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College Sports

Cal Poly hosts spectators at a sporting event for first time in more than a year

Baggett Stadium at Cal Poly
Cal Poly's Baggett Stadium to host about 600 fans under new spectator guidance. (Dave Alley/KEYT)

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. -- Cal Poly is set to welcome back spectators to sporting events for the first time in more than a year beginning Thursday.

With reduced restrictions now in place, the baseball team will be able to host about 600 fans inside Baggett Stadium.

The Mustangs start a three-game non-conference series with San Jose State tonight at 6 p.m.

It will mark the first sporting event with fans in attendance on the Cal Poly campus since the baseball team hosted Baylor on March 8, 2020.

The two teams will also play games on Friday at 6 p.m. and Saturday at 1 p.m.

Last month, the Big West Conference Board of Directors announced unanimous approval of a measure to allow each school to exercise institutional discretion with regard to fan attendance at spring sporting events.

"Although policies and procedures will vary from place to place, all 11 Big West institutions remain committed to protecting the health, safety and welfare of our student-athletes," said Big West Commissioner Dan Butterly. "Based on the best guidance from university leadership and public health officials, each institution will be able to assess conditions on the ground and determine the best course of action. With case counts diminishing and outdoor sports presenting a lower risk of spread, we remain cautiously optimistic and are pleased to welcome fans back to venues where it is possible to provide a safe environment for both student-athletes and fans alike."

Cal Poly was among the Big West schools that decided to allow spectators, while others, such as UCSB, has chosen keep games closed to the public.

In a statement, UCSB said, "As the campus remains closed at this time, UC Santa Barbara will continue with the policy adopted by the conference prior to the beginning of the men's and women's basketball seasons, which was to hold events with no fans in attendance.  UCSB Athletics, along with senior campus leadership, will continue to evaluate the situation and revisit it in the future."

Cal Poly has stated its plan for fan attendance is consistent with state and county recommendations. 

With San Luis Obispo County currently in the Red Tier of California's Blueprint For a Safer Economy, the university is allowed up to 20 percent of capacity at its venues.

For Baggett Stadium, it means 628 fans will be permitted to attend, while 200 are allowed for softball at Bob Janssen Field.

The football team was planning to allow 2,200 spectators at Spanos Stadium, but earlier this week, the university announced the program was opting out of the remainder of its spring season due to a large number of injuries.

For Cal Poly sports ticket information, click here.

California / Coronavirus / Entertainment / Outdoors / Safe at Home / San Luis Obispo County / Sports
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Dave Alley

Dave Alley is a reporter and anchor at NewsChannel 3-12. To learn more about Dave, click here.

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