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College football is gridiron football consisting of American football played by teams of student athletes fielded by American universities, colleges, and military academies, or Canadian football played by teams of student athletes fielded by Canadian universities. It was through college football play that American football rules first gained popularity in the United States.

Unlike most other sports in North America, no minor league farm organizations exist in American or Canadian football. Therefore, college football is generally considered to be the second tier of American football in the United States and Canadian football in Canada; one step ahead of high school competition, and one step below professional competition. However, in some areas of the country, college football is more popular than professional football, and for much of the early 20th century, college football was seen as more prestigious than professional football.

It is in college football where a player's performance directly impacts his chances of playing professional football. The best collegiate players will typically declare for the professional draft after three to four years of collegiate competition, with the NFL holding its annual draft every spring in which 256 players are selected annually. Those not selected can still attempt to land an NFL roster spot as an undrafted free agent.

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Two football players including a quarterback yelling a play and a running back to his left. Both are wearing gold/maise/yellow pants with blue jerseys.
Robert Patrick "Tate" Forcier (born August 7, 1990) is an American football quarterback from San Diego, California. He is currently the starting quarterback for the 2009 Michigan Wolverines football team. He is from a family of quarterbacks with two older brothers, who played Pacific-10 Conference football and a father who also played quarterback in college. His oldest brother had played briefly for the Michigan Wolverines football team before transferring to Stanford University. Following in the footsteps of his brothers and father, Forcier has been a quarterback since his Junior PeeWee Pop Warner Football days.

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Aerial view of Harvard Stadium in Boston, in the form of a letter U with a capital H in the center of the field and the words Harvard and Crimson at either end

Yale's original mascot, Handsome Dan

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A football player with a white jersey waving towards the camera.
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DeSean Jackson of the California Bears waves to the crowd at California's 2007 game against the Oregon Ducks.

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