OU fans are trading tailgating for more sleep

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NORMAN, Okla.- It's all about tailgating on game day usually, but with the early kick off time many are skipping the tents and lawn chairs for a little more sleep.

"It's pretty much cook breakfast and then go to the game,” OU Fan Jeremy Lewis said.

Many OU fans will be trading in the typical hot dogs for hash browns, beer for bloody Marys and burgers for biscuits because of the 11 a.m. kick off against Baylor in Norman on Saturday.

"Just getting up, getting down there at 5 o’ clock in the morning, setting everything up just for a few hours.

That’s the reason sooner fan Jeremy Lewis and his family won’t be tailgating Saturday.

"It's just not as fun as even a 2:30 game."

And Balfour on Campus Corner says their profits take a big hit with the early game time.

"We see anywhere from 30% to 40% of difference in business when it's an 11 o’clock kick off versus a 6 o’ clock or 7 o’ clock kick off and that's just because there's just not as many people down here," Owner of Balfour of Norman, Jerry Hatter said.

It even hurts after the game.

“The other thing is with an 11 O’ clock game [is] You've got people from out-of-town, there's still time for them to get home so they'll just head out to get home at a decent hour," Hatter said.

Jeff Stewart is the manager of O'Connell's Irish Pub and sees a big crowd during early games because he opens his doors early.

"It started some time ago with Kansas State that had called down and was looking for a place to meet with fans early in the morning and since then it's just happened every game day that we start early," Stewart said.

On early game days, O'Connell's opens between 7:30 and 8a.m., catering to the breakfast crowd, but while that may help, some fans prefer a later kick off.

"It's just takes away from the atmosphere of what tailgating is," Lewis said.


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