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Anchor Drop, October 7, 2020: The controversy of empty stands

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Oh, okay, let’s talk about it.

NCAA Football: Louisiana State at Vanderbilt Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning.

Optional Musical Accompaniment

All right, so... let’s talk about the prospect of fans in the stands. Adam Sparks and Mike Organ discussed the subject on the latest edition of the Breaking Down the Dores podcast yesterday, and since as far as we know the stands for Saturday’s home game against South Carolina will be as empty as they were last weekend... well, let’s have that talk.

At a very basic level, probably no one should have fans in the stands at the moment. MLB hasn’t had fans in attendance all season, neither has the NBA, and only a handful of NFL teams do. As somebody who’s been watching MLB games with cardboard cutouts in the stands and piped-in crowd noise, I have to ask why we were even discussing the possibility of having fans.

Now I can understand why people are upset about allowing in a handful of students (2000 was the official attendance on Saturday) and not allowing in players’ families. I can somewhat justify it based on the fact that Vanderbilt is apparently testing students weekly while you can’t actually be sure that some player’s parent does not have the virus. And I can understand why you’d be curious why we let in 2000 students and then had them all sit in the same area of the stadium. Still, uh, are we really the ones who are wrong here when this was also a scene at an SEC football game on Saturday?

But, really, I’m interested to hear everyone’s thoughts here.

VandySports has George Plaster on to talk the hire of deputy AD Tommy McClelland. And the Hustler has its weekly Beyond Enemy Bylines column with the editor of South Carolina’s student newspaper, The Daily Gamecock.

Oh, yeah, and Derek Mason had his weekly press conference yesterday.

(While I was pulling this up, I noticed that the basketball team has released a hype video, for those of you interested in such things.)

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