Next three Colorado-Colorado State games in Denver

Updated: March 1, 2006, 5:31 PM ET
Associated Press

DENVER -- In-state rivals Colorado and Colorado State will play their next three games on neutral turf at the 76,000-seat Invesco Field, home of the Denver Broncos, the schools announced Wednesday.

The first of the three games will be Sept. 9, with Colorado State designated the home team.

The deal resolves -- for three years, at least -- questions about what stadium provides a venue that's fair to both teams while offering the best atmosphere and the most revenue.

Colorado State athletic director Mark Driscoll said tickets will be split, with the Rams receiving 45 percent and Colorado, which has a larger student body, getting 55 percent. Driscoll said his university stands to make approximately $1 million in gross revenue if they sell all their tickets.

If Colorado sells out its share, athletic director Mike Bohn said, Colorado is expected to make $1.6 million.

Bohn said tickets will be sold for $55 apiece and will be included in the teams' season ticket packages.

Previous games have been played at Colorado's 54,000-seat Folsom Field in Boulder and at Invesco and its predecessor, Mile High Stadium.

Colorado has said it prefers to play all its home games in Boulder, while Colorado State has said it would like all the games to be played on neutral turf in Denver or, as a backup, would want to play every other year in Fort Collins, where the stadium only holds 34,400.

Both teams expressed satisfaction with the new agreement.

Driscoll said the deal was convenient because while the teams had handshake agreements that they would play, there wasn't a formal game contract made for this year's matchup, which was supposed to be played in Fort Collins.

"I guess both teams would have been looking for another game to play," he said.

New Buffaloes coach Dan Hawkins said it would've been nice to have home field advantage in Boulder but said he doesn't mind the neutral field.

"I don't get into semantics," he said. "The wind will always blow. It's always going to be hot or cold. You just have to go out there and play."

A committee has been formed to bring a bowl-like atmosphere to the game, with pep rallies, parades and designated tailgating areas.

Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press