GAME #63
Friday, October 27, 2023

Florida Atlantic Owls: 3-4
@ Charlotte 49ers: 2-5


Jerry Richardson Stadium
Charlotte, North Carolina

Trip Dates 10/26/2023 – 10/28/2023
School University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Visiting Team Florida Atlantic Owls
Pre-game Record: 3-4
Home Team Charlotte 49ers
Pre-game Record: 2-5
Game Time (ET) 7:30 PM Eastern 
Weather 70 & Sunny
Attendees Jarrett & Al 
Jarrett’s Pick Florida Atlantic Owls
(41 and 21 record)
Al’s Pick Florida Atlantic Owls
(38 and 24 record)
Attendance 10,857
Capacity 15,314
Length of Game 3:34
Seat Location 40 Yard Line, Approx. 21st Row
Miles Traveled 1,626
Photo Album Click here for the Charlotte Photo Album


I had a Thursday afternoon flight from West Palm Beach to Charlotte via Atlanta. As I have mentioned in previous reports, the downside of PBI is the lack of destinations and this is a perfect example, having to connect in Atlanta to get to Charlotte. That just should not be, but it shall be. The flights were uneventful and I do love flying out of Palm Beach. I will note that as much as Atlanta has some great food options, concourse C is the most lacking. I will also point out that I had a very tough choice in Atlanta as my flight to Charlotte was right next to a flight to Gainesville, home of my beloved Gators. I did end up on the flight to Charlotte, but it was touch and go there for a few minutes.

I arrived in Charlotte and picked up the rental, which was uneventful. This was unlike my last rental in Birmingham where Dollar was out of cars and was downright rude about it saying it was of no consequence to me since I had not prepaid for the car. Seriously, I was in a real life Seinfeld episode. I will not recount it here, but just watch the Seinfeld episode about the rental car reservation and that was what I went through. In the end, Hertz (which owns Dollar) high end customer care did the right thing, but I had to escalate it up the food chain and Dollar was utterly useless. But I digress.


I stopped in at LongHorn Steakhouse for some dinner and for some football before heading to the hotel.  I will note that I am thinking that LongHorn is the best of these kinds of chains…Outback, Texas Roadhouse, LongHorn, etc.  It was a fairly decent dinner.  Note the use of all the “I”’s.  Al would not be flying in until Thursday morning. I will let him explain if he wishes but he is going to be putting his utmost confidence in airline travel over the next two trips, hoping that he gets to the game on time.  

I finally headed over to the hotel and settled in for the night.

Al arrived from the Charlotte airport, as air travel was kind to him on this day, and we headed over to the UNCC campus. After a bit of walking around we had a bit of lunch. The signage on campus was excellent as we could see what food options were located at different points on campus and what hours they were open. Lunch was pizza for me and Chick-Fil-A for Al. Not the best, but much kudos to UNCC for having a few choices and being able to see the choices, hours, and locations of where things were.

We then headed back to the bookstore for our standard shopping excursion. Unfortunately for me, the Charlotte bookstore does not carry any shot glasses. And there are no off campus bookstores to go to. We know because we looked and walked. I guess I will need to order one from the internet. The bookstore also did not have any shirts that I liked in my size. Al got his normal Al shirt and we then returned to our walking tour.
The UNCC campus is a very pretty campus. It was bigger than I remember as I have been here before when looking at colleges with Jake. But it was just as beautiful as I remember. We headed down to Jerry Richardson Stadium to have a look around.
We did a lap or two around and bought ourselves some tickets for later. Turns out that the seller of tickets from the athletic department at the ticket counter recognized us from our twitter posts and Quest tee shirts we were wearing. He sold us some good seats and we were set. He was unable to allow Al to retrieve the kicking tee after the kickoff.

At this point we made the decision that it was not worthwhile to head back to the hotel but rather to just hang out until game time. So we headed back to the union.

Jay Larsen (Gridiron Stadium Crusader)
So now I would like to introduce some friends that we met up with during our stop at Charlotte. This past summer, I went on a cruise/tour in Alaska with a number of family members. One day while on the cruise, I received an email from Jay that essentially stated, my father-in-law took a pic of your College Football Quest sweatshirt, I checked out your site, holy shit, I am on the same journey, we will be at the same game in Charlotte in October, and we should get together and swap stories. So of course, we made plans to meet up at Charlotte.

