College GameDay excitement builds at Northwestern

October 5, 2013 6:19:59 AM PDT
It's homecoming weekend for the Northwestern Wildcats. The homecoming parade was just getting under way on Friday night on Sheridan Road in Evanston.

It's not often that the national spotlight is on Evanston, but that is the case this weekend as Northwestern celebrates Homecoming. The grand marshal is ESPN radio host Mike Greenberg.

"This is incredible. I'm about to speak to the pep rally and I have four words for them, "This is our time," said Greenberg.

The party is just getting started Friday night on the campus as students and alums celebrate possibly the biggest homecoming game in Northwestern history.

"Then we beat Ohio State and then, that's it. The party continues," said Tracey Bell, Northwestern alum.

"This is big, this is really big-time for the program," said Alyssa Eisenstein, Northwestern alum.

Welcome to the traveling circus that is the popular ESPN college football preview show known as ESPN College GameDay. By Saturday morning, this field should be packed thousands of Northwestern students, alumni and fans-- giving Northwestern's lakeshore campus massive exposure around the country.

"This is so beyond our wildest dreams, I feel verklempt," said Alison Occhiuti, Northwestern alum.

It's one of the biggest games in the school's history as they take on undefeated 4th ranked Ohio State on homecoming. Northwestern, also undefeated, is ranked 16th, making it a good matchup for ESPN and a good opportunity for the pregame show to come to Evanston.

"It means a lot to them and it means a lot to their fans and alumni, especially with it being Homecoming. It's a great weekend to be here, we're really excited," said Judi Weiss, ESPN Operations producer.

Fans won't be permitted to camp out overnight, but the line to get in to GameDay opens at 5:30 a.m. Saturday morning. The show starts at 8 a.m.


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