Penn State said Thursday that fans will not be allowed at 106,572-seat Beaver Stadium this fall for Nittany Lions football games due to the coronavirus.
It is the second-largest stadium in the United States behind Michigan Stadium (107,601) in Ann Arbor, Mich., and the fourth largest in the world.
The university made the announcement in an email sent to season-ticket holders, saying the decision was based on current restrictions set by the state of Pennsylvania. That leaves open the possibility of allowing fans if the COVID-19 situation should improve.
"As of today, the current large group gatherings guidance from the Governor's office limits capacity to 250 people for outside events and 25 people for inside events," athletic director Sandy Barbour said in the email. "Therefore, under the current conditions and current state orders, our fall sports events would be conducted without fans in the general seating areas of our facilities. We continue to work with the Governor's office to discuss, and possibly be prepared for the opportunity to have spectators at our fall Penn State sporting events.
"Despite the current state orders, we continue to refine our plans to welcome Nittany Lion fans, should the conditions and orders be revised to accommodate spectators at events," she added. "These plans will have the safety and wellbeing of our student-athletes, coaches, staff, fans and community at the forefront. Let me be clear; we will only enact these plans should the orders currently in place by the Governor and the PA Department of Health accommodate such activity based on conditions and public health advice."
Penn State is scheduled to open the season at home against Northwestern on Sept. 5.
Season-ticket holders have three options: request a refund, roll over the payments toward 2021 season tickets, or convert the payment into a tax-deductible donation to the school.
--Field Level Media