Michigan's Answer to Late-Arriving Students: General Admission Seating for Football Games

April 23, 2013 at 1:33p    by Jason Priestas    
29 Comments
Michigan Students don't really give two shits about football, it appears

In recent years, Michigan students settled into a pattern of arriving to their seats for football games, leading to empty rows well after opening kickoffs. Michigan's athletic department took note and announced new football ticket policies Tuesday, including the introduction of general admission seating for students:

New this season is that all student seating will be GENERAL ADMISSION. This change in policy from reserved seating was put in place as the student section is the driving force behind our home field advantage and we need students to get there early and often to create a loud and full student section for kickoff.

Next up on the athletic department's agenda: Mandatory key checking stations to ensure the Big House's most potent weapon, rabid key rattling, continues to be a deterrent for opponents facing third-and-long situations.


29 Comments

Comments

omahabeef1337's picture

I wish OSU did this. Get the students that care more closer to the field.

NoVA Buckeye's picture

Block O has general admission for those with Block O seating. It rewards people that set up the cards in the mornings and those who make it there early.

The offseason begins when your season ends. Even then there are no days off.

omahabeef1337's picture

30,000 seat student section(s) and only two are general admission.

UrbzRenewal's picture

Eventually this will happen with the entire south stands. There are rumblings of a grand plan to make the entire south end general student seating.

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

So is that how empty the stadium looks without Ohio State fans there?

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

BuckeyeVet's picture

Touche'

"Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read."          - Groucho Marx

 

Grant Edgell's picture

Any idea if they have an answer for this yet? Under the circumstances I thought it meant to get trucked by El Guapo for 146 yards but wasn't sure.

gobucks96's picture

How do you come up with those signals for a defense?!?! Wait. Don't answer that question...

BuckeyeInOrlando's picture

He was meditating one day, and the signals just came to him.

Grant Edgell's picture

You spelled masturbating wrong.

MN Buckeye's picture

I hear he is a good recruiter . . .

BME_Buckeye's picture

Great idea. Now they can make sure all students are in the stands before the OSU game. That way they can experience defeat for all four quarters vs. whenever they show up. They can even show the most dedicated and loyal students disappointment on television making it easier for the camera guys to find them.... Sarcasm font
Seriously, this is a good idea. Reward those who want to come before kick off with better seats. I am surprised though that a school like UM would have problems like this within their student section. 
 

Look closely, because the closer you think you are, the less you will actually see.

 

Hello_Heisman's picture

For some of the lower quality games, it usually takes until a couple minutes after the game has started before the stadium is completely full.  When I was at Michigan, I always took that as a sign of arrogance/over confidence.  In most weeks it was usually a foregone conclusion that Michigan was going to win, so the fans didn't have quite the same sense of urgency in arriving early and in full throttle as they did against the high quality opponents like OSU or ND. 
After the disaster that was the RichRod era, why this trend continues to be the case is beyond me.  As a fan, I got so shellshocked from losing to the likes of Toledo, NW, and Purdue from 08-10 that I've been a lot more invested in those types of games over the last couple years than I ever was in college.  I would think a lot of other Michigan fans would have a similar take - we basically took for granted several consecutive decades of success and had to learn to be humble during the RichRod years. 
I've been to the stadium post RichRod and the crowds do seem more lively, much more aggressive/active when I was in school.  And clearly something must be working right because they're undefeated there the past 2 years.  But for whatever reason, the crowds are still not very punctual.

60% of the time it works.....every time

BME_Buckeye's picture

I think that happens everywhere. I know at Wisconsin, my friend tells me about the same problems they have their. Students show up late and the student section isn't filled until the 2nd quarter. I'm not sure how much of this has to do with early games (going out on a friday night to get up and prepare for a noon game is early), drinking, team support or arrogance but Michigan isn't the only one. Even when they were good they still had students show up late. I think its also reasonable to understand that most students only go to big time games and don't go to the others thus selling tickets. 
When I was in school not to long ago, I would go to about two games and sell the other three of four tickets to games I thought we'd win or Big Time games to draw even with cost for tickets1 so I could go to games for free. This typically allowed others to take my tickets and sneak their friends into their section which created empty pockets of students around the stadium as others were overcrowded. This may or may not happen at Michigan. 
Maybe at Michigan as the team success goes so does the students. Notwithstanding, having this General Admission policy in place only makes things better for those who are loyal. Either do that or spread the students out in the stadium. I believe that's what OSU has done but some how they still have block O. 
1Sold my USC and Penn State tickets for $350 (all together) while paying $169 for student tickets. I'm even and I got to go to some free games + beer money. 

Look closely, because the closer you think you are, the less you will actually see.

 

M Man's picture

I wondered about that particular picture, which looks awful.
I see from the surroundings that it is not only before any kickoff (looks like 14:50 before the national anthem), but it is before the band comes out.  It has been a noticeable problem in a few games; mostly the early starts.
A couple of years ago, Michigan actually increased the number of student tickets.  I think that maybe the number should be reduced.  There is a sizable paid-subscription waiting list for season tickets for civilians. 
Michigan student section seating is already de facto "general admission," in that people can find almost anyplace within their section without a body in the way and park themselves there.  And so I don't know how a general admission policy helps to get students there any earlier.

