Game Day Initiative records large increases in student attendance

GAME DAY: Students in the students section cheer on ASU against Oregon State last Saturday. Attendance numbers show that the new Game Day initiative is working as more students are attending games. (Photo by Lisa Bartoli)

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ASU’s Game Day Initiative has been much more successful this year, with an increase in both student football ticket sales and crowd attendance, organizers said.

The Blackout game against the University of Missouri sold 12,305 student tickets and set a record of student attendance with 10,067 students. One week later, the USC game set the second place record by selling 11,516 student tickets and having 10,037 in attendance.

“The Game Day Initiative being more student led has made the initiative immensely better not just for the students involved but for the students Game Day serves: the student body,” Nathan McWhortor, Game Day Initiative social media intern said.

The initiative, which was implemented before the 2010 football season, is expanding to all sports this year. Each sport will see efforts of promoting spirit, pride and tradition so that students will be involved in all of the sports.

Several large factors have contributed to the success of the Sun Devil’s football season and the Game Day initiative this year, Associate Athletic Director William Kennedy said.

“You certainly have the ground work that we had from last year—getting the name of Game Day out there, a good football team, all the hype surrounding the team especially with the new logo, and the large games that we’ve had here so early on in the season,” Kenney said.

The attendance and spirit from the student section at any sporting event are a huge factor to the success of the team, he said.

The Game Day Initiative allows everyone to get into the ASU spirit as well as keep them informed, interior design freshman Raina Peterson said.

“There hasn’t been a time that I’ve been on campus and not seen school spirit,” Peterson said.

Last year, the efforts to promote the initiative were in full force by having pep rallies, pre-game tailgates, post-game events and other activities.

However, changes have been made this year to improve the initiative and target the efforts into bigger promotions and enhancements such as student satisfaction during the pre-game process.

“One of the big changes is in how we distributed wristbands; once students gets their wristband on, they’re free to do whatever they’d like,” Kennedy said.

This year students have the freedom to come and go from the tailgate or pre-game activities after they have received their wristband.

Student sections 32 and 33 at Sun Devil Stadium are now divided into three sub-sections in order to prevent unfair seating based on arrival time, Kennedy said.

Reach the reporter at Christina.tetreault@asu.edu

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