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Sports passes provide students profit

Published: Friday, October 19, 2012

Updated: Friday, October 19, 2012 01:10

Sports passes

File Photo

Students line up in the hot sun outside of Kyle Field to pull tickets for the first home game against Florida.

31,000 people pack into the east side of Kyle Field, making it the largest student ticket allotment in the country. But the cost to sit in the student section dubbed the nation’s largest has risen at the ticket window as well as through unofficial, individual sales.

Students can acquire a ticket in more than one way, including borrowing or buying a sports pass from another student. Some students are making a profit from such transactions, especially leading up to Saturday’s game against LSU.

Mark Womack, SGA representative to the athletic council and international affairs graduate student, said sports passes have always been sold but only recently have they been sold at such high costs.

“I remember buying one for my brother before he was a student at A&M for the 2007 t.u. game,” Womack said. “The difference between now and then is putting them online for massive mark ups. That has increased a lot.”

The cost to buy an all-sports pass from 12th Man Foundation is $350, $25 more than last year. Texas A&M has one of the highest priced all-sports passes in the
nation. University of Texas students can pay $150 for a guaranteed seat, and University
of Arkansas students pay $85 for an
all-sports pass.

The price of a sports pass at A&M is affected by the amount of student
seats allotted.

Carole Dollins, senior vice president of ticketing at 12th Man Foundation, said student tickets at A&M are half the price of a regular ticket for the Foundation to break even.

“We provide the largest block of student tickets in the country,” Dollins said. “In terms of making the revenue numbers match, students need to pay half.”

Junior computer science major Ryan Finke sold his sports pass for the
LSU game.

“The only sports pass I have ever sold is for the LSU game and I sold it to a fellow student,” he said. “I sold it for $150.”

Ryan Finke said he sold the ticket because he didn’t want to go to the game this weekend, as well as had the opportunity to make back money originally spent on the sports pass.

Junior biology major Jill Allen said it is wrong for students to sell their sports passes for outrageous amounts.

“I think that we are all Aggies, and sometimes we forget that, in the spirit of things, that being a part of the 12th Man is not something you can put a price on,” Allen said.

Senior political science major Grant Kingsbery said it is easy to make a profit from selling sports passes.

“Honestly, if you are a student here, you have every right in the world to do what you want with your sports pass,”

Kingsbery said.

Alan Cannon, associate athletic director for media relations, said the reason the cost of sports passes has recently increased is because demand is higher than ever.

“These last two years are the first years that we have had to curtail the allotment for student season tickets,” Cannon said.

According to 12th Man Foundation, last year marked the highest average attendance at Kyle Field with an average of 87,183 for the 2011 season — almost 4,500 more fans than the previous record set in 2001.

Sophomore sports management major Caleb De La Rosa said students did not realize that sports pass holders can buy guest passes without buying another student’s sports pass.

“I had no idea that you could do that until now,” De La Rosa said. “I don’t think that was communicated very well at all, especially to former students.”

Dollins said sports pass owners could purchase a second ticket for a guest since Monday for $100. Guest tickets are sometimes reserved for sale Fridays.

“What separates Texas A&M from everyone else is the 12th Man,” Cannon said. “When you consider 31,000 standing in support of your football team, that’s why the University and the athletic department want to keep it that way.”

 

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