NORMAN — The whole town’s a party site with fans from across the nation descending on Norman. If only the presidential candidates had the sense to realize it, they should have been campaigning in Oklahoma this weekend.
The University of Oklahoma campus was already edging into a pre-game frenzy of activity Friday afternoon and parties were breaking out all over Campus Corner and in the RV park adjacent to the Lloyd Noble Center, where out-of-town fans from both teams park and tailgate for the weekend.
The excitement-charged atmosphere is more comparable to a national championship-level game than a typical home game.
But this game is different than most home games. It’s Notre Dame vs. the Sooners, and Norman — with the OU campus at the heart of the city — has taken center stage in the nation.
Along with the national media, fans in support of both tradition-rich universities have come from across the U.S, some flying in, others driving hundreds of miles to watch what they believe will be the game of the year.
Lissa and Delbert Galusha, Sooner fans from Illinois, said it was worth the 600-mile drive. They planned to watch the OU women’s basketball scrimmage Friday night at the Lloyd Noble Center. Their RV is parked in the Lloyd Noble parking lot.
“We’ve just met so many nice people,” Lissa Galusha said.
“I think this is the game of the century,” Delbert Galusha said.
A crimson car with New Mexico’s bright yellow and red license tag seemed coordinated with the OU flag it sports, as it edges along a traffic-filled Lindsey Street.
On campus, university staff covered flowers on the South Oval so they wouldn’t freeze during the night. Everything needs to look great for the 80,000 fans expected to descend on campus today.