CHICAGO | Are you looking for the best sports bars to watch Big Ten college sports in Chicago? Given its location in the ‘heart of America’, Chicago truly is a melting pot of team alliances with proximity to some of the nation’s best sports teams. We love college sports at The City Lane, and are here to tell you some of our favorite Big Ten college sports bars to cheer on your favorite team, by team.
Durkin’s Tavern, Lakeview
This Lakeview neighborhood bar is the closest thing to cheering on the Illini in person. Known for surprise appearances by the Fighting Illini marching band, walk of shame shots and other game day specials, it is easy to join in on the revelry at Durkin’s and forget about just how bad the fighting Illini are playing.
810 W Diversey Parkway
Joe’s Bar, Lincoln Park
Not only is Joe’s Bar the largest bar in Chicago ,but it is also the place to cheer on the Hoosiers. Famed Chicago restauranteur and Joe’s owner, Ed Warm, is a proud Hoosier alum who makes sure that the 120 televisions and high definition projectors have every Indiana game on display. When not watching Indiana, stop by for great country music from up and coming artists.
940 W Weed Street
Four Shadows, Lincoln Park
Hawkeye fans flock to this west Lincoln Park spot for Iowa games. Four Shadows is a neighborhood bar offers a complete ‘stadium experience,’ playing all games with sound, no commercials, and their signature 22 oz. Iowa stadium cups. Make sure to get there early as it fills up fast!
2758 N Ashland Avenue
Dark Horse Tap & Grille, Wrigleyville
This popular Wrigleyville destination is also the official home to the Maryland Terrapins. Game day specials at the Dark Horse include Maryland Style Old Bay Fries, Terp Bombs and stadium cups. With its cozy intimate environment with dark wood and leather booths, the Dark Horse is the perfect place for game day watch parties.
Dark Horse Tap & Grille
3443 N Sheffield Avenue
Duffy’s, Lincoln Park
Fans get loud in Chicago’s own Big House, Duffy’s. Located in Lincoln Park, Duffy’s has been known as the official bar of the University of Michigan since it opened back in 2000. If you can’t be in Ann Arbor, Duffy’s is the place to be to cheer on the maize and blue. Next game day head to Duffy’s to enjoy their fame buffet brunch and enjoy the game with fellow Wolverines.
420½ W Diversey Parkway
Municipal, River North
Spartan fans assemble at Municipal on game days to support their team. Located in the heart of River North, Municipal features over 30 HD TV’s inside and a huge outdoor patio with 4 additional HD TV’s and speakers so you can hear the game inside or out. With over 100 beers on tap, there is sure to be a selection for the most discerning beer fan Municipal takes reservations on Open Table so reserve early for this popular game day spot.
216 W Ohio Street
Kirkwood Bar, Lakeview
This dark-wooden sports den in Lakeview is where Cornhusker fans retreat to catch the big game. Kirkwood is part of the Four Corners Tavern Group which is known for serving delicious pub fare in a fun, friendly neighborhood bar. Game day specials including Cornhusker bombs and Big Red fish bowls, fans can feel like they are back in Lincoln cheering on Nebraska to victory.
2934 N Sheffield Avenue
Kincade’s Bar, Lincoln Park
While many locations support Chicago’s very own Big Ten team, Northwestern, Kincade’s is the place Wildcat fans call home when they are not able to catch the game live at Ryan Field in Evanston. This upscale sports bar features TV’s galore and an expansive food menu beyond traditional bar fare, making it a great place to catch the Wildcats in action.
950 W Armitage Avenue
Woodie’s Flat, Old Town
The relatively new Woodie’s Flat in Old Town has quickly become a local favorite for Buckeye fans and is the official bar of the Ohio State University. This two-story bar is located a renovated brownstone and features a brunch menu sure to cure any hangover. Woodie’s prides itself on making the Buckeye faithful feel like they are back in Columbus for every game with Brutus running around and a Victory Bell for luck!
1535 N Wells Street
AJ Hudson’s Public House, Lakeview
A.J. Hudson’s is where the Nittany Lions congregate to cheer on their team. Penn State revelers will not go hungry at AJ’s as their kitchen stays open until midnight every night of the week. Their signature half-pound Hudson burger might be reason alone to visit AJ Hudson’s Public House. European football fans can come prior to college game days as, A.J. Hudson’s broadcasts many of the European sports matches live.
A.J. Hudson’s Public House
3801 N Ashland Avenue
The Fireplace Inn, Old Town
Located in the popular Old Town neighborhood, The Fireplace Inn has been the place to be to catch the Boilermakers taken on the latest opponent since they opened in 1969. Recently remodeled in 2016, the Fireplace Inn features 40 HD TV’s across two levels which makes for an incredible game day viewing experience.
The Fireplace Inn
1148 N Wells Street
Will’s Northwood’s Inn, Lakeview
The self-proclaimed Camp Randall South, Will’s is the ultimate Chicago Badger bar. From its outdoor beer garden, signature raffles for Wisconsin themed prizes, passed meat & cheese trays, and their ornamental moose, a visit to Wills will have you feeling like you are back home in the Northwoods of Wisconsin. This “Sconnie“ hot spot is frequently visited by the world renown University of Wisconsin marching band and past former Badger and Packer athletes.
Will’s Northwoods Inn
3030 N Racine Avenue
We haven’t been able to locate a bar to cheer on the Minnesota Golden Gophers and Rutgers Scarlet Knights. Let us know if you know of any, or if there are any other bars that you love to go to to cheer on your Big Ten team.