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Louisville game expected to draw capacity crowd

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Marshall University sophomore tight end Ryan Yurachek catches a touchdown pass during its game against the University of Southern Mississippi Oct. 9.

Marshall University sophomore tight end Ryan Yurachek catches a touchdown pass during its game against the University of Southern Mississippi Oct. 9.

Richard Crank

Richard Crank

Marshall University sophomore tight end Ryan Yurachek catches a touchdown pass during its game against the University of Southern Mississippi Oct. 9.

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A capacity crowd is expected this Saturday at the Joan C. Edwards Stadium for Marshall’s home football game against the University of Louisville, with an estimate of 39,000-40,000 attendees.

Almost 6,200 available student tickets and Marshall Maniacs memberships were distributed by Wednesday, three days before the game.

In addition to the influx of Marshall fans, Louisville fans are expected to gather in force at the visitor section in the northeast corner of the stadium.

“The visiting team can request tickets on consignment, contractually they get a certain amount of tickets. We issued them about 2,700 tickets. I would not be surprised if they brought an additional thousand fans,” said Aaron Goebbel, associate director of athletics for external affairs.

According to www.herdzone.com, Saturday’s crowd will be the largest at Joan C. Edwards Stadium since Perdue drew 38,791 last season. In 2010, the Joan drew its largest crowd in history when 41,382 gathered to watch the Herd play West Virginia University.

For the second year in a row, Marshall will draw a historic crowd at Joan C. Edwards Stadium while opposing a Power Five Conference team. The top five largest crowds at Joan C. Edwards Stadium have been against Power Five Conference teams.

“I’m expecting a top-3 crowd. We don’t have many tickets left, there are some, but it should be an incredibly exciting atmosphere. Anytime you can play in that atmosphere, your players are excited, your fans want to be a part of it and it’s great for the community,” said Jason Corriher, assistant athletic director for media relations.

After their 3-0 start and rout of Florida State last week, number three ranked Louisville will be the highest ranking FBS team to ever visit Marshall.

For the first time in history, Marshall is planning to “stripe the stadium.” Fans are encouraged to wear either green or white based on the stadium section on their ticket. Neighboring sections will alternate between green and white to give the stadium a striped effect.

The student section, however, will remain completely green. Marshall’s cheer squad and dance team will distribute 10,000 green and white T-shirts throughout the stadium.

“We have an email marketing platform that we can use for anyone who has bought a ticket,” Goebbel said. “We segment that individual in the email to let them know if they are in a green section or a white section. We’ve been bombarding people with emails and newspaper ads and social media graphics.”

Historically, Marshall has not opposed teams in the Power Five. However, Marshall will oppose three different Power Five teams during the 2016-2017 season.

“Mr. Hamrick has done a nice job with our scheduling,” Goebbel said. “Our plan is already playing out. We’ve showed our cards. Over the next five years, you’re looking at a combination of North Carolina State, Boise State, Navy, Pitt and Cincinnati. We’re bringing a solid name brand back here yearly until 2024-2025.”

Rick Farlow can be contacted at [email protected]

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