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New South Alabama Stadium Focuses on Security

Andy Berg

After a shooting at its existing stadium in August, the University of South Alabama isn’t resting on its laurels when it comes to security at the school’s new Hancock Whitney football stadium, which is set to be completed for the 2020 season.

The focus on security comes after at least two people opened fire inside of Ladd-Peebles Stadium — the Jaguars' previous home — during a high school football rivalry game. Nine people were shot, and the incident led to metal detectors at every entrance of the stadium in Mobile, Ala.

"As with all stadiums in the country, we are very aware of security starting away from the stadium with traffic in, sweeping checks throughout campus and the stadium proper, as customers enter, what steps are taken there, it’s going to be a very safe place on a very safe campus," athletic director Joel Erdmann told the local NBC affiliate.

Some fans said they'll feel safer on campus after the new stadium is completed. 

"Luckily we've not seen any violence, we haven't had a bad experience parking here, it's not been that bad, but I will feel much safer being there on campus," said one mom who spoke with NBC.

Even though South Alabama won't end the final season at Ladd-Peebles with a winning record, officials consider the new stadium a win.

"It's been a decade, it really has, and we appreciate the City of Mobile and the people with Ladd-Peebles stadium," Erdmann said.

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