It’s New Year’s Eve and it’s Gator Bowl Eve. Either way it’s the day before the big game.
The Huskers take on Georgia in Jacksonville on New Year’s Day and the fans from both sides have been filtering into town.
Many of them attended the Gator Bowl luncheon at the convention center Tuesday. Chancellor Harvey Perlmann and Athletic Director Shawn Eichorst, along with the Nebraska football team and the Georgia football team, got a preview of the game. The Gator Bowl trophy was front and center.
Husker Head Coach Bo Pelini talked about the 32-day layoff for his team since the end of the regular season.
“It's very much like a first game, the fundamentals and being ready early on,” he said. “Hopefully your guys will be ready on game day. They have some experience and you have a number of guys doing it for first time.”
There was a pep rally for Big Red fans at the Jacksonville Landing. An estimated 2,000 fans listened to the Cornhusker marching band and the Husker Cheer Squad. The fans are all fired-up for this game against the Bulldogs.
Despite low tickets sales in Nebraska, there were still many Husker fans in the southeast who made the trip to Jacksonville.
For those who did make the trip to Florida, it was worth it. The Big Red fans turned out in force for a New Year's Eve pep rally.
One fan told us, “We got tickets from Santa Claus. And it’s my five year-old, who is the diehard Nebraska fan. It’s his first Nebraska football game.”
Santa was also good to some Husker fans who lives in Texas.
"It’s a Christmas present for the twin boys to come to see Nebraska in the Gator Bowl. We live in San Antonio, but we are still big Husker fans."
Big Red fans will definitely be outnumbered at the game on New Year's Day. The stadium is only five-and-a-half hours from the Georgia campus in Athens.