Jay, his brother Zach, and his father, arrived in Charlotte having been at the Georgia State at Georgia Southern game the night before. We met up and swapped some stories while the Larsen clan did some shopping and grabbed some food.

We exchanged stories of places we have been, places high on our list and other great football and travel stories. But the most interesting thing (at least to me) that came out of our meeting is that Zach played football at Northern Illinois and was on the field during our visit to NIU back in 2008, a game which currently ranks #4 on my list of the best games that we have seen. I am not sure that Zach sees it that way since NIU lost in overtime, but I still think it was a great game. So we spent some time reliving all the places that Zach played and those venues.

Beth would like to add that it is a good thing she reads these trip reports since I tell her nothing. That does not help her bargaining positioning when asking for that raise.

Tailgating and Pre Game
We all did a bit of tailgating in the parking garage as we continued to swap stories. After a bit of that, we moved on and headed towards the stadium. We passed by a large tailgate where the band was performing. Upon arrival at the stadium, Al was able to get in a few pics with the 49ers mascot.

We walked a bit and before we knew it, Jay and his cohorts had immersed themselves into a tailgate with a fully decorated 49ers bus. Looks like Jay and his family still have that drive and ambition that Al used to have. We had a very nice time tailgating with Diane and her clan. They also did a very nice job making pizzas on the grill.

Eventually it came time to head into the game. We went in and parted ways with Jay and his family. Al and I headed to the endzone to get some pics before heading to our seats.

We both pick FAU and we settle in for the game.

The Game
FAU won the coin toss and deferred so CLT would receive the opening kick. CLT took the opening kick and went on a very impressive opening drive that included converting a 4th down play to march 13 plays and consume over 6 minutes. But CLT was unable to get into the endzone and had to settle for a 36 yard field goal and a 3-0 lead. FAU marched right back in 6 plays for a go ahead TD and a 7-3 lead. CLT went on another impressive 11 play drive but was stopped on a 4th and 3 play turning the ball back to FAU. FAU needed another 6 plays to complete a 21 yard pass for another TD and a 14-3 lead. CLT went on another long drive, this time of 10 plays with another 4th down conversion, but again, had to settle for a field goal, cutting the FAU lead to 14-6. Then, believe it or not, the teams exchanged punts. After which, FAU would go on its own 10 play TD drive for a 21-6 lead, which is how the game would go to half time.

After some words were exchanged going to the locker room at the half and a personal foul penalty on CLT, CLT had to kick off from its own 20 which set up FAU for its opening drive of the 2H from their own 43. 3 plays laters FAU led 28-6. CLT showed some resolve and answered back with its own TD cutting the lead to 28-13. But that was really their last stand. The FAU defense began to dig in and only yielded another FG to the 49ers, eventually building up a larger lead and going on to win 38-16.

Post Game
After the game, as we were headed out of the stadium, Jay flagged us down and introduced us to someone that he ran into during the course of the game…Clark Humble, College Football Super Fan. Clark has accomplished what we have been seeking, he has seen a game at them all and is working his way around again, to new stadiums, and revisits. Needless to say, we spent some time swapping stories, including the time Clark was assaulted at a game. Do I need to say that it was at an FSU game and it was by an FSU fan? Of course I don’t. Clearly, we closed the place down. We were there sharing stories until the stadium crew asked us to leave.

But there was no traffic back to the hotel, not that I think there would have been traffic had we left right away.

Saturday Travel
Saturday morning came with an early wakeup call. I feel like we swapped an early wakeup on the front end for an early one on the back end on this trip. We both had 7am flights home. I had the connection in Atlanta while Al had a direct flight. My rationale for the early departure was that I needed to be on my couch for the Florida Georgia game. Turns out that I really didn’t need to be on my couch for that, but I had hope.

After my return, I was able to purchase the shot glass online, but there were not many options and the best option was from Ebay. That is very odd!


The FAU Owls finished the season 4-8, 3-5 in the American Athletic Conference which was good for a tie for 8th place.  This game was their only win in their last 6 games.  There would be no bowl game for the Owls.


The Charlotte 49ers finished the season 3-9, 2-6 in the American Athletic Conference which was good for a tie for 11th place.  There was no bowl game for the 49ers either.

Photo Gallery
For our Charlotte photo album, Please click here. You can view as a collage or run as a slideshow. There are comments to explain what is in the photo but most are self explanatory. Thanks to Google, I can no longer embed the slide show with comments.