UNIVERSITY PARK - Penn State's 2012 season-opener on Saturday will not be a sellout.
Greg Myford, associate athletic director for business relations and communications, confirmed late last week, "There are about 10,000 tickets remaining" for the Nittany Lions' game with Ohio University. Kickoff is set for noon.
He also said the availability is similar to the number of tickets sold for last year's opener with Indiana State.
"We still have a week before we take the field," Myford said. "We are looking to close the gap. We are down about 2,500 season tickets. We will have a good crowd. There is a lot of enthusiasm for this first game. It is safe to say everyone is anticipating the opportunity for this team to get back on the field."
Some minor parking changes will be in place.
The overnight RV parking lot has been expanded by approximately 140 spaces. Parking Lot 13 along Park Avenue, which was not available last season because of construction of new intramural fields, will be back in use. Lot 21 along Park Avenue will not be in use this season because of construction, said Mark Bodenschatz, associate athletic director for facilities and operations.
Penn State has discussed added changes in security to make sure its fans and athletes are safe, in light of the Jerry Sandusky scandal and all the national fallout that has accompanied it over the past nine months.
"Security is always our first and foremost focus with a stadium the size of ours," Myford said. "We are constantly looking at things in terms of security. Part of the process in increasing security is being able to do it in a way that is not public."
Penn State is not planning anything special for the season opener in terms of showing support for child abuse victims but will hold a "Blue Out" Sept. 22 when Temple comes to Beaver Stadium.
"That ties in with the color of our jerseys and the color of the ribbon that recognizes child abuse. The university and administration is working with a student group called 'One Heart' and the Pennsylvania Coalition of Rape in trying to raise money and awareness," Myford said.
The Nittany Lions will wear blue ribbons on their helmets this season.
"At the end of the day for us in athletics, we never want to lose sight of why we come to work every day - that is because of the 800-plus student athletes that wear our blue and white," Myford said. "This team has already shown they are a special bunch of young men by making their commitment to Penn State, and all of us should be there and let them see us and hear us."
For the first time, Beaver Stadium will be totally Wi-Fi-accessible. Myford said there will also be a gameday app that fans will be able to use to get information about the game and view replays.
Credit cards will also be accepted at concession stands for the first time this season.
Tickets can be purchased by calling 800-NITTANY or by visiting GoPSUsports.com/tickets.
Mirror Staff Writer Walt Frank is at 946-7467.