SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC NEWS)—In addition to enforcing masks, social distancing, and no handshakes, the Syracuse community has another “new normal” to add to its list: no in-person football games.
New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo banned fans from attending any sporting event.This order comes as renovations on the Carrier Dome wrap up just in time for the football season home opener against Georgia Tech on Saturday, September 26.
Josh Schneider, a student at Syracuse University, was not pleased to hear that he wouldn’t be able to attend the football games this year.
“I was pretty upset not gonna lie. I mean I was really looking forward to going to the football games. It’s just not as entertaining. The thrill and the excitement of being in the dome, there’s nothing like it,” Schneider said.
According to Syracuse University’s statement made to the federal government, SU generated almost $100 million dollars in total revenue from its athletic teams last year. Football games alone contributed to about half of this revenue.
Sports management professor Dennis Deninger explained how having people in the seats is what generates the most revenue for the university on gamedays.
“You aren’t collecting the money from the seats that everybody would’ve been occupying. Neither does the money from concessions or parking get collected,” Deninger said.
Although most athletes will have their time to shine in the Dome, there is one team that received the short end of the stick. The SU Spirit Team consisting of cheerleaders, the dance team, and the mascot Otto, won’t be allowed to experience the newly renovated Dome in person.
Dena Segbers, spirit coordinator and head cheerleading coach at SU, said her athletes didn’t take the news well either.
“Just overwhelming sadness that we’re not going to be on the field. We’ve been looking forward to having this new experience and being an active part in that new experience. So it has just been overwhelmingly sad,” Segbers said.
Syracuse Athletics and the Spirit Team plan to engage fans in a safer way though a second-screen experience called “Cuse on the Couch.” Fans can watch the pregame show a half-hour before kick-off on Cuse.com or the Cuse app on any mobile device.