USC football fans looking forward to a return to on-campus tailgating on game days will have to put their plans on hold for the home opener, and possibly longer, the school announced Wednesday.

USC Athletic Director Mike Bohn broke the news to the USC community in an email.

“Over the past week, we have welcomed back 44,000 students and nearly 12,000 employees for the fall semester. The university has worked hard to prepare our campuses to resume in-person activities, and we have a responsibility to prioritize the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff as our campuses return to full density for the first time since March 2020,” he said.

“Therefore, at the recommendation of our medical experts, we have made the difficult decision not to host on-campus tailgating and other gameday activities for the USC vs. San Jose State game on September 4,” Bohn wrote

“Please note this change has only been made for the first game as we manage the substantial increases in campus density and in-person activities resulting from move-in week. There are no changes to pre-game activities at the Coliseum at this time. We will assess the public health situation on campus and consult with public health authorities before making decisions about future games.”

To safeguard the health and safety of the university community as students and staff return to in-person learning, campus access has been restricted and perimeter checks have been put in place at campus entrances.

Anyone who plans to park on or walk through campus on the way to the Coliseum on Sept. 4 will need to display a completed “Trojan Check” badge that can be completed online.

Bohn also reminded game-goers of a recently enacted Los Angeles County Department of Health Public order that requires all fans, regardless of vaccination status, to wear face coverings or masks within the Coliseum. Facial coverings may be briefly removed only while actively eating or drinking.

The guidance went into effect last week for all venues that seat 10,000 or more spectators, including the Coliseum.

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