WACO, Texas (KWTX) It was an early morning for Baylor fans and students on Saturday as they were up and at the Ferrell Center several hours before game time in order to try to get seats and pack the house for ESPN's College Gameday ahead of Baylor’s matchup with Kansas. Several hundred students even slept in the concourse of the stadium on Friday to guarantee their seats.
“We were allowed to leave if we wanted to go to other events like the baseball game or Sing,” said Riley Smith, a junior at Baylor. “We left for a little bit, tried to sleep. Only got about an hour's worth of sleep. Then we got up and they funneled us in here and now its game time.”
With today’s matchup between the No. 1 Bears and No. 3 Jayhawks being called the biggest game in Baylor men's basketball history, the game was a sellout instantly. The official attendance was tallied at a record tying max of 10,627.
“I could already tell, I mean its 8:30 in the morning and most of us haven't had a lot of sleep, and it's already pretty loud in here,” said Riley ahead of the game. “So the environment is going to be great.”
Baylor fans represented well on national television even though the setup and turn around was a little different for College Gameday because of an 11 a.m. game start time.
“It'll be a seamless transition to the show and the game,” said ESPN College Basketball Analyst, Jay Bilas. “Which we don't usually have. Usually the show ends and you have hours before the game. So this is unique for us. And it'll be a lot of and a lot of moving parts for us. Sort of the excitement of the players warming up and getting ready for the game, and having a traditional game day show for us, it'll be really fun.”