EUGENE, Ore. (KMTR) -- A crowd of thousands joined ESPN’s College GameDay crew in Eugene Saturday morning, with some camping out for hours.
The popular college football cable program made its seventh broadcast in Eugene in the UO Memorial Quad on campus. It’s the second time the crew has been in the Quad, showing the Lillis Business Complex in the background.
The show started at 6 AM on ESPN U and, despite the early hour and rain, many people waited overnight to be part of the crowd.
"This crowd is just amazing! Even with the weather, [they] got up and it was pouring rain, but nothing is going to stop us,” said Tom Finneran, the so-called Duck Nut.
Finneran has attended all seven of the College GameDay events in Oregon. A lifelong Ducks fan, he says it’s always worth coming back, especially now with all of the title talk.
“To see where the program has been and gone and where we are now, on the verge of another national championship,” says Finneran. “Oregon is in line to be the first team ever in Division I history to go back-to-back-to-back BCS games,” says Finneran.
Finneran was also honored as the Fan of the Game at the broadcast.
The excitement keeps many coming back from far and wide.
"I think some of the novelty has worn off but we still love coming down and cheering for our Ducks and just being part of the scene,” says Corey Proctor, a Ducks fan from Portland.
The crowd kept entertained with the antics of the Oregon Duck and Saturday Selection guest Braden Pape'. Pape' was on the show last year, singing the College GameDay theme song. This year, at five-and-a-half-years old, he picked projected winners and losers for the top games across the nation.
Pape' eventually put on a cardboard Duck helmet to imitate GameDay host Lee Corso wearing the Duck mascot head. Corso then tried to one-up him, holding a real duck while wearing the Duck mascot head.