War Chant” vs. #2 Notre Dame’s “Victory March”
Now for the moment you’ve all be waiting for (no, the Dr. Pepper guy didn’t die): THE COLLEGE FOOTBALL FIGHT SONG SPOTIFY PREMIUM NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME! After losing their starting oboe player on the opening trill, Notre Dame’s “Victory March” hangs tough, pushing a red-hot Florida State marching band to the brink, only to come up short on 4/4 and goal from measure six in the waning moments. From there, the Seminoles run out the CODA, etching their name into the inaugural College Football Fight Song trophy in the process.