Public safety forces prepare for first Big 12 home game in Morgantown

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Public safety workers in the Monongalia County area are ready for the third consecutive weekend of West Virginia University (WVU) gameday traffic. The Mountaineers will kick off against Big 12 rival Texas Tech at 3:30 p.m. Saturday in Milan Puskar Stadium.

Morgantown Police Chief Eric Powell said the first two weekends went very smoothly with no major problems. In fact, he said the 106th backyard brawl played in Morgantown last weekend was exceptional.

“We had a really huge turnout last week, and we were pleasantly surprised at the aftermath of the game,” Powell said. “I thought everything went really well, and we didn’t have a super-high volume of calls.”

Powell said the team of agencies providing traffic control and on-site security has been working WVU football games for many years, and the process is ingrained in the officers.

“In cooperation with other agencies, WVU Police Department, West Virginia State Police, and Monongalia County Sheriff’s Department, we all come together to make as smooth and uneventful as we possibly can,” Powell said.

Powell said fans have done a good job of staying out of trouble for the first two weekends. But as a reminder, allow plenty of time for travel, be patient, be a good sport, and do not drink or drive.

“We discourage people from consuming alcohol and getting behind the wheel,” Powell said. “Have a responsible person to drive you home and get you there, and your behavior in the stadium is a concern to us.”

Powell said the last two exits from the stadium have been very smooth, and with a slightly earlier kick off, he expects that to continue.

“There’s plenty of time to get home and plenty of time to get where you’re going; just be patient,” Powell said. “It ought to be a fun time for everybody.”