FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — When the Arkansas Razorbacks football team takes the field Saturday against the Ole Miss Rebels, there will be a special group of students in the stands cheering them to victory.
One hundred eight Arkansas students are traveling to Oxford, Miss., as part of a trip called “Rollin with the Razorbacks,” sponsored by the Associated Student Government in conjunction with the Arkansas Athletic Department.
The Ole Miss game was chosen for the trip based on its proximity to Northwest Arkansas, which allowed for convenient travel arrangements.
“A lot of students don’t have the opportunity to travel to away games for only $20,” said Chris Arnold, ASG’s director of athletic relations. “Students were very excited about this. The trip filled very quickly, and I think it is because students are excited about Razorback football and they are excited about seeing the Razorbacks at an away game because that is not something that a lot of students are able to do.”
The idea is not a new one — similar trips have taken place in previous years — but this year’s is significant after the cancellation of a similar plan last season. Due in large part to an enhanced ongoing dialogue between the athletic department and student leaders, Arkansas Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics Jeff Long doubled Razorback Athletics’ financial commitment to ASG for the current school year to fund various activities including Rollin with the Razorbacks.
The athletic department donated game tickets for each student this weekend, which significantly decreased the cost and allowed ASG to charge students only $20 each for the trip. The cost includes a ticket to the game, the round-trip bus ride, a T-shirt, lunch at the game and a spirit item.
The group will depart from the Arkansas campus early Saturday morning and is scheduled to arrive in Oxford at 9 a.m. A tailgate is planned in Ole Miss’ famous “Grove” before kickoff at 11:21 a.m. Central time. The group will return to Fayetteville an hour after the game.
“This trip wouldn’t be possible without the athletic department,” Arnold said. “It really was a collaborative effort between the Associated Student Government and the athletic department. They have been very, very helpful in this matter, giving us everything that we needed to make this trip successful.”
Arnold is hopeful that the success of this trip will carry over into the future and show the athletic department what kind of commitment and passion the students at the university have for its sports.
“We will have a lot of student support at the Ole Miss game, which is really important, especially on the road,” Arnold said. “I think (the athletic department) will see that and be very impressed and very willing to do this again in the future.”