LSU to allow nearly 26K fans, bans tailgating

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Defending national champion LSU will have fans this season at 25% capacity of Tiger Stadium but no tailgating on campus, the school announced Wednesday.

Fans will be required to wear face coverings and observe social distancing guidelines because of the coronavirus pandemic. Although no tailgating is allowed, fans will be able to gather near their vehicles with those in their traveling parties.

Tiger Stadium has a capacity of 102,321, so the reduction would allow 25,580 fans to attend LSU home games.

“This plan focuses on the health and safety of all those attending LSU football games, from the fans to the team to the workers,” Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said in a statement. “By reducing the capacity and taking a year off from tailgating, which puts LSU in line with other SEC schools, the plan allows for fans to be socially distanced in Death Valley. I encourage the Tiger faithful to adhere to these guidelines and to act responsibly, as there is still a lot of COVID in Louisiana.

“We will continue to monitor our case counts, test positivity rate and hospitalizations and make adjustments as necessary. While this season is undoubtedly starting out differently from a normal football season, with COVID keeping all of us from celebrating together, nothing can dim the support we have for our LSU Tigers.”

LSU is set to host Mississippi State on Sept. 26 in the season opener, with other scheduled home games against Missouri, South Carolina, Alabama and Ole Miss.

The school is not selling single-game tickets and said season-ticket holders should expect a reduced allotment of tickets so all can attend games. Student tickets will be made available.

“By all of us doing a few things differently this season, we’re going to safely play football with fans in the stands and that’s exciting for everyone who loves LSU,” athletic director Scott Woodward said in a statement.

Edwards told reporters Tuesday that Louisiana has had more COVID-19 cases per capita than any other state in the SEC footprint.

“We’ve already ridden the crest of two surges,” he said. “I’m not anxious to do it a third time.”

Texas also announced Wednesday that it will allow fans at 25% capacity this season with no tailgating. The Longhorns open the season Saturday against UTEP.

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