TEMPE, Ariz. -- LSU and Arizona State have moved their
football game Saturday from Baton Rouge, La., to Tempe because of
Hurricane Katrina, with the Sun Devils saying they will donate most
of the gate receipts to the relief effort.
"We don't want to interfere with the recovery effort in any
way," LSU athletic director Skip Bertman said Monday.
Because of the many evacuees in the Baton Rouge area, the school
does not have full use of its facilities, and "we cannot guarantee
housing for anybody," LSU chancellor Sean O'Keefe said.
Earlier, No. 5 LSU postponed its scheduled home game last
Saturday against North Texas.
No. 20 Arizona State, coming off a 63-16 home victory over
Temple on Thursday night, will donate all of its post-expenses gate
receipts to the relief effort.
"We invite people in the southeastern area to plan to come to
Tempe for Saturday evening," O'Keefe said. "It's going to be a
great contest, and there's no doubt in my mind it will produce an
outcome that we're all going to be very impressed with."
The Tigers also will visit Tempe on Sept. 6, 2008, under the
home-and-home original agreement. The athletic departments are
working to schedule a makeup game in 2006 or 2007 that will require
Arizona State to play in Baton Rouge.
"That will be an additional game without a return trip,"
Arizona State senior associate athletic director Tom Collins said.
He estimated the game could generate $1 million in relief funds.
Collins, school football operations director Tom Kleinlein and
university police chief John L. Pickens traveled to Baton Rouge to
appraise the situation over the weekend and urged LSU officials to
give up the home game, one of seven in an 11-game schedule.
The Tigers will still be the home team in a national telecast.
Bertman said LSU considered using the University of Mississippi's
stadium in Oxford as well as a stadium in Shreveport that has
hosted bowl games.
"There are reasons we decided on this trip, and they're pretty
solid," he said.
"We think it would have been close to a sellout, with the
walkup, under normal conditions, but we'll never know," Berkman
said. "But this thing is being beamed out to 25 million homes, and
it says a lot about us getting up on our feet."
Mike Chismar, Arizona State's associate athletic director for
operations and facilities, acknowledged the job ahead in preparing
Sun Devil Stadium for a major event with short notice, but pointed
out that it had been done in the past.
"In 2003, we had 24 hours' notice to turn around a Monday night
NFL football game and we did that without a hitch," Chismar said.