The Georgia-Alabama watch party at Sports & Social and Todd English Tavern in The Battery Atlanta is one of the hottest tickets outside of Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
“UGA! UGA! UGA!,” the crowd chanted when the team came out on the field.
Alabama, not surprisingly, got booed.
Still, many expect a good game.
“I want the Dawgs to win,” said Jessi Fawley, president of the Metro Atlanta Alumni chapter, which has about 95,000 members.
“I think we have a good shot because in a defensive slugfest, you need more good running backs,” said Fawley, a 2011 UGA graduate.
The game doesn’t start until 8 p.m., but people started arriving at the popular spot at noon, said Joanna Ferrara, marketing manager of Sports and Social.
Sports and Social partnered with the metro Atlanta UGA alumni chapter for the big game watch party.
Some people were lucky -- and fast -- enough to nab a reserved seat, which costs $75 in advance and was sold out days ahead of the game. The $75 covered the cost of food and beverage. The rest, and it didn’t seem to matter, were able to stand on the upper and lower levels.
It’s fair to say Dawg fans were in the clear majority, although at least one man was brave enough to wear an Alabama T-shirt.
Thirty minutes before game time, a line of about 60 people formed outside.
Buddy Tesar, a 2008 UGA graduate, arrived at 3:30 p.m.
“I was here for the Rose Bowl and it was an awesome experience,” said Tesar, who works in public finance. “I’m hoping for the same ‘w,’”meaning win.
Members of the UGA alumni association chapters paid $40. Sports & Social has a capacity of about 700 people and “we’re going to hit capacity,” Ferrara said.
George Pumphrey, general manager of Todd English Tavern, expected a big crowd as well. “People have been calling all day,” he said.