In a letter to the Iowa State community, Cyclones Athletic Director Jamie Pollard said the following:
Dear Cyclone fans,
During the past several weeks, we have been working closely with university officials as it relates to having fans at home football games. As a result of those discussions, we have decided to provide fans, who purchased season tickets, the opportunity to attend our opener on Sept. 12 vs. Louisiana.
Our staff has strategically reassigned all seat locations using current Cyclone Club giving levels, priority points within those levels and taking into account location and/or price, to create improved social distancing. We estimate there will be approximately 25,000 fans at the first game.
If our mitigation actions are successful, we will allow all season ticket purchasers to attend the Oklahoma game Oct. 3. However, if we determine that mitigation measures were not followed adequately at the first game, we will have no fans at future games (beginning with Oklahoma).
An important factor in the decision to allow fans is our belief that Cyclone fans are willing to adhere to our mitigation measures. The purpose of this letter is to ask for your support in helping create a safe environment while also providing our team an impactful home field advantage. This is an incredible opportunity for Iowa State University to showcase its ability to successfully navigate the challenges associated with large outdoor events during a pandemic.
In order for our plans to succeed, we need full buy-in from everyone. I wanted to highlight several of the most important elements from the mitigation document we linked above.
- Health Check – If you are sick or have symptoms related to COVID-19, please do not come to the game. Stay home and cheer on the Cyclones on television.
- Parking – Fans should arrive early to avoid traffic congestion, park their vehicle, gather game gear and walk directly to the stadium for entrance. Do not gather in the parking lots to socialize.
- No Tailgating – There will be no tailgating allowed on university-owned property, including parking lots and grass areas adjacent to parking lots. Fans may not bring nor set up items normally associated with a tailgate such as lawn chairs, coolers, grills, tents, canopies, tables, etc.
- Face Coverings – Wear your face covering upon exit from your vehicle. Face coverings will be required at ALL times for ALL individuals. Anyone, who refuses to properly wear a face covering, will be denied access and/or removed from the stadium. Gaiters and face shields are acceptable face coverings.
- Stadium Entry – Prepare to enter the stadium early. Gates will open 90 minutes prior to kickoff. Honor other fans’ wishes for physical distancing and avoid crowding at entry.
- Seating – All fans were reassigned new seating locations and it is critical to sit in those seats to maintain social distancing.
- Fan Flow – We encourage fans to remain in their seats as much as possible to limit congestion on the concourses.
- Departing the Stadium – Use your own judgment when departing the stadium. Take your time while leaving and respect others desire for physical distancing. There will be no tailgating or social gatherings allowed in the parking lots after the game.
As we previously shared, attempts to implement mitigation strategies to a standard of absolute protection is simply not reasonable. It will ultimately be up to each attendee to decide if they are comfortable attending games given the mitigation strategies we implement.
Every person has a unique perspective of the COVID-19 pandemic. Some are fearless, others are cautious. Our measures will be too restrictive for some and too lenient for others. All we ask is that you respect others, follow our guidelines and support the Cyclones.
Lastly, this information is subject to revision. We will continue to monitor the situation closely the next two weeks and will take appropriate actions, including no fans for the first game, if circumstances warrant changes.
We look forward to seeing you on Sept. 12 at MidAmerican Energy Field at Jack Trice Stadium.