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Ravens unveil plans to fill limited stadium seats that college programs may want to consider

The decisions that every stadium hoping to host fans this fall are weighing with social distancing guidelines leading to limited capacities are vast and complicated. Who gets let in and who doesn't? Do the season ticket holders get first dibs? What about students? What happens to the suites and luxury boxes?

As teams get ready to take the field in the fall, those are just a handful of the many impossible questions.

The Baltimore Ravens today announced that, provided fans are allowed at NFL stadiums this fall, they're prepared to welcome a max of 14,000 fans into their stadium. They also shared that they're deferring all season tickets for the 2020 season until 2021. The reduced capacity accounts for just under 20% of the total stadium capacity of 71,008.

The big issue at hand? The Ravens are coming off a special 14-2 season that saw quarterback Lamar Jackson win the league's MVP and excitement hasn't been higher around Baltimore football for years. That fever pitch led to a ticket sale boom with about 62,000 fans claiming season tickets.

The plan is that once a clearer picture is developed for what stadium seating will look like, individual game ticket sales will go on sale, with PSL (Permanent Seat License) owners receiving priority opportunities to grab single-game tickets.

"With over 62,000 season tickets already sold, there is no equitable way to accommodate in a limited stadium capacity all PSL Owners who are interested in maintaining season tickets for 2020," senior vice president of ticket sales and operations Baker Koppelman shared in the release from the organization. "Under these unusual circumstances, it's best to simplify the ticket sales process and allow fans to decide which games they want to attend, while giving our PSL Owners priority in accessing tickets."

Opening the tickets to game-by-game sales certainly seems to have a lot of merit.

Switching gears to college football, on a local radio station earlier today, South Carolina athletic director Ray Tanner floated the idea of Williams-Brice holding 15,000 fans come fall. For a stadium capacity made to hold 80,250 people, that's just under 19% of total capacity.

These are the types of really difficult decisions facing universities across the country right now. The approach in Baltimore may not be perfect, but it's a logical solution that surely college programs are also considering.

As for what happens with student sections and those suites that make the college football experience typically so unique, well a lot of eyes will be on what schools decide to do there.

See the full Ravens release here.