Photo courtesy of Alabama athletics

Welcome back to the 10th of 13 installments where we rank all 130 FBS fight songs!

BACKGROUND

Fight songs are one of, if not the, best parts of college athletics. Everyone knows their university’s fight song.

Each week, 10 teams will be covered, starting with No. 130, and ending with the No. 1 fight song. This is designed to carry fans past the midway point of the darkness that is the FBS offseason.

This is perhaps the most subjective ranking list you’ll read all offseason. Any and all feedback can be directed to @CJOlson2000 on Twitter — whether it be positive or negative. But also remember that this is one man’s opinions on fight songs.

Also, even the worst fight songs are still enjoyable; they just are worse than their counterparts.

This took close to eight hours to complete, and that’s before turning it into 13 weekly articles. If someone is upset and feels so inclined, they’re welcome to listen and then grade all 130 FBS fight songs. It could be made into a weekly activity that’s updated as articles are published.

Lastly, there’s a possibility that the wrong song was used. If the wrong song was considered for a team and it negatively impacted their ranking, we are very sorry.

CRITERIA CONSIDERED

There were three factors considered for each team’s fight song.

1. FLOW

Did the song flow from beginning to end in a smooth way? This was given a weight of 25%.

The average flow score was 6.7016.

2. CROWD FACTOR

Is the crowd getting into it? Fight songs are designed to engage the crowd and get the crowd going, because this is the purpose of a fight song; this was given a 50% weight.

The average crowd factor score was 6.7137.

3. NOSTALGIA/FEEL-GOOD FACTOR

How much does this trigger the nostalgia of someone who put thousands of hours into NCAA football video games back when they had fight songs in the main menu?

Some teams newer to FBS do have a little bit of a disadvantage here. To make up for that, there is also a ‘feel-good factor’ incorporated. Fight songs should give listeners a great feeling, hence the reason for this category.

It’s fairly self-explanatory, but also the most subjective of the categories. This was given a 25% weight.

The average nostalgia/feel-good score was 6.8189.

The average overall score was 6.7370.

As a disclaimer, this final category was where biases shone through the most. For the first two categories, an attempt to be as unbiased as possible was made.

To avoid ties as best as possible, each factor’s score is given to four decimal places. Even with that, there was coincidentally two ties.

AUTHOR’S NOTE: Lyrics and vocals were not considered unless it dominates the song and is what is predominantly coming across for a brief section. To remain uniform across the board, vocals and lyrics were only considered for these brief sections instead of for the full song.

PREVIOUS ARTICLES

Rankings Nos. 130-121

Rankings Nos. 120-111

Rankings Nos. 110-101

Rankings Nos. 100-91

Rankings Nos. 90-81

Rankings Nos. 80-71

Rankings Nos. 70-61

Rankings Nos. 60-51

Rankings Nos. 50-41

If you’re interested in reading the rankings revealed so far without going through individual articles, that can found here.

Let’s get back to the rankings!

40. Vanderbilt

Flow Crowd Factor Nostalgia/Feel Good Overall
Rating 7.7343 6.9565 7.9953 7.4107
Rank (Conf.) 33/130 (7/14) 60/130 (12/14) 34/130 (8/14) 40/130 (10/14)

If only Vanderbilt would score more, because it has a great fight song.

The Commodores definitely get points for only choosing to spell “Vandy” instead of spelling out “Vanderbilt”.

It doesn’t rank too high on the ‘will a spectator hum it on the way home?’ scale, partially because of the lack of scoring that Vanderbilt does, but also because it’s a little basic. That critique however, is really nitpicking, because Vanderbilt has an otherwise great fight song.

39. Utah State

Flow Crowd Factor Nostalgia/Feel Good Overall
Rating 6.8459 7.5535 7.9318 7.4712
Rank (Conf.) 66/130 (5/12) 33/130 (2/12) 38/130 (2/12) 39/130 (3/12)

Tune is great. The song itself flows well, but the cymbals feel out of place at time.

This probably plays well with the Aggie crowd, so credit it for that. If they could just sort out those cymbals, this jumps 15 to 20 spots.

38. New Mexico

Flow Crowd Factor Nostalgia/Feel Good Overall
Rating 7.7513 7.2131 7.8419 7.5049
Rank (Conf.) 32/130 (2/12) 43/130 (4/12) 40/130 (3/12) 38/130 (14/12)

Incredible nostalgia vibes the whole way through. There’s not a whole lot that needs to be adjusted.

It’s the same thing twice, but in a good way. Great job on New Mexico’s part for creating an all-around B+/A- fight song.

37. Alabama

Flow Crowd Factor Nostalgia/Feel Good Overall
Rating 7.1473 7.5531 8.0090 7.5656
Rank (Conf.) 50/130 (12/14) 34/130 (9/14) 32/130 (7/14) 37/130 (9/14)

Alabama has a strong fight song that is definitely benefitting from the fact that the Crimson Tide are at the top of the sport.

