BROOKINGS, SD (KELO) — The eyes of the college football world will be focused on Brookings this weekend when ESPN broadcasts its College GameDay from the SDSU campus. Local law enforcement will also be paying close attention to see that the celebrating doesn’t get out of hand. It takes a lot of teamwork between campus and Brookings police, along with sheriff’s deputies and the highway patrol, to make sure everyone stays safe.
The College GameDay equipment trucks parked at SDSU are an on-campus curiosity among students anticipating the big game against top-ranked NDSU.
“I think it’s so cool coming to Brookings, South Dakota, it’s a big deal for both schools,” SDSU sophomore Makenzie Kerkhoff said.
The big crowds on Saturday will include extra deputies from the Brookings County Sheriff’s Department who will be watching the tailgaters. The county will also have more jail staff on duty.
“There will be some arrests, yes. But do we anticipate any big problems? Absolutely not. We just need to be prepared,” Brookings County Assistant Sheriff Scott Sebring said.
The highway patrol will conduct a saturation on Saturday, looking out for drunk drivers.
“We see situations where people make poor choices and we have impaired drivers out there, but we’ll have extra troopers in the area,” Sgt. Josh Olson of the South Dakota Highway Patrol said.
Students appreciate the heavy law enforcement presence, in and around their campus.
“I think that’s a smart idea, obviously for any game, and then obviously for a rival school,” Kerkhoff said.
Law enforcement says they’ll approach Saturday’s activities much like a typical Hobo Day homecoming. Only this time, a national audience will be watching.
Traffic control will also be a priority for law enforcement, especially with so many fans driving in from North Dakota. Authorities are reminding drivers to watch out for farm equipment on the roads because of the late harvest. They’re urging everyone to be patient on their way to, and from, the stadium.