Today's Update: Tuesday, October 20

October 20, 2020

Dear Student Life Team, O-H! Ohio State football is returning, and you probably know that I am a huge football fan, so having the first game coming up Saturday against Nebraska makes me very happy.

It does present some challenges in our COVID reality. We must provide our students with a Scarlet and Great game day experience while at the same time helping them keep safe and healthy. There have been meetings in Student Life and with units across the university on this ever since the Big 10 schedule was announced. A number of work groups have taken a great deal of time and effort to identify ways to accomplish that mission, and plans are coming together. In addition to staff members, the group also engaged the ideas of students including through some guided design-thinking sessions.

The parameters of football games in the ‘Shoe are very different this year. There will be no fans in the stands, just family members of players and coaches, and even these numbers will be restricted. The number of people on the sidelines will be restricted, and Brutus and the cheerleaders will not be there. Outside the stadium, tailgating will not be permitted.

The theme will be “Every Game Is a Home Game,” encouraging students (and other fans) to stay at home and watch the game in small groups. Large gatherings aren’t safe and are not permitted.

No big parties doesn’t mean no fun. We’ll have food trucks off campus, and our Student Life team will be rewarding students acting responsibly.

There will be a number of spirit contests throughout the season, including a front porch decorating contest in the University District, lobby decorating in the residence halls and a banner competition among the sorority and fraternity chapter facilities.

Students will also be able to connect with the team and learn Buckeye traditions online with the Scarlet Saturday livestream in the Ohio State Athletics app, or on the Ohio State Athletics Facebook page. Students can tune in while watching the game and enjoy content streaming from the Ohio Stadium video board, trivia, fun interactive segments and they also will have the opportunity to submit their own photos and videos to be featured.

There will be more fun and engaging activities announced between now and Game Day.

I’m proud of our Student Life team for all their inspired ideas and hard work to make the return of football a Scarlet and Great experience.