Thursday, July 17, 2008

The Soaring Price of SEC Tickets

The average Southeastern Conference ticket price — including the minimum donations required for the right to purchase season tickets — has increased 80% since 1998, from $61.07 to $110.05, according to an analysis by Jon Solomon of the Birmingham News.

Alabama ($50.71) and Auburn ($50) have the highest average face-value prices in 2008, but eight SEC teams require a minimum donation just for the right to purchase season tickets, up from six teams in 1998. Example: Florida charges only $224 for seasons tickets, but getting them requires a $4,200 donation.

So not only are SEC fans paying exorbitant prices just to see a game, they continue to get a watered-down product as league teams embrace the practice of scheduling cupcakes in nonconference play. See the evidence here and here.

The excuse for doing this is that the league schedule is too demanding, but couldn't all Division I-A teams start playing each other and eliminate the need for nonconference cupcake scheduling? Teams from the Big Ten and SEC — regarded for some reason as the top power conferences — seldom meet in the regular season. Why?

Back to the SEC. ... One would think the league's fans would be outraged paying ridiculous prices for season tickets that include two or three "scrimmage" games against lower-level Division I-A teams, or — worse yet — I-AA opponents.

Now we understand why SEC teams don't want to travel for nonconference games. It would cost them a bundle.

This virus has now spread to other conferences and you, the hard-working fan, deserve better.
Click the charts for an enlarged view.


Anonymous said...

Just out of curiosity, what is it that you have against the SEC. No offense intended, but you are starting to sound like you are attacking with an agenda.

If the fans are willing to pay these types of prices to go to football games, then the school has the right to charge it. Remember, in the SEC, Football pays for all the other athletics. Just like basketball does in the ACC or for some of the mid-west schools. If fans of say, Washington State or Indiana are not willing to pay these prices for football tickets, than that is the problem of those universities.

And as you sit there and contemplate my SEC bias, I would like to let you know that as I am a fan of an SEC school, I went to a Div-1 college in a Div 1-AA conference that doesn't even have a football team. My loyalty lies there above all else.

gerry dorsey said...

i guess this is why these teams have so many unsold season tickets and empty seats on gamedays. oh wait...that NEVER, EVER HAPPENS!!!

jerry jones thinks these sec ticket prices are genius...and he farts $100 bills.

Kenny said...

I still fail to see the correlation between traveling far away to play out of confrence games and actually playing a strong out of confrence schedule. The fact is teams in the SEC are playing some of the best schedules in the nation.

I am going off the top of my head, but I think Phil Steel had something like 5 or 6 SEC teams in the top 10 for toughest schedule for the upcoming year.

Are there cupcakes in some team's schedule? Yes, I think every team plays some poor competition. I just do not see where the SEC is lagging behind any other confrence in scheduling. There are plenty of good matchups from SEC teams in the upcoming years.

Anonymous said...

Since when is the Big-10 considered a legitimate conference?

Anonymous said...

at uga this year 700 season ticket openings came available. to get tickets a $10,000 donation was needed plus the cost of tickets ($40 per seat face value - 6 home games) that's ridiculous

Al-D said...

I dont know about the other SEC schools but at Florida you can pass the tickets down through family. For example my grandfather had UF tickets on the 50yd line that he started paying $800 a year for in the 60s (a substantial sum then) but was still paying only like $1000 when he passed away in 2004, my dad picked up the tickets at around 1800 a year (they add some % of increase) but if my family released those tickets back into the system they would go only to a "Bull Gator" aka $10,000+ donation a year because of their location. Irregardless, I think the SEC leads the nation in attendence every year and some of the stadiums average over %100 attendence (by cramming extra people into the lux boxes for big games).

scotty said...

supply and demand... college football has morphed into a business venture. Hell, all of college is a business that has students as it's customers.

Brian McCormack said...

The dollars for the Florida tickets in this article are grossly inflated by the assumption that all tickets require a $4200 donation. Read

Brian McCormack

We Are...Penn State email list said...

Teams from the Big Ten and SEC seldom meet in the regular season. Why?

Because SEC teams will almost never agree to play a road game outside the Southeast.

Charlestowne said...

All this 'SEC won't travel' propaganda never takes into account the tie-ins that SEC schools have with non-conferece, local teams. For example, USC-Clemson, Fla-Fla State, Kentucky - Louisville. Not to mention all of our conference teams fall in the same geographical location. This isn't true for other conferences. There is not much inherent Pac10/Big12/Big10 local rivals and many of the schools have to traval significant distances to play other schools in their conference.

This whole debate is being fueled by the desire of some to discredit the SEC in order to justify/argue for some bowl selections.