While there still are tickets available for Tampa Bay's 2009 regular season home opener vs. the Dallas Cowboys, the Buccaneers' first home game of the season will not be blacked out on local television, the Bucs confirmed Thursday.
The contest will be broadcast on local television, but there still are tickets available for fans to purchase for the Bucs vs. Cowboys game at Raymond James Stadium. Fans wishing to purchase tickets can do so through TIcketMaster.com.
It is unclear how many tickets remain unsold, but the Bucs confirmed today that Sunday's home contest would air on local television.
Shortly after the Bucs won the Super Bowl in 2003, the team had a season ticket waiting list of over 100,000, but inconsistent play and a tough economy have led to a drop off in season ticket renewals and plenty of available seats at Raymond James Stadium, which holds close to 66,000 fans.
By league rule, any regular season game that fails to sell out is subject to a television blackout, which the NFL defines as locally within a 75-mile radius of the stadium.
The last time Tampa Bay had a home game blacked out was during the 1997 regular season.
Every game ever played at Raymond James Stadium, which first opened in 1998, has been locally televised. That streak will continue for at least one more home game.
Fans Attending Sunday's Game Encouraged To Donate Items
Not only will Tampa Bay kick off the 2009 regular season vs. Dallas on Sunday, the Glazer Family Foundation is also set to host a military supply drive at Raymond James Stadium.
Fans attending Sunday's game are encouraged show their support for the armed forces by donating coffee, hygiene items, and nonperishable food and new or slightly used CDs and DVDs.
Volunteers from Support Our Troops, a nonprofit organization, will collect the donations at all gates and club entrances at Raymond James Stadium on Sunday.
Morris To Launch Program Aimed At Reaching Students
On Friday, Bucs head coach Raheem Morris will announce his Be the Ultimate Character Student (BUCS) program, a charter education initiative for Hillsborough and Pinellas County students.
The program is aimed at teaching students lessons on education and athletics as they relate to character. To drive this message home, Morris will host a video podcast to air in the middle schools and high schools in both Hillsborough and Pinellas Counties and on Buccaneers.com. In the videos, Morris will discuss education, leadership, determination and character.