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LSU’s Death Valley: Roaring Tiger, shaking stadium

Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge, Louisiana — aka Death Valley. LSU coach Les Miles once called it after a big victory the place where opponents’ “dreams go to die.”

The place holds more than 102,000 fans. On Saturday nights in the fall — night games are when Tiger Stadium is most rowdy and raucous — there is no louder football stadium in America. Back in the 1980s, a late game-winning touchdown by LSU set off a celebration so deafening that it registered as an earthquake at the Louisiana Geological Survey not far from the Stadium. And that was back when capacity was only about 79,000.

Ahead of the 2014 college football season, the AP asked its panel of Top 25 voters, who are known for ranking the nation’s top teams each week, to weigh in on which stadium had the best game-day atmosphere.

Notre Dame Stadium, with its Touchdown Jesus, looming over one end zone, and Texas A&M’s Kyle Field also received recognition from the panel. So did Ohio State’s Horseshoe and Auburn’s Jordan-Hare. But the home of a live Tiger named Mike, who sits in his cage on the field before games, right in front of the tunnel to the visitor’s locker room so opposing players must move past him to warmup, was the runaway No. 1 in these rankings.

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