Ball State football playing on ESPN2 the day after Halloween means one thing: college students in full costume, hoping to get on national television for five seconds of post-commercial glory.

Ahead of the game against No. 17 Western Michigan, here are some suggestions to deal with the costume policy released by Ball State Athletics for the game.

1. Masks or other costume pieces that in any way obscure the face are strongly discouraged. Attendees may be asked to remove their mask to reveal their face prior to admission.

Ball State-specific costumes

Charlie Cardinal: wear red and make a beak out of a toilet paper roll and yellow paint/highlighter.

Head coach Mike Neu: toss a pair of headphones on over a Ball State cap.

Beneficence: throw on a toga/bedsheets and some wings. For added realism, stand behind couples and flap the wings if they kiss.

Frog Baby: follow the tradition by letting a friend pick out the outfit.

Shuttle bus driver: make a steering wheel from a paper plate to salute the unsung heroes of Fall and Winter.

Ball State already has more wins (4) than it did all of last season (3), so there's no need for Cardinals fans to cover their faces with paper bags anymore.

But if a costume requires a mask, there's usually an easy way to tweak it so that it works with an exposed face.

For example, instead of putting on a Barack Obama mask and dressing as the president of the United States, go to the game dressed as former Ball State president Paul Ferguson.

Hopefully, the no-mask rule has an exception for Charlie Cardinal.

2. Fans are advised that bulky clothing and/or costumes will result in delays at security screening outside the stadium.

Again, it looks like Charlie Cardinal (Chuck? Never-mind, let's keep this professional) might need an exception.

Still, if people enjoyed waiting in line, then a trip to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles would be a classy date and TSA pre-check wouldn't be a thing.

"Bulky" is a bit of a subjective term, though, so have a friend dress as a lawyer and argue with security guards on behalf of the baggy pants that complete the MC Hammer costume.

Alternatively, borrow some tights and dress as Peter Pan or a ballerina. 

3. Costumes must fit within the confines of the fan's ticketed seat

What exactly are the confines of a bleacher seat?

Scheumann Stadium seats 22,500, but the average crowd is just 9,630 -- and that number tends to drop when the mid-week games start. That's a lot of empty seats, and if everyone wore an inflatable sumo wrestler suit, the stadium might look full on national television.

If anything, this is less of a separate guideline than it is a re-enforcement of the "bulky clothing" rule.

Ironically skinny costumes are a good way to go here— Fat Albert on a diet, a glass of Kool-Aid instead of the full-sized Kool-Aid man or the hipster version of anything can help fans save space.

4. Toy or replica weapons are prohibited from entry

Good. The weapons ban makes an upset much more likely since Western Michigan won't be allowed to bring its explosive offense, which ranks sixth in the nation with 44.4 points per game, into the stadium.

But if a sword is absolutely necessary to complete a Viking outfit or something, consider this alternative.

5. Any item deemed to be unsafe and/or offensive will not be allowed into Scheumann Stadium.

This one is pretty straightforward — stay away from the obvious racially insensitive or homophobic costumes.

Now, if we're talking about a costume that's an inside joke — say, one person dressing up as a wall with a friend wearing a fake cast — then by all means, go for it.

6. No couples costumes

OK, fine — this one isn't real. I'm just tired of seeing so many people dressed up as Mickey and Minnie, Harley Quinn and the Joker or the couple from Grease.

Rules one through five, however, are real guidelines put forth by the athletic department. So to avoid any hassle, be sneaky about breaking follow them.