BOONE, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — The national spotlight is on Appalachian State University’s football team this weekend. ESPN’s College GameDay will broadcast live for the first time ever in Boone, before the football game Saturday afternoon against Troy University.

The party is just getting started at App State. The TV crews from ESPN are already in place. 

Appalachian State is ready.

“It’s great to go to a place we haven’t been because there’s a novelty to it, for the students and for the fans,” said Rece Davis.

It’s something they’ve never seen before.

“This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, so you have to get up as early as possible and it’s going to be insane,” said Corbin Lammers, a student from Charlotte.

Some students are camping out overnight on Sanford Mall for the chance to be one of 500 students in the pit, getting them on live TV for ESPN’s College GameDay broadcast Saturday morning.

“It was cool to finally go to a game and see them blow it out and get the recognition they deserve,” said Grace Fowler, an App State student.

Fowler was in the stands last week when App State beat powerhouse Texas A&M earning them national recognition and the coveted College GameDay broadcast site.

“Listen, we’re a show that likes great football and we also like great atmospheres and we can get both with App State,” said David Pollack, an ESPN broadcaster.

Students are making their mark, getting creative to get their signs on TV.

“That’s why I’m dedicating my sign to the ‘Pond Baby.’ I think he helped us beat Texas A&M,” said student Michael Simms of Statesville, referring to the statue that was destroyed on campus after App State’s win over Texas A&M.

The students with the best signs not only get on the big screen, but one of the prizes is free tuition for a year.

“For me, it would mean everything, just being able to finish off my senior year with not having to pay for it,” said Allison Suddreth, a student.

Country music star Luke Combs, a former App State student, is set to be the guest picker Saturday morning for ESPN’s College GameDay.

Combs has a concert Friday night in Green Bay, so he’ll fly in Saturday morning for the show. It will be a quick trip, but a fun one.