Minium: Athletic Director Wood Selig Set Home Football Game Starting Times For the Convenience of Fans
By ODU Athletics
By Harry Minium
If you’re an Old Dominion football fan, you may be wondering why the University announced the starting times for its six home games in early May.
Fans often don’t know until a few weeks before a game when it will kick off. Last year, most game times weren’t announced until June and some not until much later.
But ODU issued a press release Wednesday morning with the starting times, and the times were finalized early for the convenience of fans.
ODU athletic director Wood Selig spoke with his staff at a Tuesday morning meeting and decided this season will be different than most.
“We want our game times to be as convenient as possible for our fans,” he said. “And we want to get the starting times out there early so they can plan their weekends in advance.
“Our fans have waited for so long for first class amenities in our new S.B. Ballard Stadium. We need this to be the season that above everything else, we take care of our deserving, faithful fans.”
Kornblau Field at S.B. Ballard Stadium is undergoing a $67.5 million renovation that will provide most ODU fans with 21st Century amenities.
Although the deadline for renewing season tickets passed last week, tickets can be purchased now for as little as $99 per seat and there will be excellent sideline seats available. ODU added 2,000 seats to the east and west sides, so the inventory has expanded. But there truly isn’t a bad seat on either sideline.
The stands have just 40 rows of seats, the same as Foreman Field, yet they are angled more vertically than they were at the old stadium. The stadium was also moved closer to the field, so fans will feel like they’re hovering over the field of play.
The ends of each sideline are angled inward so that fans on the goal line will face the action and not the goal line.
You truly need to see the stadium to understand how much bigger and better it will be. I’ve toured the stadium and it’s going to be an awesome place to watch a football game.
Because construction is ongoing, fans aren’t allowed to yet tour the stadium, but officials hope to announce several tour dates later this summer in which you will be able to walk into the stadium and pick your seats, which you can keep for the rest of your life if you want to.
And that's going to be pretty cool.
It won’t be complicated. You’ll literally be able to pick up a ticket on a seat, take it to ODU officials and purchase your tickets for the price listed.
No donations required. No waiting for seat selection. You can get it all done in one quick trip.
Fans who purchase season tickets in May will have the opportunity to choose their seats at the conclusion of the seat selection process in early June.
The opener against Norfolk State on Aug. 31 kicks off at 7 p.m. Early-season games are often set to begin at 6, but because it’s usually hot and humid in August, Selig surmised that extra hour will give fans a break from the heat, including a chance to tail-gate as the sun is going down.
The following two games, Sept. 28 against East Carolina and Oct. 5 against Western Kentucky, will start at 6 because that’s likely to be the optimal time for families.
Later games against Florida Atlantic (Oct. 26 at 3:30 p.m.), Texas-San Antonio (Nov. 9 at 2 p.m.) and Charlotte (Nov. 30 at 2 p.m.) are set for the afternoon because by then, chilly weather is often a problem.
The new S.B. Ballard Stadium was built primarily to improve the fan experience. For ten seasons, ODU supporters sat in crowded, cramped uncomfortable seats and often saw long lines at concession stands and too many portable restrooms.
Fans will have new restrooms and concession stands and 15,962 new sideline seats with back supports, including more than 6,100 chair-back seats.
A new jumbo screen video board, new sound system and three new ribbon scoreboards have been added and that will give the stadium a big time look and feel.
Words can’t describe just how nice it will be. As I said, you’ll have to see it to believe it.
Later this summer, you’ll be able to see for yourself. You won’t want to miss the chance to, in a sense, kick the tires. You’ll be able try out the seats before buying them.
Like I said, Selig wants this to be the year ODU takes care of its fans.
Contact Minium: firstname.lastname@example.org