We’ve already had one pretty major upset, with No. 4 Florida football falling to No. 21 Texas A&M at Kyle Field. Dan Mullen thinks that the pretty significant Texas A&M crowd made a difference.
It was pretty jarring to see how many people were at the game in College Station, considering the ongoing rise in COVID-19 rates around the country. The Aggies reportedly let in 30,000 fans in for today’s game. To me, and many online during the game, it looked like far more than that.
Florida governor Ron DeSantis recently gave sports teams the go-ahead for full capacity at stadiums, including the state’s college football teams. So far, it doesn’t sound like teams are prepared to take him up on it, but if Florida wanted to pack the stands, it could legally do so next week with LSU coming to town.
“Hopefully the university administration follows the Governor’s ruling,” Dan Mullen said after the game, per beat writer Graham Hall. “…to let us pack The Swamp and give us the home-field advantage that Texas A&M had today.”
#Gators coach Dan Mullen discussing advantage from crowd noise, says "hopefully the university administration follows the Governor's ruling…to let us pack The Swamp and give us the home-field advantage that Texas A&M had today."
— Graham Hall (@GrahamHall_) October 10, 2020
“Absolutely I want to see 90,000 in The Swamp next week,” Mullen continued. “The entire student section, it must have been 50,000 going crazy behind our bench next week.”
So far, Florida football has been limiting attendance at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium to 20-percent, or about 17,000 fans in attendance. Given the significant health concerns, it is unclear if they’d even be able to “pack” the game. They reportedly didn’t sell out tickets in their first home game against South Carolina.
Florida had problems selling its lowered allotment amid the pandemic last week. No way they pack the Swamp, even if Scott Stricklin and admin allow full attendance in Gainesville. https://t.co/fRRjStb7BE
— Brandon Marcello (@bmarcello) October 10, 2020
It goes without saying, but even with DeSantis’ decision, allowing 90,000 people at the Swamp just doesn’t sound like a good idea, just like the scenes are Kyle Field were disconcerting today.
We’re lucky to have college football at all this year. To try and push the envelope as the rates of transmission in the country continue to rise in many areas in the spirit of home frield advantage is frankly pretty selfish.