As the dog days of summer approach and college athletic departments look for new ways to engage fans, Alabama athletic director Greg Byrne announced Saturday that he would host three lunches with groups of Crimson Tide fans who express their interest on Twitter this weekend.
Im going to do 3 lunches w/ 5 fans each time in my office. Dates are 7/10, 7/11 & 7/18.
Ideas to win - Tweet me pics of you in AL gear, tell me how long youve been a fan, etc.
Say which date(s) above can work.
Ill announce randomly selected winners tmw by 5pm. #RollTide
— Greg Byrne (@Greg_Byrne) June 23, 2018
Byrne's contest opens up a rare opportunity for fans to have the chance to sit down and get to know the leader of a major college athletic department in a small group setting.
Will Gene Smith replicate this idea and soon begin hosting Ohio State fans for lunch in his office at the Fawcett Center? Only time will tell if other schools choose to borrow Byrne's idea, but in a month where no college sports are in session, it makes sense for all colleges to find ways to get fans on campus and engage them in what the athletic department is doing.