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ODU Students Show School Spirit, Tenting for Tickets to Football Opener

They're free for ODU students, but student tickets to attend the first ODU football game in decades are priceless.

Tired, a little bedraggled, but still having a blast, a few thousand students lined up Monday morning in front of the Ted Constant Convocation Hall ticket office for tickets to the Monarchs' season opener Sept. 5 against Chowan University.

Dozens of tents on the concourse behind the Ted were evidence of the all-nighter many of the students had pulled. By daylight, the line of students snaked right around to the ticket office.

To be near the front, you had to get there early. How early?

"Me and my friends wanted tickets one, two and three, so we got here at 12:30," said Bill Copeland, a junior from Richmond majoring in engineering.

Oh, 12:30 a.m.?

"No, p.m. We've been here for 20 hours."

Students started queuing beside the basketball arena at 6 a.m., after a night of throwing Frisbees, singing songs, making new friends, and almost no sleep.

Dixie House, a junior counseling and human services major from Richmond, arrived at 5:30 Sunday afternoon. Her tent ended up second, ensuring great tickets for the first ODU game.

And the all-night slog? Fantastic. Well, except for the rain.

"It rained pretty hard around 10 p.m. Just enough to make everything muddy and disgusting," House said. "It was crazy. There were news crews out here all night, music playing. I got about two hours of sleep, and woke up when a news helicopter flew over."

The best part?

"There was so much school spirit. All you heard all night were ODU chants and songs."

Head coach Bobby Wilder and his staff arrived at 7:30 a.m. with boxes of Dunkin Donuts. Wilder said the atmosphere around the first game is fantastic.

"I went by last night at 11 p.m. and saw all the tents. It seemed like everyone was having a good time. I drove by at 6 this morning, and it looked like nothing had changed," he said.

"This is what football brings to a campus. That sense of community and spirit and pride in your school. A lot of people here didn't know the person next to them in line. Something like this helps you develop friendships that can last a lifetime."

The Monarchs' first game kicks off at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 5.

This article was posted on: August 24, 2009

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