UofL campus buzzing over the return of College GameDay - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

UofL campus buzzing over the return of College GameDay

College GameDay was broadcast outside Papa John's Cardinal Stadium on Sept. 17, 2016. (Source: WAVE 3 News Archives) College GameDay was broadcast outside Papa John's Cardinal Stadium on Sept. 17, 2016. (Source: WAVE 3 News Archives)
This year's broadcast will happen on the lawn in front of  Grawemeyer Hall. (Source: Steven Richard, WAVE 3 News) This year's broadcast will happen on the lawn in front of Grawemeyer Hall. (Source: Steven Richard, WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - There's excitement on the University of Louisville campus as the team, students and fans get ready for their second season in a row of hosting ESPN's College GameDay.

The matchup also has a new prime time slot with kickoff at  8:12 p.m. Saturday. The later game time is a big win for some of Louisville's top attractions like Churchill Downs, as fans of the reigning national champions have proven to travel well. 

"Obviously looking forward to Saturday," said Bobby Petrino, the Cardinals head coach. "It should be fun and an exciting time for us with GameDay coming back again. " 

Petrino said the visit by College GameDay last season was "a real special time for our players, coaches, families and fans." 

Huge crowds of Cardinal fans lined up early for College GameDay last season and they delivered with big numbers before the Cards hosted and stunned Florida State 63-20 at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium. 

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"It's a tribute to our program and what Coach Petrino's done really to have Gameday back to back years," said Kenny Klein, the UofL Sports Information Director, of the show's return. 

Set up for the show, which airs Saturday between from 9 a.m. to Noon, Eastern Time, will likely start Wednesday night in the oval in front of Grawemeyer Hall. 

"They (GameDay Producers) scout the area and they prefer to have them (show hosts) on our campus." 

Klein added the difference in the Florida State matchup was the noon start. "Last year, was a little different situation because we were leading right into the game, so they needed to be on site." 

Because Hurricane Irma led to a change in this year's Florida State-Miami game, the Louisville-Clemson contest was able to take over the prime 8 p.m. spot. The time change makes for happy folks at Churchill Downs. The September meet opens Friday, and Saturday's racing begins at 12:45 p.m. That allows visiting Clemson fans and Louisville fans plenty of time to spend their money at the track before walking over to the game. 

UofL students already excited to host their ACC rival are equally pumped for the Cards blackout and second appearance on the popular show two years running. 

"It's huge," said Mason Sturdivant, a UofL student. "I'm a big football fan, played in high school, I'm hyped and I'm ready to come out and have a good time." 

Fans who loved seeing Lee Corso, a former Cardinals head coach, in the house and Louisville game picker Laila Ali, are already guessing who may be taking the Louisville celebrity seat this year. Among the top choices are Jennifer Lawrence, Teddy Bridgewater, Tom Jackson, Justin Thomas and Bryson Tiller. 

For Sturdivant, Bryson Tiller was the choice ... and he may be right. Tiller is playing a concert in Louisville Saturday night, so he could certainly make a College GameDay appearance that morning.

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