DeSantis says teams can pack stadiums with fans, but many have not taken up offer

Published: October 8, 2020 5:01 PM EDT
Updated: October 8, 2020 8:14 PM EDT

The governor gave the go-ahead for fans to pack Florida stadiums, so we looked at whether high schools in Southwest Florida will follow suit now that teams are back on the field.

So far, none of Florida’s NFL teams have taken Gov. Ron DeSantis up on his offer for their stadiums to be filled with fans in the stands.

The same is true with for the Florida Gators at UF. The Gators didn’t sell out its 17,000 tickets last Saturday. The FSU Seminoles, UCF Knights and Miami Hurricanes all respectively don’t plan to sell every ticket either.

In Southwest Florida, it seems to be the same answer.

“The best bet is to keep our kids safe and our fans as well and to follow guidelines set out by our district,” said Isabell Gallegos, the director of operations for Immokalee High School.

Collier County Public Schools allows home and visiting parents to attend games. Lee County allows 25% capacity.

Fewer fans at games means less money for high school teams to bank on.

“Not having a full stadium does affect our fundraising as far as ticket sales and concessions gate and the parking,” Gallegos said. “Aall that ties in together that allows us to have a little more money to support our program.”

For now, these players will play on and then tell their friends all about it.

“We would all love to have a full stadium,” Gallegos said. “Right now is not the time for that.”