After reaching the College Football Playoff in the 2016-17 season, the Ohio State football team and coach Urban Meyer are looking for more ways to engage students. On April 8, the Buckeyes will be holding the annual Student Appreciation Day inside the Woody Hayes Athletics Complex, from noon to 2 p.m., during the Sibs and Kids Weekend at OSU.
This year, OSU said it is looking to create a more engaging and dynamic experience for fans and students. On top of watching the standard practice and being allowed a short period to meet their favorite players, students will get a “more up-close look” at the team and the practice facilities.
“I just love to (do) anything to keep the students going,” Meyer said during a meeting with The Lantern and members of Greek Life and Student Life. “Let them know that it’s their team.”
There are plans for a DJ, in addition to free subs and ice cream sandwiches provided by Meijer, along with water bottles with gift cards enclosed. There is the possibility of a giveaway to a select number of the first students in attendance, although more details should arise closer to the event.
There will be competitions held after practice has concluded such as the fastest student event, along with designated areas where students can have their picture taken with the national championship trophy and Brutus. Students can also have their picture taken with band equipment and football gear like shoulder pads and helmets.
An expected Snapchat filter and hashtag will be implemented closer to the date of the event, and students will be chosen at random from a to-be-determined Twitter hashtag to win prizes.
Last year, OSU’s Student Appreciation Day drew an estimated 2,500 students to the team’s practice facility, where all in attendance watched an hourlong scrimmage. Free food was provided, and a fastest student competition was held.
OSU said it’s hoping for a much larger turnout this year, and is looking to give students a chance to feel like a football player for a day, while competing for prizes from the university.
A previous version of this story stated 11 a.m. as the start time for the event.