LEXINGTON, Ky. — More than 5,000 tickets are still available for Saturday night’s matchup between Kentucky and Georgia in Commonwealth Stadium.
Coach Mark Stoops called on fans to fill the stadium in what could be a game to keep the Wildcats in SEC East contention. Kentucky athletic director Mitch Barnhart knows some are still waiting to see if the Wildcats success is legitimate.
While Barnhart is thankful to the core who show up on fall Saturdays, he knows others are in ‘wait and see’ mode.
“I think for Saturday night, for us to have a full house, for us to have close to a full house, I’m sure there’s still folks on the outside who are saying ‘Hey, we’re still waiting to see. Are we for real? We’re not quite totally vested in it yet.’”
As of 2 p.m. Wednesday, 55,600 tickets had been allotted, according to a UK spokesperson. A capacity crowd at Commonwealth Stadium would check in around 61,000.
Kentucky is trying to recharge its fanbase after a stretch of losing seasons — even after an 0-2 start this year.
“Our fans, they’ve got a right to change the way they think,” Barnhart said. “It’s part of the deal. In the microwave society we’re in, there’s no mystery that sometimes the ebb and the flow, if you ride that wave too hard, you’re going to have a hard time living. So you try to be steady in that. Steadying the storm.
Barnhart said Saturday is heading toward Kentucky’s first sellout of the season.
The celebration could be sweet for a Wildcats fan base that could watch Kentucky clinch its first bowl bid since 2010. Barnhart said he hopes fans can sing and dance at the end of the night.
“I won’t dance, but I’d like to sing,” Barnhart said.