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Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- The LSU football team takes the field prior to the first half at NRG Stadium in Houston.


LSU has sold all 25,000 of its allotted tickets for Saturday's AdvoCare Texas Kickoff game vs. BYU in New Orleans, said Stephen Perry, the president of the New Orleans Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Perry joined New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu and several other city officials at a Wednesday afternoon news conference.

The game was originally scheduled to be played at Houston's NRG Stadium, but it was moved to the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans after Hurricane Harvey devastated parts of Texas.

Landrieu, Superdome and hospitality officials pointed out the role reversal from 12 years ago, when Houston welcomed New Orleans residents "with open arms" after Hurricane Katrina.

"This is an opportunity for us to repay the favor," said Doug Thornton, senior vice president of SMG, which manages the Superdome.

City officials have called on residents to donate to those who suffered during Harvey through the Pay It Forward Fund, a program being administered by the Greater New Orleans Foundation.

"After Katrina we got help from everywhere, across the country and across the world. No state was more welcoming of our citizens post-Katrina than the state of Texas," GNOF President and CEO Andy Kopplin said. "We're calling on all the citizens of our region to do the same, open up our hearts, our homes and our wallets to give them a boost in their moment of need and crisis."

The press conference also served as an opportunity for city officials to reassure potential visitors that the city, which was spared any damage or flooding from Harvey, would be ready for both the game and the gay community's Southern Decadence festival this weekend.

Another bloc of tickets are on sale to the general public via Ticketmaster. Prices range from $40 to $215 per ticket. Parking will be available only on game day for $40 per space.

Before the game was moved, LSU had sold about 23,000 of its 25,000 allotted tickets, school officials said. BYU had sold out its allotment of 9,400, but it's unclear how many tickets the school has sold since the game was moved to New Orleans.

Kickoff is 8:30 p.m. Saturday.