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Reasons BYU Football Fans Should Be Excited For LES Returning To Full Capacity

PROVO, UT - OCTOBER 03: Brigham Young Cougars fans cheer during their game against the Utah State Aggies at LaVell Edwards Stadium on October 3, 2014 in Provo, Utah. (Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr/Getty Images )

PROVO, Utah – BYU Football fans can rejoice as full capacity will be allowed at LaVell Edwards Stadium for the 2021 season. It’s a huge milestone that signals that normal life, as we once knew before the pandemic, is quickly returning.

Last year during BYU’s 11-1 season, two home games featured crowds of 6,500 fans. But it was nowhere near the atmosphere of LES when it’s at a capacity crowd of 63,725.

Here are reasons why you should be excited LaVell Edwards Stadium is back to full capacity.

#1 BYU Football in person

We live in an amazing era of technology, and TVs are better than ever. Leaving the 80-plus inch TV is tough, but the trade-off is seeing a sporting event in person. Memories last a lifetime, and if you’re at a game with an amazing finish, it makes the experience of being at the game that much sweeter.

I’m convinced 100,000 BYU fans were in attendance for the Cougars win over No. 1 Miami back in 1990. Being there to witness a live event is special. For the fans to have that taken away last year, I’d expect big turnouts this fall.

#2 Great home schedule

BYU enters year 11 as an FBS Independent. It’s taken a long time, but the value of being an Independent program is finally showing up in the quality of home games the Cougars are putting together. Home dates with rivals Utah and Boise State are expected at this point. Then pair those games with a visit from Pac-12 South contender Arizona State and the return of former BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall and his Virginia Cavaliers; on name value alone, this home schedule is the best since 2011.

#3 New video boards for BYU football fans

 

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The gameday experience is being enhanced for BYU football fans in 2021 and beyond. BYU athletics announced new scoreboards are being installed in both the south and north endzones of the stadium.

#4 Cougar Canyon

One of the disappointing aspects of not having fans during the 2020 football season was no Cougar Canyon. Created by the BYU Marketing team, led by David Almodova, Cougar Canyon was introduced in 2019 and was an immediate success.

On the west side of LaVell Edwards Stadium, located on Canyon Blvd, giveaways, music, food, and other entertainment options lined up Cougar Canyon to give fans some pregame fun before going into the stadium.

BYU did not announce if Cougar Canyon is returning in 2021, but it should. It has the potential to grow into a great tradition for home BYU games, especially with the Cougar Walk lined up in the middle of it all around two and a half hours before kickoff.

#5 Tailgating

Over the past decade, tailgating has made significant strides in the BYU game day experience. During the Independence era, BYU fans have seen their program travel to some of college football’s pregame hotspots, and it’s led to fans returning to Provo to create traditions of their own.

BYU has a tailgate lot for fans to congregate before and after games just off Cougar Blvd and University Ave. It’s a little far, but it’s better than nothing. Go swing through and say hi to die-hard BYU fans Justin Mace, Adrian Jenkins, a.k.a. “BigUnclePooh,” Pierre Guzman, and they’ll show you what tailgating is all about at BYU.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for KSLsports.com and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12-3 pm) on KSL Newsradio. Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.

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