CHESTNUT HILL MA - SEPTEMBER 04: Boston College Eagles fans cheer on their team against the Weber State Wildcats on September 4 2010 at Alumni Stadium in Chestnut Hill Massachusetts. Boston College defeated Weber State 38-20. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Brian: The Flynn Fund is having a fire sale on 2011 donor-based seating and football parking, offering discounts of up to HALF of what packages normally cost.
A parking spot and full tailgating privileges on Shea Field used to cost you $3,500 and more ... this year? Packages start at a mere $1,7500.
Want to tailgate in the Beacon Street Garage, sans grills or open flames, of course? That'll run you $1,250 or more, half off the $2,500 regular price. Comm Ave. Garage parking? Prices have been slashed to $750. Brighton Campus? A mere $250 ...
Want to sit in Sections S, Q and C? Well that will only cost you an extra $325 a seat ...
Of course, these deep discounts on donor-based seating and tailgating packages probably mean that the Athletics Department is struggling to sell football season tickets for 2011. A big part of that is due to the fact that BC is coming off a 7-6 season. Another reason is the fact that the 2011 schedule features just 6 home games. The home slate is unfortunately nothing to write home about: Northwestern, UMass, N.C. State, Wake Forest, Duke and Florida State (on a Thursday night).
Your one marquee home opponent is on a Thursday night, making it difficult for out of town fans and alumni to get to. The rest of the schedule includes three North Carolina schools that don't have much football cache (discounting the Spaz Super Bowl vs. TOB a bit here ... humor me), a Division I-AA school and Northwestern, who despite stringing together some decent seasons in the Big Ten recently, isn't much of a name-brand when it comes to college football.
So who is to blame for weak 2011 ticket sales? The AD for setting up the non-conference schedule in a year when the ACC home schedule is particularly weak? Syracuse, for backing out of its contract with BC in 2011 and 2012? The economy? The ACC? A little bit of everything? Your thoughts?
Jeff: A little bit of blame is deserved on everything you mention. Certainly the economy and the economics of BC football tickets gives no one any motivation to buy season tickets this season just so they can be sure to have them next year when the schedule is better. At many other schools and at BC at times in the past, you might hang on to tickets on season just so you can be sure that you get the same tickets the next year. Everyone knows that getting tickets to any single game this year will not be an issue nor will getting good season tickets next year be an issue.
The ACC as a collective group of football programs -- not the administrators -- is to blame for not being more competitive the last few seasons. As a result, games against teams like N.C. State and Wake Forest are not as attractive of a matchup for fans as we envisioned them being when we first joined the league.
Playing Syracuse this season would also help ticket sales quite a bit because fans would know that if they needed to get rid of some tickets, plenty of BC fans and Syracuse fans combined would be interested in going to the game and it would be an easy ticket to get rid of.
The Florida State game on Thursday night also helped no one. If the N.C. State game had been moved to Thursday then suddenly that game would have been a more attractive matchup while it devalued the FSU game somewhat because that would've sold out any day of the week and the weekend is better for out of towners to make it.
But most importantly, GDF is to blame because he has known for a long time that Duke, Wake Forest, N.C. State and FSU were the home slate in the ACC for us this year. You can't count on any of those teams other than FSU to create buzz so you need to find a way to bring a name to Alumni, even if that had meant a 2-1 series where we travel twice in other years. He also could've cut prices last season when it was really a stretch to keep DBS seating at full price and ticket prices at their high levels for season ticket holders.