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University to implement clear bag policy

Athletics+decided+to+institute+a+clear+bag+policy+to+improve+safety+at+games.+The+policy+bars+items+such+as+camera+cases%2C+purses%2C+fanny+packs+and+backpacks+among+others.
Athletics decided to institute a clear bag policy to improve safety at games. The policy bars items such as camera cases, purses, fanny packs and backpacks among others.

Athletics decided to institute a clear bag policy to improve safety at games. The policy bars items such as camera cases, purses, fanny packs and backpacks among others.

Jennifer Dettwiller

Jennifer Dettwiller

Athletics decided to institute a clear bag policy to improve safety at games. The policy bars items such as camera cases, purses, fanny packs and backpacks among others.

Jennifer Dettwiller, Staff Reporter

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The university is set to implement the National Collegiate Athletic Association’s clear bag policy for all ticketed athletic events on campus.

Approved items include plastic zip top bags that are no larger than one gallon, are resealable and are clear, clear drawstring bags or clear totes. Totes can be plastic, vinyl or PVC no larger than 12 inches by 6 inches by 12 inches. Also, small clutch purses no larger than 4.5 inches by 6.5 inches and seat cushions with no pockets and no larger than 16 inches are permitted.

However, items such as briefcases, backpacks, camera cases, purses, fanny packs, oversized tote bags, printed pattern plastic bags, mesh bags, reusable grocery totes, duffel bags and tinted or textured bags are not allowed.

Lindsey Cramer, director of athletic marketing and promotions, explained why the decision was made to carry out this policy.

“The Clear Bag Policy was implemented as a safety and security measure,” said Cramer. “It wasn’t an institutional decision, per se, but a policy that is being enforced across the country for NCAA and professional sports. The policies vary by individual schools or teams and are tailored to meet their requirements and specific needs, but the foundations are all pretty consistent.”

Andrew Bechac, senior associate athletic director for internal operations, discussed why the athletic department has been talking about this policy for a few years.

“The clear bag policy has been implemented based off of research gathered from other venues, NFL sports, other collegiate sports and venues that have already gone to a clear bag policy,” said Bechac. “We’ve had this discussion for several years now about going to a clear bag policy, and this has been an evolving process with our policy as far as making sure we have a safe and friendly environment for all of our fans and student-athletes.”

Cramer explained the benefits and drawbacks that people may express during the first athletic event of the school year.

“The drawbacks to this policy are outweighed by the positive effects,” said Cramer. “A simple drawback is implementing change to your fans, students and community for events. I think change is always a little hiccup, but once your fans realize it’s for an overall positive experience, the news is perceived in a positive way.”

Cramer feels the policy is overall beneficial from an institutional standpoint.

“It’s intended to maintain the safety and security of athletic venues while decreasing wait times for fans to enter the respective venue,” said Cramer.

Clear bags will be available for purchase in the Hammond area.

“There are clear bags at Follett Bookstore currently. Before each game, we have the main bookstore in the student union, the bookstore trailer that will be out in Friendship Circle, as well as West Stadium at the merchandiser in the breezeway. They will also have some at the Victory Club merchandise table,” said Bechac. They’ll have clear bags available to purchase there. Also, other vendors around town will have clear bags available.”

Additional vendors will include places such as Big Frog Custom T-Shirts, CI Sports, Ruby Boutique, Edge Boutique, Imagine Boutique, More of Hammond and Academy Sports + Outdoors.

For more detailed information, a list of approved and prohibited bags and any other information that may be needed can be found at www.Lionsports.net/clear, or by calling the ticket office at 985-549-5466.

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