Football fans can report unruly behavior with text messages at USM

The following is a press release from The University of Southern Mississippi:

Fans attending Saturday's football game between The University of Southern Mississippi and Prairie View A&M can report any disruptive or suspicious behavior right from their seats at M.M. Roberts Stadium.

Through the Guest Assist text messaging system, fans may use their cell phones to initiate an instant conversation with command center personnel at Roberts Stadium. Here's how the system works: a fan in need of assistance will text the key word "usm" followed by 78247. The request is instantly routed to the Guest Assist web-based communications center and dispatched to appropriate stadium security personnel.

"Guest Assist gives the fans the comfort of added security but it also lends itself to answer any questions or concerns fans may have such as parking situations, specific location, medical needs, handicap requests and important weather alerts," said Rickey Bradley, project coordinator at The National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security at Southern Miss. "This means our fans are happier and can focus on the event."

Bradley also points out that the Guest Assist system helps encourage fan participation because those attending "don't necessarily feel intimidated by becoming involved."

The text messaging system is also scheduled for use during Southern Miss basketball games at Reed Green Coliseum and baseball games at Pete Taylor Park.

Kickoff for Saturday's football home opener is set for 6 p.m. To view an example of the Guest Alert system in action, go to For more information about the system contact Bradley at 601.266.6183.