Face masks and football: What to expect on game days this fall

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CW / Leah Goggins

Keely Brewer | @keelykbrewer and Katie Windham | @ktwindham5

Game days in Bryant-Denny Stadium will look different for UA students this fall. Tailgating is off limits, face masks are required and the stadium will maintain 20% seating capacity.  

Given the possibility of circumstances changing throughout the season, Alabama Athletics partnered with the Student Government Association to offer a single game sales process for students. Students will be limited to a maximum of two games, priced at $20 per game plus a $3 order charge, “to maximize inventory and reach as many students as possible.”

Though students will be able to attend a maximum of two home games, it is guaranteed that these two games will be against an SEC opponent. 

Alabama’s full schedule can be found here.

“I mean, I’ve been a guy that’s been wanting to play ten SEC games for a long time, so this year we get to do that,” Nick Saban said. “I think it’s good for our players who get the opportunity to create value against 10 really quality opponents in our league. And I think it’s going to be very challenging because it’s going to be every week, you’re going to have a very, very good opponent. But I think it’s good for the fans.”

The opt-in process will take place on RollTide.com from 8 a.m. on Monday through 5 p.m. on Tuesday the week prior to the game, and tickets will be awarded based on UA credit hours earned with priority given to upperclassmen. Lower versus upper bowl allocations will similarly be dependent on credit hours earned. 

The Tide Loyalty Points program will be suspended for the season due to reduced stadium capacity and the limited number of games students can attend. In the event that Alabama makes it to the postseason, student tickets will be distributed based on credits.

In accordance with public health guidelines, the capacity will be limited to allow for social distancing. All spectators will have to wear face masks for entry; disposable masks will be provided to those who fail to bring their own.

Following the announcement of limited stadium seating for the upcoming football season, the SGA cancelled its student organized block seating. 

Block seating allows SOURCE-registered organizations to reserve space for its members at home games but “requires an in-stadium capacity above the determined maximum, making the program unfeasible,” SGA explained in an announcement on Twitter. 

Alabama Athletics announced that for the first time there will be mobile-only tickets to make the entry process smoother and safer on game days. All student and non-student tickets will be scanned through mobile devices to help with contactless entry to the stadium. Unlike past seasons, students will not be able to upgrade their tickets for a non-student guest.

While in line for metal detectors, which will be organized to promote social distancing, all spectators must present a green GuideSafe Event Passport to a staff member. Anyone who presents a red passport, which results from logging any COVID-19 symptoms or exposure to an individual who tested positive for the virus, will be denied entry. 

Once inside the stadium, spectators will be able to purchase from a limited menu of prepackaged food at concessions where half of the registers will be open. Water monsters, where fans could previously fill up personal water bottles and paper cups for free, will be unavailable this season. 

These new game day procedures will be put to the test for the Crimson Tide’s home opener against Texas A&M on Oct. 3. Alabama opens the season on the road against Missouri on Sept. 26.  

More details can be found at UA Gameday.