College football and tailgating go together like peanut butter and jelly, but the College Football Playoff seems to have forgotten the intrinsic link between the two. Rather, it neglected to remember.
Tailgating at the College Football Playoff National Championship is not allowed, in any capacity, ever. That was made abundantly clear outside of SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles on Monday.
It just goes to show that there is a clear disconnect between college football fans and the people who are in charge of the product. There is no finger on the pulse of the sport.
That is intentional.
Parking lot tailgating in Inglewood is allowed prior to Chargers and Rams games. It is allowed before concerts and other events held at SoFi Stadium.
Not at the College Football Playoff National Championship.
Outside of the game, TCU and Georgia fans were invited to a tailgate that was hosted by the Playoff.
There, at the Playoff's official #ChampTailgate, fans were able to purchase food, drink, merchandise, and even ponchos— since it was raining in Los Angeles and nobody packs for rain in Los Angeles.
All of those things cost money. And based on the concession prices inside the stadium, all of those things likely weren't cheap.
Thus, the parking lot tailgate ban forces fans to spend more money at the #ChampTailgate. But between the cost and the weather, attendance was... sparse.
Meanwhile., Georgia and TCU fans got creative. They spent all day tailgating throughout the streets of Los Angeles (even though this specific photo is of the band).
Some of them set up their own (literal) tailgate directly across from SoFi Stadium.
One TCU fan group also set up a much bigger pregame party across from the game.
As did a big group of Georgia fans.
They even saved Kirby Smart a plate of food, just in case he needed some grub before kickoff.
The majority of fans, though, hit the bars.
Despite the Playoff's every effort to get fans to the #ChampTailgate, it wasn't going to stop college football fans from getting their tailgate on. It's part of the game. It's part of the pagentry.
Banning tailgating is laaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaame!