UK Men’s Basketball: What to know for the upcoming season
LEXINGTON, Ky. (WYMT/UK Athletics) - The Kentucky men’s basketball season tips off with the annual Big Blue Madness event on Friday and UK Athletics and Rupp Arena are announcing important game-day reminders ahead of the 2021-22 season.
UK officials continue to work to enhance the fan experience, while providing a safe environment in Rupp Arena. While continuing to monitor the latest health and safety guidelines from local and national authorities, UK Athletics plans to operate venues at full capacity this season, including at Big Blue Madness.
Please read below with answers to anticipated questions from fans this season:
- Game day – UK Athletics and Rupp Arena anticipates participation from the band, cheerleaders, dance team and on-court activities to return this season
- Campus COVID-19 safety policies - Regardless of vaccination status, all guests, staff and vendors will be required to wear a mask while visiting Rupp Arena. Fans will not be required to show proof of vaccination to enter Rupp Arena, but face coverings – covering the nose and mouth – are required for all fans as they watch the game from their assigned seat and enter, exit and move around Rupp Arena. Children 2 and younger will not be required to wear a mask. If spectators are unable to wear masks, they are encouraged not to attend games in person for the sake of their health and the health of others. Health and safety guidelines for the University of Kentucky can be found here. These reflect current recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, direction from state government, guidance from health department officials, and the counsel of UK’s STEM Through Authentic Research Training team of health scientists and clinicians. Fans should stay home if they are sick
- Mobile ticketing and parking - UK Athletics has fully transitioned to mobile ticketing at all venues, as announced in the fall of 2020. All tickets will be mobile and no physical season ticket books will be printed. Season ticket holders and individual game buyers will use the UK Athletics app to access and manage tickets. Season ticket holders may also manage tickets by visiting UKathletics.com/MyUKAccount from a mobile device’s web browser. As of Oct. 13, the UK Ticket Office is finalizing the set-up of mobile tickets. In the coming days, all season ticket holders will be notified by email once tickets are viewable and ready to be managed on their mobile device Season parking permits will also be issued via mobile delivery, and ticket holders with parking will access and display parking permits on a smartphone for entry into the arena lots To avoid game-day issues, UK Athletics encourages all fans to view tickets and parking permits and save them to a smartphone’s digital wallet (Apple Wallet or Google Pay) in advance of arriving to Rupp Arena Parking permits will be scanned at lot entry, so fans should have the mobile permit ready prior to leaving home. Fans may also be asked to show the permit on a phone prior to arriving at the lot entrance. This will assist traffic personnel to efficiently sort and direct vehicles approaching the complex For more information, helpful tips, and FAQs, visit UKathletics.com/MobileTickets. Season ticket holders without a smartphone are encouraged to contact the UK Ticket Office to make alternate arrangements, if they have not already done so Information on student ticketing will be released soon at UKStudentTix.com, including how and when season pass holders can claim tickets for each game. Instructions will also be available for how and when students can purchase single-game tickets
- Rupp Arena box office - The main box office has moved for this season, and a temporary structure will be located inside the High Street entrance, after patrons pass through security screening. The temporary box office opens 90 minutes prior to tipoff and closes at halftime. This serves as the primary location for ticket resolution, ticket sales and will call Fans may visit the box office at the arena if they require assistance with accessing their mobile tickets once they arrive Fans may contact the UK Ticket Office for assistance in advance of game day by calling (800) 928-2287. Hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 am – 4:00 pm
- Rupp Arena game-day parking sales - With a valid state-issued disabled hang tag fans can park in the non-reserved ADA lot located at Gate 1 of Rupp Arena. This lot will operate on a first-come, first-served basis at a cost of $20 per vehicle. Limited game-day parking is available on a first-come, first-served basis through the Central Bank Center in their West High Street Lots. A parking fee will be in effect for most all Rupp Arena events Lots open three hours prior to tipoff
- Ride sharing - Ride share vehicles are instructed to drop-off and pick-up at the convention center loading dock area, which can be reached via High Street or Manchester Street. Pregame ride share vehicles should approach the loading dock via High Street. Post-game ride share vehicles should approach via Manchester street
- On-going renovations at Rupp Arena – Due to the ongoing construction of the renovation project at Rupp Arena, fans are encouraged to arrive early and plan for possible entry delays. Renovations to the home of the Kentucky men’s basketball program are scheduled to be complete in the spring of 2022. These renovations, which include, upgrades to the upper seating bowl, approximately 50,000 square feet of UK hospitality club space and expanded concourses among other upgrades are included in these renovations. Fans will continue to see construction around the arena through the end of the 2021-22 season. View the Rupp Arena upgrades here Fans will be able to access Rupp Arena from the main entrances off High Street New for 2021: UK students should access Rupp Arena via the Main Street entrance Students are encouraged to access the Main Street entrance by approaching downtown from South Limestone followed by a left turn on West Main Street Students planning to park on-campus should follow all Transportation Services policies. Parking availability and location varies by permit type, so please read signage at the entrances to lots and structures, and pay attention to any additional control signage, curb markings and other parking control devices
UK Athletics also reminds fans of the following important information for game day this season: Game-day info online – The official online home for Kentucky men’s basketball game-day information is https://ukathletics.com/sports/gameday. Visit that website for everything to know about attending games at Rupp Arena this season
- Email questions – Fans with questions or feedback about basketball game day can contact UK Athletics by emailing BBNfirst@uky.edu
- Doors open 90 minutes prior to tipoff - Rupp Arena security will not permit the following items inside the arena: All illegal substances, artificial noisemakers and irritants, backpacks, banners, beach balls, cameras with detachable lenses, firearms, fireworks, frisbees, flasks, glass and aluminum containers, helium balloons, laser pointer/pen, mace, outside food and beverages, selfie sticks, signs larger than 24 inches by 24 inches, stadium seats in excess of 18 inches wide or stadium seats with hard plastic or metal parts, video or audio recorders
- Clear bag policy – As a reminder, the Southeastern Conference’s clear bag policy remains in place at Rupp Arena as an additional safety measure and to facilitate entry. Each fan will be permitted to carry one large clear bag – either a one-gallon Ziploc-style bag or a 12″ x 6″ x 12″ clear bag – plus a small clutch that does not exceed 4.5″ x 6.5″. The small clutch allows privacy for small personal items and is also easily searched. The clear bag policy improves public safety by making bags easily searched and significantly reducing faulty bag searches. Fans are encouraged not to bring bags to reduce touch points All bags and jackets are subject to inspection at all Rupp Arena entrances. The following items are welcome inside Rupp Arena: Camera lenses – maximum length six inches; no detachable lenses Service animals – as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act Seat cushions – maximum width 18 inches and cannot have any hard plastic or metal parts or backs Strollers – small collapsible style
- Walkthrough metal detectors - Upon arrival, fans will be requested to remove items like cell phones, keys, bags/purses and large metal objects that may set off the alarm, thus requiring further inspection. Although these units are more effective and faster than handheld metal detectors, patrons should still plan to arrive early to events in order to avoid standing in long lines
- Resale and authorized purchase – UK Athletics cautions against purchasing tickets through unauthorized sellers. Only tickets purchased directly through the following outlets are guaranteed to be valid: UK Ticket Office Ticketmaster Rupp Arena Box Office FEVO Visiting Team Ticket Office
Fans interested in acquiring new season tickets are encouraged to enter the men’s basketball season ticket lottery online. For more information on lower-level seating that is currently available with a K Fund pledge commitment, please reach out to the UK Athletics K Fund staff at (859) 257-6300.
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