Texas A&M University President Bowen Loftin met Monday with student leaders about concerns where students will sit at Kyle Field due to rules from the Southeastern Conference.
The SEC bars students in the first 25 rows behind the opponents bench and between the 30 yard lines. Vice President for Marketing and Communications Jason Cook says at Kyle Field, that amounts to 1,400 students in two sections of the first deck.
Cook says Dr. Loftin pledged that nothing will be done to negatively impact the home field advantage. That includes telling officials with the SEC and member schools will continue to be told about the A&M tradition of students sitting behind the opponents.
Cook also noted a misperception that the east side of Kyle Field is all students. He says last season, about half of the first deck was populated by general admission, fans from the visiting school, and the visitors band.
Cook says one option presented at Monday’s meeting would increase student seating by a couple of hundred. The band would move two sections to the north and move those displaced by the band to the south end zone.
Student leaders responded to the meeting with this news release:
This morning, Dr. Loftin hosted a meeting with student leaders and administrators from his staff, the Athletic Department, 12th Man Foundation, Corps of Cadets, and Aggie Band to begin a dialogue about the SEC regulations on student seating.
The impact of these regulations would only affect sections 141 and 142. These sections are currently occupied by the Aggie Band. Dr. Loftin began this dialogue of adapting to SEC regulations by offering a plan to add 100 student seats in addition to our current allocation in the event that we must relocate the Aggie Band. This is a remarkable sign of Texas A&M’s continued commitment to students and the tradition of Kyle Field being the home of the 12th Man.
However, as Student Body President, I firmly believe that the logistical discussion of rearranging our student sections should not occur until our administration exhausts all viable options for an exemption to these regulations.
Serving as the voice of our student body, I share with my fellow students the discussions I participate in through meetings with administrators. I move forward representing our interests as this dialogue continues.