September 7, 2016
Does the top NCAA ticket deliver value?
Notre Dame has a history unlike any other in college football. Their pigskin heroes have reached legendary status. Legendary, because it’s been decades since the players wearing the storied Golden Domes have been a real contender. Even the salad days of the 80s and early 90s, when it seemed like either the Irish or the Miami Hurricanes were playing for a title every year seems like a distant memory.
So why can Notre Dame get away with being the top ticket price in college football? With an average ticket hit of $335 on the secondary market, Notre Dame home games make for an expensive Saturday afternoon’s entertainment.
This is more than 17 percent higher than the next highest mark – at Ohio State, and both OSU and ND are higher than perennial powerhouse and recent national champion Alabama, whose average ticket price clocks in around $142…actually down in price compared to last year.
Surprisingly, neither of these venues will command the highest single game ticket of the year. That crown goes to Oklahoma, which will host Ohio State with an average ticket price of more than $524. Again, these are resold ticket prices, not those sold by the stadiums or the teams. In other words, it’s a seller’s market and demand is what keeps these ticket prices sky high.
But is the entertainment value delivering on the demand? On the surface, it seems strange to drop half a mortgage payment for a couple tickets to watch something you would enjoy more comfortably at home. But college football isn’t really about strict entertainment value. It’s about being part of the action, and the best way to do that is to watch it live.
For many fans just being able to say they were At That Game is worth major bragging rights. They remember stories growing up from friends and family members who saw memorable games, and they want their shot at being part of immortality.
For others, the energy in the stadium is a high in and of itself. Just being a part of the rocking, raging organism that is a college football crowd is an amazing experience. Something fans will pay just about anything to experience. The stories are just the icing on the cake.