MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Fears about the Omicron variant of COVID-19 didn’t stop college football fans from attending the Liberty Bowl Tuesday night.

Around 40,000 people filled the AutoZone Liberty Bowl to watch the Mississippi State Bulldogs take on the Texas Tech Red Raiders.

“It’s very exciting. A great day for the dogs,” said Bill Kellum.

Bill Ketchum arrived several hours early to tailgate in the parking lot. The last thing on his mind was the Coronavirus.

“We are all the way vaccinated. So everyone is good here,” said Ketchum.

A sign posted outside the Liberty Bowl encouraged spectators to wear masks outdoors.

Last year, less than 10,000 people attended the Liberty Bowl and this year several bowl games had to be canceled due to COVID-19.

“All of my family is boosted. And I gave no concern whatsoever,” said Bulldogs fan Denny Cox. “I think this Omicron we got to get used to this type of stuff.”

James Craft, who drove from Dallas with his daughter and son-in-law to root on the Red Raiders, though, said he was taking extra precautions.

“We are going to wear masks,” said Craft.

Craft attended the very first Liberty Bowl and this was his first time back.

“I’m a big Red Raider fan,” said Craft.

This year, the big winner of the Liberty Bowl might be the City of Memphis. The Liberty Bowl typically brings tens of millions of dollars into the local economy.

Texas Tech beat Mississippi State with a score of 34-7.