Homecoming Traditions

If you are visiting The Swamp for Homecoming, you are definitely in for an exciting and fun time! To prepare for your time in Gainesville, we pulled together everything you need to know about some of the most famous Gator traditions and characters, including the Gator Chomp, Mr. Two Bits and our Alma Mater all in one place.

The Swamp

Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, where our Gator football team takes on its rivals, is Florida’s largest stadium and has repeatedly been ranked as the toughest environment for a visiting team to play in. Between the Florida temperatures and humidity, and a stadium full of Gator fans, cheering so loud that they reach decibels that rival that of the loudest NFL stadiums, rival teams have to work extra hard in each game. The stadium is also more commonly known as “The Swamp.” The nickname was given by former Heisman trophy winning Gator quarterback and head football coach Steve Spurrier, in a column in The Gainesville Sun in 1992. The name has stuck ever since.


How to Chomp

Perhaps the most iconic and recognized Gator tradition is the Gator Chomp, where you make an alligator’s chomping motion by extending your right arm over left and moving your arms up and down. The Gator Chomp has been named one of the Top 10 Traditions in College Football and is one of the most recognized fan gestures of college sports.


End of Third Quarter Song

Fans gather together in The Swamp and all over the world to watch the Gators play. No matter where Gator fans are, they are always welcomed to participate in our tradition at the end of the third quarter. In the stadium, over 90,000 fans stand, lock arms, sway and sing “We Are The Boys.”

We are the boys from old Florida,
Where the girls are the fairest,
The boys are the squarest …
Of any old state down our way.
We are all strong for old Florida
Down where the old Gators play.
In all kinds of weather …
We’ll all stick together for …


Mr. Two Bits

For over 60 years, George Edmondson was a long-time fan and unofficial cheerleader for the Florida Gators footbal team. In 1949, The Citadel was playing against the Gators in Gainesville, and the Gators were on a losing streak. Fans booed the team before they even had their opening kickoff and Edmondson decided to lead a cheer to help boost morale.

“Two-bits, Four-bits, Six-bits, a dollar. All for the Gators, Stand up and holler!”

The Gator went on to win the game and the fans loved the cheer so much that Edmondson returned again and again to lead the cheer until his retirement from Mr. Two Bits in 2008. Since then, UF began a series of honorary Mr. Two Bits performances by Gator students or well-known alumni. Every Saturday, The Swamp welcomes one of our own to the field to kick off our pregame festivities. Former honorary Mr. Two Bits includes UF President Kent Fuchs, Florida football icon Steve Spurrier, and decorated UF Olympic swimmer Caeleb Dressel.

Alma Mater

After a win in the Swamp, the entire Gator team and coaching staff run over to the band to sing our Alma Mater. Every Gator must know the lyrics to the Alma Mater by the time they graduate.

University of Florida Alma Mater
Florida, our Alma Mater
Thy glorious name we praise
All thy loyal sons and daughters
A joyous song shall raise
Where palm and pine are blowing
Where southern seas are flowing
Shine forth thy noble Gothic walls
Thy lovely vine clad halls
‘Neath the Orange and Blue victorious
our love shall never fail
There’s no other name so glorious
All hail, Florida, hail.

Who are Albert and Alberta?

Albert has been depicted in many forms, from a live alligator in 1957 to a robotic alligator and lastly as a full-body vinyl costume introduced in 1970, that we still know and love today. Alberta was later introduced as Albert’s sidekick in 1986. This duo epitomizes the spirit, loyalty, and love that lies within all Gator fans. Be on the lookout for the pair throughout Homecoming weekend!


Begin practicing all of our Gator cheers so you are ready for the festivities and for game day in The Swamp. We hope to see you this Homecoming weekend, chomping along with the rest of us and cheering on our team!