The No. 3 Syracuse Orange are hopeful that a record-setting crowd of 33,000-plus fans will pack the Carrier Dome Saturday afternoon as SU hosts No. 7 Villanova Wildcats in a Big East Conference game (noon ET on ESPN). Last season against Villanova, the 49,262-capacity domed stadium set an NCAA on-campus record of 34,616. On that day, the Orange won 95-77 over the Wildcats, earning a school-record 27th regular season victory and a share of the Big East regular season title. The previous on-campus record was also set by Syracuse against Villanova in 2005-'06.
Earlier in the week, Syracuse University launched the "Long-Ranger" promotion that encouraged fans to buy long-range view seats, basically making 6-foot-10 players look like ants. However, for $35 ($12 for kids under 12-years-old) fans get a free t-shirt that says, "I Am A Long Ranger", and a video board so fans don't miss any of the action.
Because of the overflow of fans, SU opened the Carrier Dome earlier than normal (10 a.m. ET) and encouraged anyone, who was attending the game, to come much earlier than normal. The dome Box Office was going to open at 9 a.m. but it wouldn't matter because SU students were camping out for tickets at the beginning of the week!
According to SUAthletics.com, SU is 46-22 in games played with 30,000 or more fans and 5-1 with crowds of 33,000 or larger.