GLENDALE, Ariz. - We probably shouldn't expect too much angst between Oregon and Kansas State fans. This is the first meeting between the schools, there's no geographic rivalry, ducks and wildcats aren't known enemies in the wild - nothing that would cause much issue.
Thus, there is a lot of love in the parking lots surrounding University of Phoenix Stadium before this game. So, of course we get guy Kansas State fan dressed as Santa Claus happily taking pictures with four Oregon fans with sombreros and maracas.
Let the good times roll. The Purple Santa, one of the more random get-ups you'll find from a fan, drew plenty of double takes even when he wasn't with the Fiesta Ducks.
There doesn't seem to be more purple out among the crowd than florescent yellow; both fan bases showed out pretty equally. Not that it's the toughest ticket in the world - one scalper was willing to sell upper-deck tickets for $10 or $20, depending on what you wanted - but it's a crowd that's happy to be here.
Here's more of the scene:
Even this guy taunting Kansas State's band in the parking lot as it marched through the parking lots followed up by wishing luck to all of the Wildcats fans nearby. It's not exactly a Chargers-Raiders vibe among the fans today.
On another aside, the band must have walked through the entire greater Phoenix area and they were still going strong more than an hour later. If Bill Snyder needs the tuba player in the fourth quarter, he'll be ready. Impressive showing.
Nothing says NCAA quite like selling an unpaid player's jersey for $30 at the official souvenir stand outside.
One thing is for certain - Oregon fans stand out a lot more. There's only so much you can do with purple.
After all, the guy wearing these socks (with the Nikes - of course the Nikes) is gonna stand out, until he blows out your retinas.
Looks fun, I suppose, but ...
Who let this kid in????? Good thing these fan bases are so friendly. You know this act of rebellion is killing his parents.
Seriously, does anyone know who the sponsor of this game is? Just wish they advertised it a bit more.
There are bags of Tostitos-brand chips everywhere you go at the media hotel as well. Disappointed this game isn't sponsored by a beer company.
The statue of U.S. Army Specialist Pat Tillman outside the stadium. A big salute.
This is a great venue for what should be a really good football game. Enjoy Oregon-Kansas State everyone.
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