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West Virginia allows beer sales in stadium, sober patrons cower in fear

Graham Watson
Dr. Saturday

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WVU_fans


Somewhere West Virginia offensive coordinator Dana Holgorsen is raising a glass after West Virginia University's Board of Governors voted 10-5 to allow beer sales at sporting events on campus beginning with football games this fall.

That's right, one of the scariest stadiums to be in just got a lot scarier.

In addition to adding beer sales, which will cease during the third quarter of games, the school will also do away with smoking in public areas of the stadium and allowing in-and-out privileges, which will stop people from going to their tailgates to get more liquor.

While the overwhelming reason to add beer sales is the additional revenue it will provide the university, athletic director Oliver Luck said allowing beer sales inside the stadium would provide for a calmer environment.

"I believe we have taken a step forward toward our goal of a safer, friendlier and more civil game day experience," Luck said in a statement released by the school.
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The university will have controlled sales and each buyer will have to present a valid ID showing they're of legal drinking age. Beer will be sold in plastic bottles to alleviate spillage and patrons would be able to only buy two beers at a time. Also, no beer vendors will circulate in the stands and there are no sales in the student section.

The school also plans to add extra security and staffing for gameday and is in the process of adding better cell phone coverage and will encourage fans to text a helpline when consumers get a little rowdy.

While Luck, the board and WVU's offensive coordinator (see because he's been linked to several alcohol-related incidents) might be on board with this plan, the season ticket holders might take some convincing.  During an informal comment period encouraged by the board of directors, the majority of 326 commenters opposed the measure. Some said if the measure was approved they would stop coming to games, cancel season tickets and even suspend donations.

It will be interesting to see how many people actually follow through on that and how many were using it as a scare tactic.

Either way, it didn't seem like the idle threats of fans were enough to stop alcoholic progress.

West Virginia now joins 20 other college venues that offer beer sales. For the most part, the practice has been positive. We'll see if West Virginia continues that trend.

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