TheShookster's picture

If nothing else works, the local Walmarts can always change their hours on Saturday.

Hello_Heisman's picture

I'm a big fan of this as well.  When I was at UM in the 90's, we were always pissed that the student seats were not GA.  Most kids at the time would just treat the seats like GA - whoever got to the game first sat in the front row of the student section, regardless of what the face of the ticket said.  Initially, this wasn't a big deal but over time, the ushers became more and more anal about enforcing seat assignments.  This became really annoying because it penalized the die hard fans who would show up 3 hours before game time in favor of the fair weather students who would show up 5 minutes into the first quarter and were barely interested in following the game. 
The student seats are generally in some of the crappiest viewing angles of the stadium anyway (end zone extending out to about the 20 yard line) - the whole point of that section isn't to protect someone's exact seating assignment, it's to make a ton of noise to rattle the opponent and fire up the home team.  If you live on campus and can't be bothered to show up on time to the games, then you should absolutely be forced to sit in the nose bleed seats and feel shame. 
 

60% of the time it works.....every time

omahabeef1337's picture

Had season tickets at OSU for five years. I would have loved the twenty yard line. The best I had, I think, was almost the goal line 30 rows off field or so.

Hello_Heisman's picture

Damn, that's rough.  By the time I was a senior, I had seats somewhere between the 15 and the 20 yard line.  Probably about 30-40 rows off the field.  At Michigan Stadium though, 40 rows off the field isn't a bad thing.  In the lower section, there's not a steep incline from row to row so if you're sitting in the first 20 rows, you can barely see the action on the field. 

60% of the time it works.....every time

gobucks96's picture

and, this policy will go away once the first stampede occurs...

M Man's picture

You're thinking of Wisconsin, right?  The 1993 stampede that left dozens injured?
And at Madison (Central Time zone), they have had quite a few 11 am starts for early tv.  Their student sections have been half-empty through the end of the first quarter.  I understand that they have gone to some form of general admission at Camp Randall, despite the infamous 1993 stampede.  A win over Michigan will make some B1G fans do some crazy things.
And yet, because their students have been showing up late, they went to a General Admission program in the north end student section of Camp Randall.  I don't understand how it will get the entire section filled up on time for kickoff, and I don't think it really has worked as hoped.

gobucks96's picture

Madison and some concerts..
 
I think some big time games/tickets might have the powers that be rethink this decision...
(refraining from multiple options at digs on my statements...)

Sarah's picture

Well now I know none of you commenters read my Skull Session today :/

Buckeyevstheworld's picture

I read it. Do I get a treat? I prefer brownies.

"YOLO" = I'm about to do something extremely ignorant/stupid & I need an excuse to do it.

toad1204's picture

I did but fail to care about this article due to the fact it matters one day out of the year.  I hope they keep all those kids in that corner, that's where they belong for making bad life choices. 
I'm guessing you will have to be clad in Corn and Smurf if you choose to sit in the student area much like the basketball games?

Nothing like dancing on the field in 02... 

gobucks96's picture

busted... I shall get my noggin over to the skull session.

ShowThemOhiosHere's picture

I don't know how much a new policy will change student's attitudes.  The diehards will show up on time regardless, and those that don't care so much will show up late regardless.  If they don't care to be there on time, then why do they care where they sit?  If they care where they sit, then they will care about what time they arrive.
I've watched games from the top row of the Shoe, so closeness to the field is not a high priority for me.  However, I always show up early.  I absolutely have to be there in time for the band to come out, and I can't recall a time where I wasn't.  I would feel like I failed or missed something major if I wasn't.  But that's just me.  I love the bands...probably more than the average fan.  Plus, given the Big House's layout vs. the Shoe's layout, the higher seats up there could be worse than the higher seats at the Shoe.

Class of 2010.

bux_booster's picture

I would love to see the students arrive earlier. I do feel though that the section in the soutch stands is fantastic and the pregame cali's between the students and the players has really helped. How would this affect the pregame liquid libation rituals of the students?  Will this cut down on the drunkeness during the games (good).  What about students that want to sell their seats?  Would this GA seating lower the value of their tickets as non-students may be hesitant to buy them?  I know that much of my "4th meals" in winter were paid from the proceeds of my sale of my students tickets in Fall.
I am more suspecting of the non-students that arrive late.  Albeit most of the empty seats are in the far reaches of the stadium hugging the press box.  I think the university should drop the price in half for those seats with limited views.
Thanks heavens for 11W to get us through the FB off season...

NoVA Buckeye's picture

I was late to Purdue because I had a 5 AM shift at my old job... God was I absolutely dead the entire game...

The offseason begins when your season ends. Even then there are no days off.