Excitement in Boone and on ASU campus about Miami match-up

Published: Sep. 15, 2016 at 1:02 PM EDT|Updated: Sep. 15, 2016 at 7:31 PM EDT
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David Whisenant-WBTV
David Whisenant-WBTV
David Whisenant-WBTV
David Whisenant-WBTV

BOONE, NC (WBTV) - It is one of, if not the most significant college football game ever played in Kidd Brewer Stadium on the campus of Appalachian State University.

"Historically, the opponents in the big games here have always been conference teams," said ASU Athletic Director Doug Gillin.  "But this is what takes this program to the next step, an ACC, Power 5 team, and not only that, it's the Miami Hurricanes.

The game is at noon on Saturday and will be televised by ESPN.

Students on campus are looking forward to the game.

"Everyone I know is going to the game, everyone is getting up at like 9 am, tailgating in the fields, everyone is getting ready," said Nick Denbleyker, a junior from Raleigh. "I've got like friends from ECU who are interested in coming up here, even people who don't go here are texting me about it. It's going to be like extremely busy, I mean stay off the roads if you're not about the game. I don't think we're ready for how many people are going to be excited for this game."

It's a milestone for the Mountaineers to have such a team coming to Boone.  In the past ASU has played and beaten larger schools, such as East Carolina, Wake Forest, South Carolina, and nationally ranked Michigan in 2007, but those games have always been on the road.

The Miami game sold out soon after tickets went on sale, according to Gillin, and he's heard that tickets are being advertised for as much as $800.

"Hey, when did you think that you would go on the secondary ticket market and see our tickets selling for as much as $800, or at least listed," Gillin added. "I don't know if they're selling for that, but a couple weeks ago there were tickets listed for this game from $800 all the way down to $180.  It's a $60 face value ticket."

Extra seats have been placed in Kidd Brewer, and other accommodations are being made to allow more fans to enjoy the game.

In downtown Boone, shopkeepers and restaurant owners say this weekend could be one of the biggest that they've ever had.

"It's great for the local economy.  Football season around here is super exciting, it's always good but when you get a team like Miami in Boone, that's pretty crazy, yeah," said Steve Presnell of High Country Souvenirs. "We're expecting probably our biggest day of the year so far."

"It helps grow our university brand, and it's really good for our town, our community, Appalachian fans, so it's really exciting," Gillin added.

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