Thousands of Husker fans are headed to Los Angeles for this weekend’s game with U.C.L.A. Many took off from Eppley Airfield Thursday morning, well before sunrise.
“The first Big Red chant, that’ll wake everybody up,” said Bob Kment, a banker by day and purveyor of Good Life Tours, LLC. He, along with partner Gary Mixan, former Bellevue mayor, were escorting a group of 47 by plane. Several others planned on joining them in Los Angeles.
Husker fans have a reputation for traveling with their team. "It's just the passion for the game, for their team and they follow them win or lose."
On their tour, participants planned on heading to a taping of The Tonight Show, a tour of Universal Studios, the Reagan Library and an Angels baseball game. The entire package, with lodging and airfare, cost $1,425 a person.
Game tickets themselves are $67 face value. The University of Nebraska ticket office has sold more than 8,000. Officials with UCLA anticipate up to 15,000 Husker fans will take up seats at the Rose Bowl.
Thousands who reside in California are expected to be part of that crowd, since it has the third largest Nebraska alumni population in the country.
Mary Smith of Omaha, who was leaving on a 6:20 a.m. flight, said her daughter supports Big Red football even though she went to UCLA. Her friend and travel companion laughed, “She knows better than to root for anyone else.”
Many fans are also planning on driving an hour-and-a-half south for a high school football game Friday night because Nebraska’s coaching staff has shown interest in the quarterback for Santa Clarita High School.
“I just hope they play well and if they win, they win. If they don’t, we’ll go on to the next game,” said Kment. “It won’t stop us from coming out to root the Huskers on.”