It’s official: the State College Little Lions will play Cumberland Valley at the Beaver Stadium Classic on Oct. 26.
The school district announced the game Wednesday afternoon in a press release.
The game will be a Mid Penn Conference clash in both team’s regular season finale, and will serve as the Little Lions’ Senior Night. The school’s usual home stadium, Memorial Field, is closed for the 2019 season as it undergoes renovations.
Kickoff will be at either noon or 5 p.m., depending on the start time for Penn State’s road contest at Michigan State.
In the release, State College head coach Matt Lintal expressed thanks from himself and his players for the opportunity — especially with not being able to play at Memorial Field.
“We are extremely excited and grateful for the opportunity that this will provide our community,” he said. “Most of the players on our team have grown up dreaming about running out of the tunnel at Beaver Stadium. To have this opportunity, especially for our senior class who has sacrificed so much for our program, is truly amazing. We are thankful for all of the efforts that have gone into making this possible.”
According to State High Athletic Director Chris Weakland, State College and Cumberland Valley were the first two schools to submit a request to play in Beaver Stadium when Penn State offered the opportunity to Mid Penn Conference schools over the summer.
“We are so thankful for this opportunity for not only our players and coaches, but also our school community,” Weakland said. “This is an experience that we hope everyone can enjoy and cherish for a long time to come.”
Neither school involved in the game will be able to collect revenue or receive compensation to play at the field, per NCAA regulations. Each school will have to cover its own expenses.
When asked in August about the possibility of hosting a high school game at Beaver Stadium, Nittany Lions coach James Franklin said he was in favor of the idea — and, in fact, would like to eventually host the PIAA football championships there.
“When we can be great partners in our community and when we can be great partners in our state and provide a great experience in this community and for the state of Pennsylvania for something that’s going to promote athletics and promote college football and high school football in our state, then we’re going to want to do it.,” he said then. “I don’t think it’s going to happen very often, but there’s going to be some times where it does make sense.”
Tickets for the Beaver Stadium Classic can be purchased at the schools, in person or at the Bryce Jordan Center for $10 beginning on Tuesday.
Fans will be asked to park in the Stadium West or Jordan East lots. Parking costs $10 per vehicle, and can be purchased along with the tickets. the parking fee will be waived for vehicles that display a valid Penn State-issued parking pass for faculty, staff and students. Lots will open two hours before kickoff.
Tailgating will not be permitted, Penn State said.