As if Fresno Stateâ€™s first home football game against a Big Ten opponent isnâ€™t enough excitement, Saturdayâ€™s Bulldog Stadium sellout crowd will get to see the national champion Bulldogs baseball team, learn which TimeOut voters chose for mascot and enjoy a thrilling flyover by Air National Guard F-16s.
But come early to enjoy it all, officials say.
The â€œWonderDogsâ€ baseball team that captured the College World Series in June will be on the field at 7:10 p.m. with members of the local U.S. Congressional delegation who will present the proclamation that was read in Congress after the team won the 2008 NCAA title.
Also honored will be other Bulldog teams that won WAC Championships last year: baseball womenâ€™s golf, womenâ€™s tennis and womenâ€™s basketball, as well as the WAC individual champions from track and field.
Pregame activities start at 3:30 p.m. in family friendly Bulldog Boulevard is located in the Red Lot east of the stadium. Free and open to the public, it features interactive games, food, live entertainment and more. The Fresno State Spirit Squad, Mutts in Motion, the Fresno State Marching Band and equestrian and soccer student-athletes and coaches will appear.
At Bulldog Boulevard, the TimeOut selected by fan voting will make his first public appearance at approximately 5:15 p.m. Fans were asked to vote on which of two TimeOut costume they liked. Then at the game, TimeOut will make his traditional pre-game walk down the south ramp leading the Fresno State cheerleaders to the field.
Game activities will get off to flying start â€“ literally — at approximately 7:20 p.m. when the California Air National Guardâ€˜s Fresno based 144th Fighter Wing squadron will perform a flyover salute prior to kickoff. Pilots flying the F-16s are Fresno State alumni.
Athletics Department and city of Fresno officials are urging fans to arrive early and take advantage of the new and improved shuttle bus route from the parking lots to the stadium. The new route, stemming from a change in Federal Transportation Administration guidelines, includes a “bus only” lane surrounding the campus. With large crowds and heavy traffic anticipated this season, 15 FAX shuttle buses will begin operation two hours prior to kickoff, taking fans from parking lots west of the Save Mart Center to the stadium.
Other game day facts for fans:
- All public parking areas will open at 3:30 p.m.
- To speed up gate entrance at Bulldog Stadium, fans are asked to have tickets out and ready to be scanned before approaching the gate. Each individual entering the stadium should have only their ticket in hand, not multiple tickets for others.
- The Bulldog Shop has commemorative Fresno State vs. Wisconsin Real California Football â€œgame dayâ€ T-shirts for $10 while supplies last.
- The Kennel Bookstore on campus is holding a â€œSpirit Days Saleâ€ with a 20% discount for game day apparel through Saturday. The bookstore is open 7:30 to 5 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday.
- Alcohol is not sold inside the stadium and may not be brought inside the stadium, per a CSU systemwide policy enacted in 2006. Alcohol is permitted in designated tailgate areas but not picnic areas.