Ann Arbor tops the list of the best college sports towns, based on “its excellent mix of livability and sports, Forbes says.
Ann Arbor as Sports City
Michigan Loves Sports & its Sports Teams!
Sports teams at Michigan and Michigan State are among the best in the country. Ann Arbor, the home of the University of Michigan, is just ahead of South Bend, Indiana, the home of Notre Dame.
Ann Arbor swells with fans from near and far on autumn game days as steady traffic pours into the city in search of parking venues, with busses and vans offering shuttles from hotels and high school parking lots. Locals enjoy the walk from nearby neighborhoods through streets strewn with fallen leaves, and all is ablaze with maize and blue. Destination, the Big House. Michigan Stadium, with official capacity at 107,600 and actual attendances topping 115,000, comes in as the largest sports stadium in the country and the third largest in the world.
Game Day in Ann Arbor holds many traditions, with tailgating at the University of Michigan golf course beginning at 7 am; numerous neighborhood tailgating parties; the tunnel entry of the University of Michigan Marching Band to the field for its stellar pregame shows with its hallmark high-step style; the jingle of keys before a “key” play; and of course the Wave, which is bigger in the Big House than anyplace you’ve seen it. The classic winged helmets of the Michigan Wolverines mark their tunnel entry onto the field and this symbol of Michigan pride has been adopted on headgear across Michigan Athletics, from hockey, baseball, softball, women’s rowing, field hockey, and swim teams.
Formed in 1879, the Michigan Wolverines became one of the founding football teams in the Western Conference that is now the Big Ten Conference. The Wolverines have the most Rose Bowl appearances of any college team after USC, and are tied second for most Rose Bowl wins. Michigan’s fight song “Hail to the Victors,” was performed by the famous John Philip Sousa Band in 1899. Considered a robust favorite among all college fight songs, “Hail to the Victors” still celebrates Michigan’s history and victories.
The state of Michigan adores its sports teams, and Detroit has the rare distinction of an American city with 4 major teams–the Lions, the Tigers, the Redwings, and the Pistons, whose game schedules all overlap with college football schedules. With Ann Arbor a close distance to Detroit, it’s easy to take in both a UM game and a Detroit game on the same weekend.
Downtown Detroit is home to three magnificent venues hosting 4 professional sports teams: Ford Field, home of the Detroit Lions football team, Comerica Park, home of the Detroit Tigers baseball team (American League Champions in 2006, 2012, 2013 & 2014). It is very close to pro teams for hockey (Detroit Red Wings), who have won the Stanley Cup in 1997, 1998, 2002, and 2007. And then how can we forget the Detroit Pistons basketball team in the NBA, winners of three NBA titles including the 2004 NBA Championship, and the MLB’s Detroit Tigers baseball team.
All the successful and legendary sports teams like the University of Michigan’s men’s college football and basketball programs, and UM’s women’s teams, who are perennial favorites within competitive Big Ten conference play contribute significantly to make Ann Arbor the fastest rising Sports hub in the U.S.
Michigan Stadium, also called the “The Big House” is on the University of Michigan campus. The 107,601-seat stadium, the largest in the United States and second-largest in the world, is home to the Wolverines football team and has hosted such marquee events as the 2014 NHL Winter Classic and International Champions Cup soccer games in 2014 and 2016.
Located about 25 minutes west of Detroit, the greater Ann Arbor area is home to two other college campuses, both with state-of-the-art athletic facilities — Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti and Concordia University in Ann Arbor — as well as high-profile ice rinks, golf courses, aquatic centers, recreation trails and even bowling alleys; Great for those who exercise regularly by themselves such as running, biking, hiking, etc.
Ann Arbor hosts a plethora of intramural, “pick up”, and league games and sports being played by many indoors and outdoors throughout the town and surrounding areas. Tennis courts, basketball courts, gyms, personal training facilities, biking groups and teams, public swimming pools, and other world-class sports facilities are abundant in the area for those looking for team play and occasional games.
Ann Arbor is known for its highly rated golf courses, both private and public, such as the Leslie Park Golf course and Huron Hills Golf Course. The award-winning Leslie Park Golf Course is a meticulous 18-hole, 6,611-yard golf championship course set on the rolling hills of northeast Ann Arbor. This premier golf course is continuously rated one of the best in Southeast Michigan.
Huron Hills Golf Course is a beautiful par 67, 18-hole, 5,071-yard golf course located along the Huron Parkway, adjacent to Gallup Park. Huron Hills is perfect for beginners, juniors, seniors, and families while still providing a challenge for the experienced golfer.
In the winter, skiing is not that far away as well in Ann Arbor, as residents can travel only a few miles north and find great Midwest skiing at mountains and resorts such as Kensington MetroPark, Rolling Hills Park, Lower Huron Metropark, and more.
Moreover, Michigan cross-country ski trails provide hours of outdoor excitement and fun throughout the winter.
Ann Arbor’s sports spirit is constantly rising higher, making itself one of the fastest rising sports avenues in the United States, producing an unmatched sports talent by offering world-class sports facilities and a range of competitive and globally recognized championships!
Ready for the sports adventure for yourself? Visit Ann Arbor! You may become yet another die-hard fan….