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Ohio State promotion surrounding football’s spring game weekend sparks national interest

Busy weekends are nothing new to Ohio State athletics. With 36 varsity sports teams, one can walk through campus and stumble upon any event at any given time.

With no less than 10 Buckeye squads in action at home this weekend, Ohio State decided to deem April 18-20 “Scarlet and Gray Days,” highlighting events in baseball, men’s lacrosse, spring football and softball. The gist: attempt to set attendance records in each of the four sports.

The promotion has caught wind and several national and local media outlets have written stories about Ohio State’s aim to prove it has “The Best Fans in the Land,” a phrase coined several years ago from Ohio State’s marching band’s claim to being “The Best Damn Band in the Land.”   

From a story in USA Today Thursday to a Monday mention in an ESPN.com article on the spring game craze that hits college football fans each April, “Scarlet and Gray Days” has received media attention across the nation. (links to stories provided above)

The buzz, whether positive or negative, also has been established locally with various Columbus outlets showing interest as well as nearby cities like Dayton and Toledo devoting print space.

Baseball starts the weekend vs. Purdue at 6:35 p.m. Friday at Bill Davis Stadium. It is fireworks night and the target attendance to surpass is 5,360, set in 2002.

Saturday, men’s lacrosse steps onto the turf in Ohio Stadium normally reserved for the football team. At 11 a.m., the Buckeyes, coming off a recent upset win over North Carolina, line up against Denver not only looking to continue a win streak, but shatter the national attendance record. That mark of 52,004 was established last season at the NCAA semifinals in Baltimore, Md.

Also Saturday, football’s quest is to best the impressive crowds that have filed into The Horseshoe at each of the last two spring games. The event drew more than 63,000 in 2006 and topped 75,000 last year.

Sunday, it is softball’s turn vs. Penn State. The defending Big Ten champs hope to top a total of 1,175 set last season against Cal State-Fullerton in the NCAA tournament. The doubleheader starts at noon at Buckeye Field.

Fans interested in “Scarlet and Gray Days” ticket information can call the Ohio State athletics ticket office at 1-800-GO-BUCKS or visit www.OhioStateBuckeyes.com.