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Arizona expecting ‘reduced capacity’ at football games in 2020

Washington v Arizona Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The Arizona Wildcats have a new conference-only football schedule that includes a home opener against the Arizona State Sun Devils—what a world!—but it remains to be seen how many, if any, fans will be allowed into Arizona Stadium to take it all in.

That will be determined by the UA at a later date with advice from local, state and federal health officials.

However, season ticket holders were notified by email Friday that although an official decision has not been made, the UA expects to have “reduced capacity” to begin the season.

The email also said tailgating and other fan amenities may be unavailable, though the hope is to increase them, and capacity, as the season progresses.

Arizona’s revised schedule calls for them to have five home games: Sept. 26 vs. ASU, Oct. 10 vs. Colorado, Oct. 24 vs. USC, Nov. 14 vs. Cal, and Nov. 20 vs. Oregon.

What does “reduced capacity” mean?

Well, UA athletic director Dave Heeke said on the radio last week that even 50 percent capacity could be a stretch at this point since the state of Arizona has been a major coronavirus hotspot since late June.

“Lots of social distancing, lots of procedures and protocols,” Heeke said in an interview with Eye on the Ball. “When we think about food service, and we think about parking, we think about tailgating, all of those things are going to be modified dramatically. It’s going to be a much different experience, but we do hope we can have an experience where people can come and at least support the team and watch the team and be part of it.”