A USC student started a petition Monday urging the NCAA, SEC, ESPN and the university to change the kick-off time of the Nov. 28 matchup against in-state rival Clemson from 12 p.m. to a later time slot. Since the petition went online at approximately 5 p.m. Monday, it accumulated over 8,000 signatures in less than 24 hours.
Second-year mechanical engineering student Jay Selesky listed several reasons he started the petition, including the amount of noon games the football team has had this season, the importance and history of the rivalry, Clemson’s status as number one in the college football rankings, inconvenient travel plans for Clemson fans, hardships the team and the community have endured after the devastating impact of October’s flooding and the resignation of Steve Spurrier as head football coach.
“The atmosphere of a noon game versus the atmosphere of an afternoon or night game just isn't a fair comparison,” Selesky said. “Especially in such an important game like this one, Williams-Brice needs to be in full swing, and it will be difficult to get it there for a game that starts at noon.”
Selesky said he was not expecting the amount of signatures and backing his petition has received thus far.
“I am very surprised by the support the petition has received,” Selesky said. “I knew there would be support, but I didn't expect 8,000 signatures less than a day later.”
Selesky said he reached out to friends at Clemson and tried to share the petition via Facebook “Class of 20XX” pages.
“I have heard that Clemson fans are just as upset as us with the time of the game,” Selesky said. “Travel becomes a real hassle for them, and they believe they deserve a better time slot.”
Selesky said he has reached out to various officials through social media regarding his cause but has not received any responses.
“If I don't hear anything by tomorrow, I may turn to a more direct approach in getting their attention,” Selesky said Monday night.