Va. Tech limits student attendance at football games following ’embarrassing student behavior’

National

BLACKSBURG, Va. (WFXR) –Following reports about inappropriate student behavior at Virginia Tech home football games, university officials announced a number of new policies — including a limit on student attendance — that will go into effect for upcoming games at Lane Stadium.

According to a statement released by the university on Thursday, Oct. 14, only student season ticket holders and a limited number of student lottery winners will be allowed to go to the home game on Saturday, Oct. 16 and all future home games.

In addition, the Virginia Tech Police Department urges every student who attends these football games at Lane Stadium to take personal responsibility for a safe and positive fan experience that reflects the best of the Blacksburg community.

The department also shared the following actions that will be taken at home football games moving forward:

  • Law enforcement officers and security personnel will be deployed in Lane Stadium.
  • New guidance will be enforced for student gate entry.
  • Violators of the student code of conduct will face significant consequences and are subject to a ban from Virginia Tech athletic facilities

You can read the full statement released by Virginia Tech on Thursday, Oct. 14 below:

Dear Virginia Tech students,

Fall means football in Blacksburg. Nothing matches the excitement of being in Lane Stadium to jump and cheer together in support of our Hokies. This unique, thrilling experience doesn’t happen on its own. We depend on our incredible stadium staff and public safety personnel to move tens of thousands of people safely and efficiently in and out of Lane Stadium and take great care of us while we’re there so we can enjoy the game. This only works when we demonstrate patience, mutual respect for those around us, and full cooperation with guidance and protocols.

It troubles us to write this message because of the high regard we hold for our students and the joy, curiosity, and excellence with which you embrace your education every day. Over the last several weeks, we have heard too many stories of selfish, inappropriate, and embarrassing student behavior at home football games. What we have heard falls short of Virginia Tech standards – and most importantly, creates an unsafe environment for all who attend.

This week, we are asking that every student attending this Saturday’s home game (and all future games) take personal responsibility for a safe and positive fan experience that reflects the best of our community.

So, let’s get it right this Saturday against Pitt and for the rest of the season. Starting this week, together we will be taking the following actions:

— Student attendance will be restricted to season ticket holders and a more limited number of student lottery winners.
— Students are expected to follow all new guidance for gate entry.
— Students will be expected to move to seats above the portals immediately to allow for all fans to take their seats safely and quickly.
— Virginia Tech Police Department will deploy law enforcement officers and security personnel in Lane Stadium to support a positive and safe fan experience.
— Students entering the game illegally or who violate line protocols will be referred to Student Conduct. Students who violate our Student Code of Conduct risk significant consequences.  
— In addition, violators will be subject to ban from Virginia Tech athletic facilities by the police department.

Virginia Tech is such a strong, vibrant community guided by our Principles of Community, which are always on display at our home football games in the fall. This year especially, we have so much to be proud of with being back on campus and in the full swing of the semester. But this is one area where we haven’t brought our best. Let’s change that starting Saturday and remind our community that we know and honor what it means to be a Hokie.

Statement from Whit Babcock, director of athletics; Frank Shushok Jr., vice president of student affairs; and Police Chief Mac Babb with the Virginia Tech Police Department from Oct. 14, 2021

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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