ATHENS, GA — Georgia’s annual spring football game, G-Day, is going to be a special game this year. For the first time in 15 years, Georgia is led by a new head coach, Kirby Smart.
Kirby Smart has big plans for the football program. At Tuesday’s Athletic Association Board Meeting, he said one of his top priorities is to sell out G-Day, a feat that has never been done at Georgia.
A stadium filled to maximum capacity for spring games are very rare. Last year, Georgia reported having a crowd of 46,815, making it the ninth largest spring game in the country. To put that in perspective, Georgia’s crowd would have overfilled Baylor’s McLane Stadium.
Though getting 46,000 at a spring game is quite an accomplishment on the national level, to fill Sanford Stadium, Kirby Smart would need to pull in over 92,000 Bulldog fans for the April 16th spring game.
But crowds like this are possible. Looking at last year’s national spring game attendances, Ohio State was able to bring in 99,391. Ohio State also had some big factors that led to that attendance. Their National Championship in 2015 and the three way battle for Quarterback between Braxton Miller, Cardale Jones, and J.T. Barrett made a lot of excitement in Columbus that lead to the country’s biggest spring game attendance. If Georgia achieves its goal, the Bulldogs will surely have one of the top three the largest spring games in the country.
This year there’s a lot of excitement brewing in Athens. The combination of a new head coach, the early enrollment of top prospects like Isaac Nauta and Julian Rochester, and Georgia’s renewed quarterback battle between 2015 starter Greyson Lambert and newcomer Jacob Eason are sure to draw fans. Georgia is also ranked No. 22 in the way too early rankings, one spot ahead of Miami and former head coach Mark Richt. These factors and more should result in a large turnout for G-Day.
Emily Deitz, Assistant Athletic Director of Promotions, explained the promotions staff is already in the process of creating a strategic marketing plan to promote the G-Day experience to make it bigger and bolder than ever. This will be a big weekend in Georgia sports as Baseball, Softball and Men’s and Women’s Tennis will compete Friday through Sunday.
As usual, G-Day will be free to all that attend and more details are expected to come out March 15th or 16th.
By Brett Homer