It’s been 293 days since Florida football hosted an opponent in the Swamp.
Ben Hill Griffin Stadium has seen concerts and graduations, but it hasn’t seen competitive football for quite some time.
Gators fans’ thirst for football back in the Swamp will finally be quenched this Saturday as the team takes on UT-Martin in its home opener, accompanied with some new initiatives.
In an effort to improve the experience every Saturday for Gator Nation, the University Athletic Association partnered with VenueNext to release the official Florida Gators App. With this Apple and Android-friendly app, fans and students can connect their Ticketmaster accounts with just a tap, marking the end of traditional paper ticket pick-ups.
“The app is a fan app, not specific just to students, but it does give our students a chance to get mobile tickets instead of having to come to the stadium Tuesday through Thursday on game week to pick up,” said Alicia Longworth, associate athletics director for marketing and promotions. “This technology is really adding a convenience factor for students and hopefully making it easier for them to get into ‘The Swamp’ on Saturdays.”
In addition to claiming tickets, the app also allows fans and students to make in-app concession purchases, browse records and stats dating back to 1990 and store credit card information within the app. The University said it hopes these conveniences, along with the recent addition of full-time Wi-Fi in the stadium, will attract more students to attend games and participate in all the experiences Florida game days have to offer.
“College football has been built on tradition and students are truly what make it so unique and special,” Longworth said. “From the student band to the 18,000-plus students in our student section, they all come together to make ‘The Swamp’ such a great place to play. We need our students to continue to show up each Saturday, and we will continue to evaluate all aspects of the fan experience to keep making it as fun as we can for them and our fans.”
Follow Victor Prieto on Twitter @victorprieto_11. Contact him at [email protected].