News9.com

PHOENIX – It didn't take long for OSU fans to snatch up more than their share of tickets and hotel rooms in the Phoenix area.

And now those fans are turning out in full force, painting the Phoenix area bright orange in the days leading up to the Fiesta Bowl.

"It's been an awesome season," said Jim Mays, an OSU fan from Waurika who made the 13-hour drive for the game. "We're all excited about this and ready to watch them whip Stanford."

The Arizona Grand Hotel has turned into the OSU Alumni Hotel for the weekend, and guest services managers said the influx of orange is one of the most impressive they have seen for the Fiesta Bowl.

Remarkable showings at bowl games are a great thing for a university in multiple ways.

It shows future bowl representatives that the school will travel well for big games, not to mention the obvious advantage a good crowd can give a team on the field.

OSU Alumni Association president Larry Shell said that alumni events at bowl games usually mean an increase in new alumni association members following the games.

And as far-fetched as it might sound to some, OSU representatives have said that there is even a correlation between a school's football success and the number of new student applicants each year.

News 9's Kelly Ogle will be checking in all day from Phoenix and Scottsdale on Monday to bring you the latest happenings leading up to the kickoff of the 41st annual Tostitos Fiesta Bowl as the Cowboys take on Stanford at 7:30 p.m.