NC Governor to Allow UNC Football Parents to Attend Games

Quierra Luck

Good news for the parents of Tar Heel football players.

North Carolina Governor, Roy Cooper, has agreed to allow parents to attend home football games with a little extra push from some Wolfpack parents.

The News and Observer report that Thursday morning, Wolfpack football parents met at the governor's administration office downtown to deliver a 96 signatures petition. Leading the pack was N.C. State tight end Thomas Ruocchio's father, John. He's excited to know their voice was heard.

Kelly Connor, Communications Manager for the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services, released a statement committed to lowering the risk of sickness and understanding the difficulties of not being there for your child.

"We understand that parents and close family members are accustomed to, and look forward to seeing their athletes play games and that not being there is incredibly difficult," Connor said. "DHHS is supportive of higher education institutions developing plans and protocols for game-day operations that mitigate risk as much as possible to keep players, coaches, staff, parents and close family members as safe as possible."

North Carolina football coach Mack Brown has been an enormous advocate for parents attending games. Leading up to last week's game, Brown made consistent pleas to the governor, and leadership, to allow parents in Keenan stadium. Brown sent letters on behalf of the players, and it seemed to pay off.

In his statement, Brown understood the parameters surrounding having parents at the game, but in a stadium that can hold 50,000, preventing parents from missing their child play needs to be worked out.

"I've talked to so many of our parents, and they've never missed a game. The parents are going to come to Chapel Hill anyway, and they're going to be outside the stadium or having to try to find a place to watch it on T.V." Brown remarked, "These parents need to be in that game; and we're really hoping that we will get permission to do that. There'd be few enough of them and they could have an individual section."

Due to a player being exposed to COVID-19, Charlotte was taking extra precautions and canceled the game. Since the announcement, North Carolina is taking this week as a bye week and looking for an opponent for September 26th. A date parents can watch their sons. 

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