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Ohio State limits stadium capacity to 20 percent, eliminates tailgating

The Ohio State football program has announced that it will only allow 20 percent of Ohio Stadium's capacity at games during the 2020 season.

As the 2020 college football season approaches, questions remain regarding what games will look like amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

On Tuesday, one of the sport's biggest programs provided some answers, with Ohio State announcing that it will only allow 20 percent of Ohio Stadium to be filled and the elimination of tailgating and pregame skull session pep rallies.

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The Ohio State Athletic Department made the announcement in a letter to season ticket holders, which reads as follows:

"While no final decision has been made regarding the 2020 football season, the Department of Athletics has been working diligently with university leaders, public health experts and government officials to create game day plans that protect the health, safety and well-being of our student-athletes, staff, faculty and fans. 

"In order to provide the safest environment, certain measures will need to be implemented at Ohio Stadium this year, including physical distancing, mandatory masks/facial coverings, limited concessions, no tailgating and no skull session at St. John Arena. These measures will result in a reduced crowd capacity of no more than 20 percent of overall stadium capacity and will impact all ticket holder constituencies in both overall ticket quantity and seat location."

Due to health and safety concerns, Ohio State will also allow season ticket holders to opt of this year's season. 

Those who do opt-out will retain their consecutive years of purchase, their full season ticket eligibility and will still be able to participate in the planned reseating of Ohio Stadium. 

Anyone who opts out will have the option to receive a refund for their tickets, a credit toward a future ticket purchase or donate their ticket payments to support student-athlete scholarships.

Earlier this month, the Big Ten announced that it would be moving to a conference-only schedule for 2020. Speaking to reporters on a conference call, Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith admitted he was worried the 2020 season may not take place due to the coronavirus pandemic.

"I am very concerned," Smith said. "I used to be cautiously optimistic but I’m not even there now."

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