As much as college football is about winning, school pride, and rivalries, it’s also about the party. Every fall Saturday in college towns across the country, students, alumni, and fans flock to the bar to celebrate a win or forget a loss. And what people are drinking largely depends on where you are.
Upserve, a restaurant management platform, gathered data from thousands of restaurants in the US to see which beer is the most popular in big college football towns. Some of the beers are predictable: Bud Light was the top-selling beer overall and has an especially strong presence in towns with a Big 10 and SEC school. Bud Light is also in the top five for almost 40 percent of all the college towns Upserve has data for. Conferences on the coasts tended to get more crafty, though.
Granted, Upserve only has access to data from the restaurants and bars that use the platform and its point of sale system, Breadcrumb. The businesses that use Upserve likely have similar clientele and similar beer suppliers, which explains some of the seemingly obscure out-of-town beers that are popular. But regardless of the limitations, Upserve has a lot of data worth paying attention to. Upserve facilitates more than $11 billion a year in sales for restaurants and bars, and 23 million meals per month are processed through the system.
So, while not perfect, you might blend in a little more at college town bars if you order these beers.
Note: Only teams that Upserve had data for are represented on this list.
Georgia Tech in Atlanta: Saranac Brewery IPA
University of Pittsburgh: Miller Lite
University of Louisville: Pabst Blue Ribbon
Florida State University in Tallahassee: 3 Daughters Brewing St. Pete Beach Blonde Ale
American Athletic Conference
Temple University in Philadelphia: Allagash Saison
University of Cincinnati: Miller High Life
Ohio State University in Columbus: Rogue 8 Hop IPA
University of Minnesota in Minneapolis: Coors Light
University of Michigan in Ann Arbor: Bell’s Brewery Two Hearted Ale
University of Nebraska in Lincoln: Rogue 8 Hop IPA
University of Wisconsin in Madison: Miller Lite
Penn State in State College: Grey Sail Pour Judgement IPA
University of Iowa in Iowa City: Bud Light
University of Texas in Austin: Bull & Bush Brewery Man Beer
Texas Tech in Lubbock: Thomas Creek Up the Creek
University of Oklahoma in Norman: Union Craft Brewing Company Anthem Golden Ale
Texas Christian University in Fort Worth: Coors Light
University of Washington in Seattle: Rainier Beer
University of Colorado in Boulder: Grey Sail Pour Judgement IPA
University of Oregon in Eugene: Guinness
University of California, Berkeley: Miller High Life
University of Arizona in Tucson: Modelo Especial
Arizona State University in Tempe: Dragoon Brewing Company Dragoon IPA
University of Tennessee in Knoxville: Bud Light
University of Georgia in Athens: Guinness
Texas A&M University in College Station: Cycle Brewing Rare DOS
University of Florida in Gainesville: Corona Light
University of Missouri in Columbia: Saranac Brewery IPA
University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa: Guinness
University of Arkansas in Fayetteville: Capital Brewing Co. Trail Pale Ale
University of Notre Dame in Notre Dame, Indiana: Miller Lite
Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah: Bud Light