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September 07, 2011 - Image 10

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2011-09-07

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10A -- Wednesday, September 7, 2011

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Notre Dame game might not be last 'Under the Lights'

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eisman-winner her, to avoid playing in cold condi-
tions at night. However, Michigan
Howard will State could be in.
"That'd be kind of fun," Bran-
)e recognized don said.
at halftime Whenever the Big Ten athletic
directors get together, Brandon
asks questions, trying to figure out
By TIM ROHAN what worked and what didn't with
Daily Sports Editor other schools' night games.
The answer was to watch out
ntion students and unruly for the few "knuckleheads" that
the Michigan footballteam. try to create a "less than positive"
gan Athletic Director Dave environment. Wisconsin previ-
on has a warning for you: ously made students who were
games at kicked out of games for alcohol
ig House NOTEBOOK violations take breathalyzer tests
privilege, before being admitted to the sta-
ight. Don't take it for grant- dium.
nd you'll earn another, and This is the scenario where
r. the Michigan-Notre Dame game
his goes well, I would like doesn't go well, and the privilege
ne night game per year - if is taken away.
well." Brandon said. "If it "I don't think we need to be
t go well, it doesn't matter subtle about it," Brandon said.
'd like to do. "It's a Saturday night. Itstarts at
an extent, we could move 8 o'clock and people have all day
situation where we offer to kind of celebrate and prepare
pportunity on a once-a- for this momentous occasion. And
basis. And that wouldn't the people we worry about are the
sarantee - it would have to people that over-celebrate.
right team, the right situa- "If it can be a positive expe-
rience ... and we don't have any
n though, Brandon said incidents that make anybody look
Dame was the right choice at this and say ... 'This was a bad
'in the first night game in decision to do a night game,' then
g House, the right team I think we'll have achieved a suc-
be anyone. Brandon doesn't cessful outcome."
he night game to be exclu- Those who aren't ina condition
against one opponent every to enter the stadium or who try
to bring alcohol, "they'll be dealt
ndon said he doesn't think with," he said.
en team would turn down Brandon estimated that 114,000
ance to play a night game in to 115,000 people will be in atten-
g House. And Brandon also dance, the largest crowd in Michi-
doesn't have to necessarily gan history.
val or a big-time opponent. Brandon said the game basi-
open to "fun" options. But cally sold out the minute tickets
oesn't include Ohio State. went out. At a regents meeting a
on won't even have the few weeks ago, he half-joked that
game conversation with the there weren't any tickets left, even
yes because one of Bran- for the regents.
criteria was that he'd like Initially, Brandon's office
dule potential night games received a 99-percent approval
the last weekend in Octo- rating for the game, and one per-

cent preferred Bo Schembechler's
philosophy of playing at noon.
Now, Brandon says, that one
percent is asking for more tickets
to the game.
"We could easily sell another
25 or 50,000 tickets to this game,"
Brandon said. "(The) supply and
demand models get blownup here.
We wish we had a bigger stadium.
"Inmoderntimes,based onalot
of people that have been around
for a long time, around Michigan
football, the Athletic Department,
and all of the records that we
have, this would be the highest-
demanded ticket ever."
The only thing holding some-
thing like this back before may
have been a lack of stadium
lighting, which has since been
installed.
Events like the Big Chill at the
Big House last December and past
football games ending at night
gave Brandon a feel for how every-
thing would work.
It'll take a few weeks of debrief-
ing and review, but Brandon
should come to a decision as to
whether the night game could
become an annual event.
"We'd love to see this be some-
thing that we can do from time to
time," Brandon said. "But Satur-
day's going to be a significant test.
"We know this is doable. This
is not Mission Impossible. But we
need to do it well. And we need to
do it the Michigan way."
DESMOND HONORED: Should
Desmond Howard's No. 21 be
retired?
Not many occasions would be
more perfect to bestow the honor
of the Heisman Trophy Winner
than Saturday. But Brandon extin-
guished those rumors Tuesday.
"We're going to recognize Des-
mond, and you stay tuned for how
that's going to happen," Brandon
said.
"The retirement of jerseys situ-
ation is one that we've been pretty
public about in terms of having

Michigan Athletic Director Dave Brandon said he would not like the football team to play a night game against Ohio State.

some serious difficulties and limi-
tations.
"SoI would not look forward to
that, but I would look forward to
other things."
At halftime howard will be rec-
ognized, along with his family, for
his recent induction into the Col-
lege Football Hall of Fame.
Brandon's words imply it may
be something more than a simple
ceremony.
SCOREBOARD FIXES: Brandon
was pleased with the new score-
boards installed in the Big House,
but he's glad the technology is
advanced enough that they can
make minor changes.
A few items traditionally found
on the old scoreboards didn't mesh
with the new software. Fans also
wanted more in-game stats and
scores from around the country,
as well as what yard line the ball
is on and the down-and-distance.

"We'll get better and learnfrom
some of our experience and feed-
back this past weekend," Brandon
said. "And I think as we get more
and more used to this technology
(we'll) come up with more ways to
make it come to life and excite our
fans."
GAMEDAY'S COMING: For
the first time since 2007, ESPN's
College Gameday will be in Ann
Arbor.
The show will be broadcast on
Central Campus at Ingalls Mall,
where Brandon thought he could
funnel some of the action. It will
air from 9 a.m. until noon on Sat-
urday. Even though Notre Dame
lost its season opener, there are
plenty of good reasons Gameday is
coming, Brandon said.
"We all know the ratings on
Gameday are incredible," he said.
"It's kind of the premiere pre-
game show and the fact that they

chose to come to Ann Arbor is
a big deal. They had some other
choices. There's some other games
are going on - some pretty signifi-
cant matchups.
"We think it's partially because
it's our first night game ever. We
think it's partially because it's
Michigan-Notre Dame. We think
it's partially because of Desmond.
All of that rolled into a situation
where they're here for the first
time in a while."
NOTES: One-hundred thou-
sand maize pom-poms will be
distributed inside the stadium...
With the game falling on Septem-
ber 10, there will be a 9/11 tribute;
with the playing of "God Bless
America" and there will be a fly
over after the Anthem. ... At half-
time, parachutists will do a "night
jump," and the Michigan March
ing Band has prepared a special
performance.

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