My Experience at College GameDay Pullman

This past weekend, ESPN made history as it came to Pullman for College Gameday for the first time. The show has been airing since 1987 and consists of a three-hour program that talks about the upcoming games for the day in college football. The show starts three hours prior to the first kickoff which is typically around 12 PM EST. It includes predictions for the games as well as featured stories for the week. The main story this week was of Ol Crimson and it’s 15-year journey back home.

The set up in Pullman started midweek with the trucks arriving on Wednesday afternoon with a welcoming party of students, faculty, alumni and all fans of Cougar football. Unfortunately, I was in class, so I missed out on welcoming the bus. The set up for Gameday continued until Friday when people began lining up on the corner in order to get into the pit (the fenced in area closest to the stage) which meant being on TV. I am glad to say I was part of a group which camped out the night before and was able to get near the front of the pit. I have some friends who had started around 4:30 PM Friday and later that night they invited my roommate and I to join them, so we went over around 10. For 6 hours, we stood on the corner, passed around a football and waited to be let into the pit. They began letting us in around 4:30 and then we had to continue standing there until the start of the show at 6 AM PST. Once we got into the pit, it got very crowded, very fast. There were people trying to get around us to get to the front and people on other shoulders and people waving their signs in order to get theirs on TV. The entire event was intense but completely worth it. We also got a couple goodies for being in the pit, like a Home Depot hard hat and Home Depot football gloves which are really cool momentous to look back on that day. One of the best parts happened before the show started. Host Rece Davis got on stage and said, “Pullman I have two words for you… HOLY SHIT!” That alone brought back the excitement and showed us why were had been standing there for 8+ hours.

Once Gameday started, it calmed down in the pit a little bit because people were actually listening to the show which was really nice. I ended up only staying until 7 because I needed to sleep before the big game at 4:30. Honestly, Gameday was an amazing experience and to be able to experience it at my college was so memorable.

Fast forward to the actual game, it was intense to say the least. There was a whole new energy in the stadium with the sold-out seats and the Gameday hype. Thankfully, we were able to get pretty good seats on the ten-yard line about 6 rows from the field. We could see the game clearly and we really got involved in the student section. The first half of the game was great as it ended with WSU being up 27-0 against Oregon. Third quarter was a little more stressful though because Oregon ended up scoring 17 points so going into the fourth quarter, they were only 10 points behind. They then scored a field goal which brought the score to 27-20 with Wazzu still up. In the last 4 minutes of the game, Minshew threw a 40-yard pass to add a touchdown to the score and with an extra point, brought the score to 34. This touchdown seemed to seal the deal because at this point, there were people coming down close to the field because we were going to storm the field. WSU had possession the last minute and ended up kneeing the ball and avoiding play. At this point, people started jumping over the stadium fences to get onto the field. This was a slightly scary experience but that feeling was so small compared to the overall feeling of pride and excitement. Being on the field felt great because I was apart of the fanbase of the WSU Cougars.