AD Rick Hart Warns Against Lack of Masks by Fans, Urges Adjustment of Behavior
SMU Football hosted Stephen F. Austin for its first home game of the season last weekend. The Mustangs beat the Lumberjacks 50-7 in front of a sold-out crowd at Ford Stadium.
The crowd, limited in size due to capacity restrictions, was asked to uphold COVID-related guidelines and the “Pledge to Protect,” set up by SMU Athletics, including maintaining social distance policies, wearing a mask, and using the designated stadium entrances and exits.
In a letter sent earlier this week, Athletic Director Rick Hart noted that though most fans followed the guidelines, some did not.
“We will be working to adjust the behavior of a small subsection of fans who did not follow our pledge to protect, which was sent to all ticketholders,” Hart said in the letter.
In order to adjust that behavior, Hart said SMU will be more strictly enforcing guidelines at games, and that any student found in violation of the pledge will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards.
“Security personnel will also be significantly increased throughout the stadium to make sure that we can get the right people in the right seats, checking tickets and directing fans,” Hart said. “We will add additional student-specific signage with safety reminders to that area as well to reinforce our masking and distancing message.”
SMU will be hosting American Athletic Conference rival, and No. 25 ranked, Memphis this Saturday. Last season, the Tigers handed SMU its first loss at Memphis.