Busloads of Bearcat fans take-off for The Sugar Bowl

By Stefano DiPietrantonio – bio |email

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - The undefeated UC Bearcats are about to take on Florida in the Sugar Bowl. The team is already in New Orleans and hundreds of Bearcat faithful left Wednesday to join them.

They made noise and cheered holding big cardboard signs, ready to get their party on and ready to cheer on their champion Bearcats.

UC students are psyched, their bags are packed and iPods are jammed with songs for the long haul to the Big Easy.

There are ten buses in all, taking some 500 students on a long drive, 15 to 16 hours, to get to Louisiana.

"Oh, I don't know, probably listen to my iPod," said Brian Parido. "I'll guess I'll just try and sleep."

Hannah Morris said she is ready no matter how long it takes.

"Fifteen or sixteen (hours) they tell me," Morris said. "I am more than psyched, can't wait."

The students are eager to cheer on their champion Bearcats and definitely not superstitious about the game.

"I don't wanna jinx it, so I'm just crossing my fingers," Morris said. "Just one hand though, not two."

They've all got a strategy for surviving the long haul. "The goal is to be close to the restroom but not too close, ya know?" laughed Morris. "Umm let's see, got a couple magazines, couple books, card games, hopefully some sleeping, that'd be good."

"I brought my iPod, we have food," said Kyle Shepherd.

He and his brother Aaron have been set to go for weeks.

"Dec. 5 we got our ticket," Aaron said.

"I was hoping for the National Championship but it'll be awesome to beat Florida, see Tim Tebow cry again will be pretty sweet," laughed his brother Kyle.

"These things have to come together very quickly, ya know," said Keith Stichtenoth, Associate Executive Director of the UC Alumni Association. "We don't know where we're going until the last second, everybody finds out then all of a sudden it's how can I get there, so we have to work fast."

They scrambled to get on the road and are hoping for a big win.

"We did this last year as a University we went to the Orange Bowl, we took about 20-thousand people, so that kinda broke us all in as a community, getting somewhere else in large numbers," Stichtenoth said.

The Alumni Association says they helped transport about 500 people last year, but estimate there were at least 20-thousand fans sporting the red and black at the Orange Bowl last year.

They are already projecting closer to 25,000 fans for the Sugar Bowl this year in New Orleans.

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