SAN DIEGO -- San Diego State University students began lining up Wednesday to get their hands on the 2,500 general admission student tickets available for Saturday's men's basketball showdown with Brigham Young University.

The tickets won't be handed out until Friday at 4 p.m.

Ronnie Brown was the first in line outside the Viejas Arena ticket office at 6:30 a.m., and has since been joined by groups of students.

"I pass time by reading books and people watching ," Brrown said.

The students say working together in groups allows them to attend class and handle other matters before re-claiming their spot in line, and cover for others in the group who leave temporarily.

"If you're not in class, you should be here saving spots in line,'' Abigail Goode said, another student camping out.

Other students were splitting their gatherings between the ticket office and the Viejas Arena gate, which is scheduled to open at 9:30 a.m. Saturday -- 90 minutes ahead of the contest, which will be nationally televised on CBS.

Camping out for basketball tickets is typical at hoops hotbeds like Duke University, but is only a recent phenomenon in San Diego, where the Aztecs have compiled a best-ever record of 27-1 and climbed to a No. 6 national ranking.

Excitement for the game also extended to City Hall, where Mayor Jerry Sanders encouraged San Diegans to wear red and black, the school's colors, on Friday, when a downtown rally is scheduled for 10 a.m.

City Councilman Kevin Faulconer, an SDSU alumnus, placed a sign in his office window that reads "Brigham Down Aztecs!''

The Aztecs are seeking to avenge their only loss of the season in the game against the No. 7 Cougars.