This year’s football season represents much more than all others before it: a return home.
Last year, due to the renovations in progress on Memorial Stadium, the home football games were held at the Giants’ own AT&T Park in San Francisco. Despite the scenic waterfront location, many Cal students had mixed feelings about the logistics of traveling to a venue across the bay. To help smooth over the inconvenience, all student season-pass holders were issued paid BART tickets to get them to the stadium and back, but for some this was not enough.
“Our BART tickets were (compensated), but it was still an issue getting there,” said UC Berkeley junior Alicia Zhu.
“It would be cold, and we’d have to walk additional blocks to get back from the stadium late at night,” said sophmore Favio Tello. “Going to games was more of a hassle than exciting,” said sophomore Favio Tello.
Despite the negative aspects of the games being at AT&T — which included a lengthy BART ride, walk and journey back — others admitted that there was a silver lining to taking the trip. “It was nice to have an excuse to go out and see the city with friends but still inconvenient,” said sophomore Cole Satterfield.
The time it took to attend a game last year was one of the major issues. Students recalled having to set aside almost an entire day in order to take BART to get to the ballpark in time for the game.
Other problems with the temporary location involved the complex set-up required to house a football field on a baseball diamond. Large sets of bleachers were situated in what would normally be the Giants’ right and center field. There was no 50-yard line view for students as the student section occupied left field, an area that was not large enough to handle the normal student turnout for games at Memorial Stadium.
“There weren’t as many seats (at AT&T), so there weren’t as many students,” Zhu said. But she also noted that this ended up being somewhat of a pro for the ballpark stadium. “The students that did go were more dedicated, so it was more exciting.”
The overall ruling appeared to be unanimous; having the games back home at Memorial Stadium is much more convenient, efficient and worthwhile all around.
“It’s nice having the games back home, being surrounded by Cal fans,” Zhu said. “The general atmosphere is better.”
Contact Ryan Koehn at [email protected].