Gridiron Season Launches Football Fanaticism at North Atlanta


Sara Beth Cimowsky

Lesley Laws (10), Cameron Tyler (12), Josh Johnston (12) and Luke Martin (12) show their favorite, or least favorite, schools to cheer for in college fall football games.

The college football season is in full swing and that means another season fun of tailgates and upsets. And the same football fever that infects all corners of our country of course has the same potent effect on the students who inhabit North Atlanta High School. Ask around our 11 stories and you’ll get a whole wide range of favorite teams and heightened excitement as the new college football season is upon us.

Football seems to be a family affair and students tend to show allegiances toward schools where family members – either parents of siblings – attended. Since her earliest days in her crib, sophomore Grace Hackett has had a deep affiliation with the Georgia Bulldogs. Her father, uncle and grandfather all attended UGA and their connections have transferred to her. “I’ve grown up loving the university,” she said. “My family definitely has had an influence on me, but I’ve also picked it up on my own.”

For many students, the football season is marked by road trips to visit family members who attend colleges. Ashley Rativa’s father lives in Miami so she goes to every home game of the University of Miami Hurricanes. “It’s fun because sometimes you see celebrities, like Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson,” she said.

No college football game experience is complete without a fun tailgating session and for some North Atlanta the pre-game fun is the best part of the weekend. Several times during the season senior Luke Martin makes his way to Athens to see his beloved Bulldogs. “I go to most home games and tailgate or go to frat houses where I know someone,” he said.

Among games this season, no game was more anticipated than the Oct. 3 Georgia-Alabama game where the Crimson Tide convincingly beat the Bulldogs. Sophomore Rieley Martin was among the tens of thousands of Bulldog faithful who packed Sanford Stadium. “My sister goes to Georgia but I’m a big Alabama fan so it was definitely interesting,” she said.

With the season in full swing, many fans are now making predictions about who will make it to the College Football Playoff. Freshman Nick Gaitan, a huge University of Miami fan, said he expects his team will win eight games. Freshman Jade Gooden, a proud University of Alabama fan went out on a limb and boldly predicted that the Crimson Tide will secure yet another national championship.

No matter whether your team is bound for collegiate playoff glory or fated to endure a succession of Saturday fiascos and an accompanying losing record, all college football fans can agree that life is better when pigskin time is here.