BOULDER, Colo. — For the first time ever, the CU Buffaloes spring game sold out, and everyone is crediting the Prime Effect for that.
More than 47,000 people showed up for the annual exhibition game, beating the previous record by more than double. Back in 2008, nearly 18,000 Buffs fans turned out.
"I wouldn't miss it," Joseph Harper said. "You couldn't get me to miss this."
Harper isn't even a Buffs fan. In fact, he lives in Arizona.
"This is not a game. This is the team playing against each other. You see this excitement?" he said. "You can't hardly believe it. This is off the charts."
Fans credit Coach Deion Sanders for a collective, renewed hope in the CU Buffs and a packed Folsom Field on Saturday.
"One person has just completely changed Boulder in a huge way," said CU junior Will Storey. "We’re finally excited for a sports team. It’s remarkable."
Harper flew in from Phoenix on Friday night, just to witness the Prime Effect.
"I didn't care what it costs. Got the tickets here, and I can't miss this game," he said. "I have to be here."
And now, he's part of the Buffs family.
"We're always willing to take new bandwagon fans," said Bhusan KC. "The bandwagon is always open."
KC grew up watching the Buffs and has been a season ticket holder for the last 10 years.
"I have people that have never hit me up for tickets, all of a sudden hitting me up for tickets," he said. "I’ve been to spring games where I think there’s more reporters than people in the stands, and so this is unprecedented."
Anthony Fox, a lifelong Buffs fan, said it's been a disappointing few decades.
"It's dormant volcano for the last 30 years," he said. "For the last 30 years, they've done nothing, and it's sad. Makes me sad as a fan, but now there's hope."
Storey said he went to the spring game last year, and the turnout was disappointing.
"People didn't know about it last year," he said. "You'd go into class, 'Are you going to the spring game? No, not at all. Don't even know what it is,' and then this year we're sold out and on ESPN."
He said being a Buffs fan doesn't get much better than this.
"First year, was stuck in the dorms, no football, no basketball. The year after was not-so great football, and then this year we have Deion Sanders as our coach. It's pretty amazing," Storey said. "It's just going to be a fun, festive atmosphere and hopefully the whole season can be like that."
This is the first time in CU history that football season tickets have sold out before August. Single-game tickets will be available for purchase in May.
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