Increased security in Kalamazoo for ‘College GameDay’

Police step up security ahead of ESPN "College GameDay" at Western Michigan University. (Nov. 18, 2016)
Police step up security ahead of ESPN "College GameDay" at Western Michigan University. (Nov. 18, 2016)


KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — Anyone heading to Western Michigan University for ESPN’s “College GameDay” can expect to see increased security in Kalamazoo.

WMU Public Safety Chief Merlo tells 24 Hour News 8 there will be a collaborative effort from police. WMU Public Safety will be assisted by officers from Michigan State Police, the Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety and Kalamazoo Township Police Department.

Security preparations include making sure thousands of people that are expected to attend can get in and out of the area safely. Also, officers are making sure to have the component of security itself on campus in place, this includes making sure ESPN employees remain safe as well as people in the pit area, and for the thousands of people behind them.

Officers will be on campus earlier than they normally would be for a game day and will be working overtime for this event.

Chief Merlo says they are taking “College GameDay” very seriously, but are also very excited for the weekend.

WMU Public Safety along with Discover Kalamazoo say they expect thousands to attend. Preparations for the event began when the announcement came out on Sunday.

“It’s been electric ever since the announcement on Sunday that ESPN College GameDay was coming and what’s happened during the course of the week is the excitement just continues to build,” said Greg Ayers with Discover Kalamazoo.

WMU will hold a free pep rally with WMU Football Coach P.J. Fleck Friday starting at 6:15 p.m. The event will include live music, photo stations, food trucks and appearances by Buster Bronco and WMU’s Cheer and Dance team.

WMU faces off against Buffalo at 3:30 p.m. Saturday. ESPN’s “College GameDay” will broadcast live from Sangren Plaza from 9 a.m. to noon. Fans will be allowed to fill the area surrounding the set two to three hours before ESPN’s coverage begins.

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WMU Broncos pep rally

WMU on ‘College GameDay’