Syracuse, N.Y. — The countdown to LSU’s invasion of Central New York is on. And when the charter flight departs Baton Rouge at noon and touches down at Hancock International Airport at 4 p.m. Thursday, the party officially begins.
Jason Ramezan, vice president of the LSU Alumni Association, estimated 7,500 LSU fans will descend on Syracuse this weekend, pulling from east coast-based alumni chapters in New York, Boston and Washington DC.
About 300 alumni and supporters will take the charter flight from Baton Rouge, spend three nights at Turning Stone, take a Friday trip to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, rent out space at the OnCenter for a Saturday morning breakfast/brunch, head to the Carrier Dome and return to Turning Stone for, perhaps, a postgame celebration.
Ramezan gave his warning Monday morning by phone from his office in Louisiana. LSU is coming. And it plans to drink this town dry.
Bloody Mary’s, mimosas and screwdrivers in the morning at the OnCenter, site of the pregame tailgate for traveling alumni.
“I’ve gone places in the past where they’ve run out (of alcohol),” Ramezan said.
Bourbon, Crown Royal, cranberry vodkas and beer during the tailgating at Skytop.
And, yes, Ramezan was aware of the beer and wine sales at the Carrier Dome.
“They might meet their alcohol budget for the year,” he said.
Three weeks after the home-and-home series officially became contracted and announced, Ramezan’s travel package sold out.
“It’s really unheard of,” he said. “We could’ve sold another plane,” but lack of hotel accommodations prevented that from happening.
LSU sold out its 5,000-ticket allotment through Syracuse. An additional 200 tickets for the alumni group were requested and granted through Syracuse.
Ramezan visited last October and toured the campus and the surrounding region to best plan for the influx of Tigers fans this fall.
“Tailgating at LSU is a science and it’s a religion, and in the fall,” he said, “it’s almost better than the game.
“When we went up there we said, ‘Oh this is going to be interesting. There is not a lot of space.’ ” Ramezan said many LSU fans will motor their RVs into the Skytop lot to set up tailgating headquarters.
“It’ll be different,” he said.
And this, my friends, is the SEC difference. The Vice President of the LSU Alumni Association going on record with his #1 major concern: that Syracuse won’t have enough liquor for them this weekend. Forget accommodations, hotel space, travel around the city, activities, safety. Blah blah blah. All that shit will work itself out. First and foremost: do you have enough booze for us or what? Can you get us hammered drunk enough? Are we going to run out of Crown and Buds and Bloody Mary Mix hours before kickoff? Because if so we’ll rip this home-and-home contract up right where we stand, swear to God.
And who am I or anyone in the New York area to argue with them. We do a lot, a lottttt of stuff better up here in the Northeast, but if there’s one thing that the South whoops our ass in, it’s college football and more specifically college football tailgating*.
Should be a fun weekend and should end up with some good blog material – you really can’t dream up a more odd-couple scenario than the SEC fans from Louisiana driving their RVs into the sleepy town chock full of Northeastern assholes in Syracuse, New York.
*#BillsMafia being the honorable exception.