COLLEGE GAMEDAY COMES TO FARGO
Published: Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, September 25, 2013 14:09
Big and Rich’s music video of “We’re Comin’ to Your City” is the usual kickoff to ESPN’s "College GameDay," one of television’s premiere collegiate pregame shows.
And for NDSU fans, along with the whole city of Fargo, that tune couldn’t come soon enough.
"GameDay" hosts Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit, Lee Corso and Desmond Howard will be coming to NDSU’s city and setting up shop to display the best Fargo has to offer—the seas of green and gold known as Bison Nation on game day. Start time for the show is set to begin at 8 a.m. on Saturday in downtown Fargo.
“I think [for] any guy that plays college football, it’s a neat deal when you see "GameDay" come to your campus,” NDSU head coach Craig Bohl said. “[The players] have really been good as far as taking care of the business at hand.”
Thus far, "GameDay" has visited the campuses of Texas A&M, Clemson and Michigan. This will also be the first time in five years the show has stopped at an FCS school since traveling to Florida A&M in 2008.
Bohl said he recognizes "GameDay’s" appearance as an enormous step for the Bison community.
“Make no mistake, the recognition for our institution, our football program and our athletic department is exponential,” he said. “I think it’s going to have a long-lasting effect on how we’re viewed nationally.”
Ready for the Bison faithful, which usually show up in bunches, the police of Fargo have prepared for the masses to appear near "GameDay’s" set. The production will take place on the corner of Broadway Drive and Third Avenue North, so the city will cut off Broadway between Second and Fourth Avenue, or even more if necessary for pedestrian traffic.
“This is an opportunity to showcase Fargo,” Lt. Joel Vettel said. “We’re going to do all we can to not only make this a great event for the city of Fargo, but we’ll make sure we’re welcoming ESPN as an organization.”
Though Vettel said he and his team are preparing for the worst, they will be expecting the best.
“We’re going to ask that everyone be patient with us,” he said. “This is something that’s going to be extraordinary for the city, and also pretty groundbreaking. We know it’s going to impact a number of people throughout the city.”
NDSU athletic director Gene Taylor said ESPN is very excited about coming to Fargo and showcasing the Bison team. Since attracting the attention of many since the upset of returning Big 12 champion Kansas State, Taylor said both sides are thrilled for the show to come to Fargo.
“We’re really excited about this,” he said. “The ESPN crew, the ESPN producer I talked with from Bristol, [Conn.] and the folks that were here yesterday, they are looking forward to hosting here. They’re excited about coming to Fargo.”
Taylor said the chosen venue is an excellent place to display the city of Fargo to the country. While some Bison fans were hoping for a location closer to the Fargodome, Taylor is sure ESPN’s team chose wisely.
“They said it would be one of the best shows they’ve ever produced,” Taylor said. “They saw that sign and they thought it was just the perfect sight for their venue.”
Through it all, Bohl and the rest of his Bison squad have been gearing up for a game against Delaware State. While he is completely zoned in on winning this Saturday, he said he was still pleased to have such an opportunity arise for Fargo.
“It’s certainly well received,” Bohl said. “It’s really appreciated, but it’s very important for us to play a football game. As I’ve said before, what goes on between the lines doesn’t have a lot to do with game day.”
Revised Sept. 25 1:04 p.m.