MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Minnesota-Wisconsin border battle gets national attention this week.

ESPN’s College GameDay” is making its first-ever stop to Stadium Village for Saturday’s Gopher-Badger football game, with so much on the line.

“I’m sure some people, the die-hards will be ready and camping out and want to be right in front with their signs. It should be pretty fun,” said fan Bryan Rasmussen.

It’s the show where Lee Corso puts on the funny mascot heads and fans get really, really creative with their signs.

“They are proving we’ve earned this spot. I mean, some people are coming back from Thanksgiving just to come see ‘College GameDay,’” said fan Brogan Comstock.

Former Gopher running back Darrell Thompson says it’s an enormous opportunity for recruiting.

“It’s a big time for our alumni. It makes people, you know, stick their chest out,” Thompson said.

ESPN crews were on campus Monday working out the “GameDay” location and logistics. They will build the set on Wednesday.

So, who can go? “GameDay” is free, but if you want to get your sign on television you may have to camp out overnight. The University of Minnesota believes thousands of fans could be in the crowd.

Speaking of those signs, ESPN security will be on hand to make sure they’re football appropriate.

And every “College GameDay” show has a guest picker. Matthew McConaughey, John Goodman, and Chip and Johanna Gaines have all done it. There’s speculation it could be Tony Dungy, Lindsay Whalen or maybe even Brock Lesnar. Former Gopher wide-out Lee Hutton has a golden request for whoever gets to pick this game.

“The one thing I just have to ask the celebrity guest is you have to pick the Minnesota Gophers,” Hutton said.

All signs are “literally” pointing to a big showdown her on Saturday. A “College GameDay” sign-making event will actually take place on campus at Coffman Memorial Union on Tuesday night.

Saturday’s game at TCF Bank Stadium is sold out. You can find tickets on the resale market. The cheapest upper deck tickets we found started at $200 for the upper deck.

John Lauritsen

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