Spending the first 40% building up to the good part is too much time wasted. There’s a strange discordance that gives it a feeling of just being a touch off for the first half of the good part. The ending is great.

Overall, it’s good, but it’s not top of the top. There’s plenty of room for improvement, though.

Finally, lyrics and titles are not taken into consideration, but “Yea Alabama” as a title always gets me to crack a smile and audibly exhale. Not entirely sure why, but it always will.

36. Virginia Tech

Flow Crowd Factor Nostalgia/Feel Good Overall
Rating 7.9954 7.0389 8.2157 7.5722
Rank (Conf.) 24/130 (3/14) 51/130 (8/14) 29/130 (4/14) 36/130 (4/14)

Talk about nostalgia. Not only that, but it also flows very well.

This one has the right amount of “upbeat-ness”. There is something that’s missing a little that would elevate it into the next tier of songs, but it’s hard to place exactly what it is.

The song peters out at the end which hurts the crowd factor a bit, since finishing strong is important. Finish a little stronger and Virginia Tech could comfortably be in that 12- to 17-range.

35. Indiana

Flow Crowd Factor Nostalgia/Feel Good Overall
Rating 7.9832 7.2475 7.9441 7.6056
Rank (Conf.) 26/130 (4/14) 40/130 (8/14) 37/130 (7/14) 35/130 (8/14)

A little repetitive, and not in the good way like New Mexico.

It ends strong, which was just mentioned as something that can really separate the good songs from the greats.

Doesn’t really do anything great, but also makes no major mistakes.

If this weren’t Indiana’s fight song, and it was a generic fight song for a created team on NCAA Football, no one would be surprised.

34. Minnesota

Flow Crowd Factor Nostalgia/Feel Good Overall
Rating 7.4314 7.8451 7.5781 7.6749
Rank (Conf.) 39/130 (6/14) 27/130 (5/14) 44/130 (8/14) 34/130 (7/14)

Great first 40 seconds, and the repetitiveness works for it.

Where the Golden Gophers blow it is having nine letters’ worth of spelling. By now, it’s pretty clear our stance on spelling – keep it to eight letters or less.

Other than that, it’s a great above-average song that seems like it would really engage a crowd.

33. Rutgers

Flow Crowd Factor Nostalgia/Feel Good Overall
Rating 7.1885 6.7751 9.9999 7.6847
Rank (Conf.) 48/130 (9/14) 68/130 (13/14) 1/130 (1/14) 33/130 (6/14)

Just a reminder:

“As a disclaimer, this final category [nostalgia/feel good factor] was where biases shone through the most. For the first two categories, an attempt to be as unbiased as possible was made.” – the introduction of every fight song ranking article.

That reminder is given because this is by far the most biased ranking in the entire list. I’ve been to about 100 Rutgers home games in my life, so I’ve seen consecutive 50-plus-point losses and cheered at the initial first down of the game coming in the fourth quarter. I’ve also seen the Scarlet Knights beat teams ranked No. 3 or better in consecutive seasons.

I knew this fight song by heart before kindergarten, so it’s hard to not rate nostalgia anything other than perfect. It’s a large part of the experience that has led to college football being my favorite sport and one of my biggest passions. Without Rutgers football, the passion to even create these rankings may not even exist.

With all of that being said, back to trying to be objective. As for the song itself, it flows a little better than average. The crowd factor could benefit from it either being shorter or it varying pitch a little more. It does drone on a little after the chant but before the final 15 seconds, so shortening the song would’ve been of benefit.

32. Texas Tech

Flow Crowd Factor Nostalgia/Feel Good Overall
Rating 7.7715 8.1044 6.8835 7.7160
Rank (Conf.) 30/130 (5/10) 17/130 (3/10) 64/130 (6/14) 32/130 (4/14)

Pretty good tune. It almost doesn’t feel like the type of fight song that would emerge from a place like Lubbock, Tex.

Really appreciate the flow of the song, and it’s also very likely that the crowd at Texas Tech loves it as well. It’s a little lacking on nostalgia, probably because it doesn’t scream “Texas Tech.” Otherwise, it’s a great song.

31. South Carolina

Flow Crowd Factor Nostalgia/Feel Good Overall
Rating 7.7903 8.1014 6.8735 7.7167
Rank (Conf.) 29/130 (6/14) 18/130 (5/14) 67/130 (12/14) 31/130 (8/14)

Let’s just address the elephant — not Alabama’s mascot — in the song. Crowd factor likely benefits from the lone chant being, “go Cocks.” Sophomoric? Maybe a little. However, it is the mascot, after all. But objectively speaking, that’s going to engage a crowd, specifically the student section, a lot.

As for the rest of the song, there is no nostalgia feeling from this song. It flows well, but it doesn’t land as a ‘classic college football fight song’ like all of the rest ranked higher than it do.

STILL TO COME: THE TOP 30!

Only 129 more days until FBS college football returns, football fans. Hang tough and see everyone each Wednesday morning as we near the end of our fight song rankings.