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Wayne Cavadi | NCAA.com | October 15, 2019

DII football: The best stadiums, according to the fans

DII Football plays of the week

College football, at every level, is fun to watch. It's even more fun when you are caught up in the action inside the best DII football stadiums in the land.

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Whether it was built on a scenic backdrop or is packed with thousands upon thousands of fans every Saturday, we asked our DII football faithful to let us know which are the top stadiums in the division. 

We have taken a look at some of the best football stadiums DII has to offer in the past with our own Bucket List and scenic stadium tour. Now we left it up to you, the fans, to chime in and decide which are the best of the best. After tallying the responses, here are the 9 fan-favorite stadiums in DII football.

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The best DII football stadiums: The Big 4

No school's stadiums got more mentions than these four:

Blue Wahoos Stadium, West Florida

Twitter | Kaleb Nobles, West Florida West Florida's Blue Wahoos Stadium.

The Argos share their stadium with the Pensacola Blue Wahoos, now a part of the Minnesota Twins organization. Aside from getting a glimpse of one of the premier Double-A stadiums in minor league baseball, this venue sits on Pensacola Bay. If the palm trees and water aren't enough of a view during an October Gulf South Conference football showdown, don't be surprised if you see a boat or two sail by in the distance.  

Buffalo Stadium | Kimbrough Memorial Stadium, West Texas A&M

Twitter West Texas A&M's Buffalo Stadium.

Old and new were the two words most heard in the comments when mentioning the home stadium of the West Texas A&M Buffs. The old is Kimbrough Memorial Stadium, once the largest stadium in DII football that housed 20,000 football-crazed fans every Saturday, drawing an absurd 22,993 fans for a matchup with rival Eastern New Mexico in 2005. The new Buffalo Stadium (shown above via the Twitter page of Jessie Joseph) has downsized, "only" seating 12,000 with room for expansion to another couple thousand, but offers chairback, Buffalo Club, family box and premium suite seating as well as up-to-date amenities like a new video scoreboard. 

Cliff Harris Stadium, Ouachita Baptist

Ouachita Baptist Athletics Ouachita Baptist's Cliff Harris Stadium.

Catch a game at Benson-Williams Field inside Cliff Harris Stadium and there's a chance you'll see some top 25 action. After all, the Tigers have been to the DII football tournament in each of the past two seasons. Be sure to take a peek over at Carpenter-Haygood Stadium across the street at Henderson State. The two stadiums share one of the most unique rivalries in college football history, and certainly the closest.

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Lubbers Stadium, Grand Valley State

Grand Valley St. Athletics Lubbers Stadium at Grand Valley State.
Lubbers Stadium opened its doors in 1979. Since then, the Lakers have gone 192-39-1 with GLIAC-record amounts of fans rooting on four national champions, two national runners-up and a 40-game winning streak from 2005 to 2007 — the longest in DII history. This football-only stadium (a rarity at the DII level) has gotten plenty of facelifts over the years — the addition of its massive video screen amongst the most recent — and continues to bring in fans. A 2016 showdown with Ferris State saw 16,889 fans, the most in the stadium's history.

The best DII football stadiums: The next tier

Let's take a look at the schools that got multiple mentions on Twitter and Facebook.

Bearcat Stadium, Northwest Missouri State

Northwest Missouri State Athletics Bearcat Stadium at Northwest Missouri State.

When your program owns the most national championships in DII football history, you're sure to draw a raucous crowd every Saturday.

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Helen and Leonard Moretz Stadium, Lenoir-Rhyne

Lenoir-Rhyne Athletics Moretz Stadium at Lenoir-Rhyne.

The Bears have become a consistent DII football power lately, and that has filled plenty in "between the bricks" on Saturdays in Hickory, North Carolina. 

Memorial Stadium, Tarleton State

Tarleton State Athletics Tarleton Memorial Stadium in Texas.

This is the last season the Texans' home gridiron will be mentioned, as they prepare to a jump to the FCS. That said, Tarleton fans haven't seen a loss here since Nov. 11, 2017, which keeps them coming back in bunches. 

Mihalik-Thompson Stadium, Slippery Rock

Slippery Rock Athletics Slippery Rock's football stadium.

From Milly Raye's ESPN Plays of the Week catches to Roland Rivers III charge at the Harlon Hill Award, one thing fans know they'll get at a Slippery Rock football game is some exciting offensive highlights.

Younts Stadium, North Greenville

North Greenville Athletics Younts Stadium at North Greenville.

Though the home of the Crusaders is just a few years removed from hosting DII football tournament games, the record for attendance was set in 2016 when The Citadel borrowed their field in Tigerville. 

Honorable mentions: 

The following schools received one mention in our week-long poll.

  • Bloomsburg
  • Colorado School of Mines: Marv Kay Field
  • Emporia State
  • Lindenwood
  • Minnesota State
  • Southern Arkansas
  • Valdosta State
  • Winona State

For your consideration:

NCAA.com McKinney ISD Stadium will host the DII football championship until 2021.

It's tough to put McKinney Independent School District Stadium on this list with some notable ones — Pittsburg State's Jungle and CSU-Pueblo's ThunderBowl come to mind — not mentioned. But the McKinney, Texas stadium made its DII football debut in 2018 as host to the DII football championship title game, and it was one of historic proportions. 

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Last season, Valdosta State and Ferris State fans filled this monster of a venue and were treated to one of the best DII football championships in history. Rogan Wells led the Blazers to a 49-47 victory that was decided in the final seconds. If that's a sign of things to come in Texas, McKinney Stadium will become a fan-favorite desitination every December.

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