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SBD/October 18, 2013/CollegesPrint All
LSU on Thursday announced that it is "planning to raise football ticket prices for next season and baseball prices" for '15, but the timing of the news "wasn’t the best considering there were 15,000 no-shows for the Tigers’ game against Florida last Saturday in Tiger Stadium," according to a front-page piece by Les East of the Baton Rouge ADVOCATE. The plan, which also "includes greater flexibility in pricing, will be presented to the LSU Board of Supervisors for approval at its meeting Oct. 25." It calls for "increases to the Tradition Fund, a surcharge on prime season tickets" on more than 50,000 '14 football ticket packages and for tickets and parking for the '15 baseball season. This would be the first price increase for baseball since '09. The proposal also calls for a 6% increase in season-ticket prices "from the previous season as well as an increase to the Tradition Fund for reserved parking on campus for cars and RVs." The plan "will see the pricing structure for Tiger Stadium adjusted to allow for more flexibility in future pricing based on seat location and demand as well as the opponent and date of the game." It "would allow LSU to adjust prices for particular dates that are less attractive, such as the day after Thanksgiving game and other day games scheduled in advance" (Baton Rouge ADVOCATE, 10/18). LSU AD Joe Alleva said of the price hikes, "The amount of increase when proportioned over a four or five year period of time is really not that much. I hate to do it, but we need to do it to compete" (New Orleans TIMES-PICAYUNE, 10/18).
Univ. of Maryland men's basketball coach Mark Turgeon hopes that Friday's Maryland Madness event at Cole Field House, which stopped hosting games in '02 when Comcast Center opened, "could be a dry run for his ultimate dream of hosting one game each winter break" at the old arena, according to Alex Prewitt of the WASHINGTON POST. Turgeon said of Cole becoming a permanent home for the event, "It’s a no-brainer. It’s an absolute no-brainer." He said that creating a season-ticket solution is the "last remaining hurdle to clear, besides several facility upgrades like ensuring the scoreboard, seats and bathrooms are 'up to code.'" Turgeon: "There’s a lot of things they’d have to do." Still, the idea "sounds closer to reaching reality than he may admit." UM, either way, "expects a sellout crowd" on Friday night for an alumni game, autograph session, player intros and scrimmage (WASHINGTONPOST.com, 10/16).
NO GRUDGE: ACC Commissioner John Swofford on Wednesday said that there is "no ill will" between the conference and UM, "despite lawsuits that are pending between the school and the league" pertaining to UM's exit fee after joining the Big Ten. Swofford: "I wish them well. I hope that it turns out to be a good decision for the people of Maryland." In Baltimore, Don Markus notes Swofford "downplayed any acrimony, and strongly rejected the suggestion that the reason neither Duke nor North Carolina will be playing this season in College Park in men's basketball stemmed from Maryland’s decision to bail on a league that it helped found" in '53. He said that the ACC will treat the school "no differently than any other team" (Baltimore SUN, 10/18).
Michigan State AD Mark Hollis' devotion to the school "can't be denied," and while he "probably could cash a bigger paycheck somewhere else ... this is home," according to Matt Charboneau of the DETROIT NEWS, which profiled Hollis and Michigan AD Dave Brandon on successive days. MSU "is Mark Hollis, and he proves it every day." When MSU hosted Indiana last Saturday, it was a day "filled with handshakes, pictures, jabs at a few folks wearing Michigan gear." But while that is a busy day for most, it is "just another day at the office" for Hollis (DETROIT NEWS, 10/17).
BRANDON THE PERFECTIONIST: In Detroit, Angelique Chengelis profiles Brandon as a "perfectionist." Football is the "cash cow for Michigan athletics, and fine-tuning every detail on a gameday" that brings in upward of $6M every home game is when Brandon is "at his best." From something as "mundane as checking the water temperature in the visitor’s locker room showers, to indulging superstitions, to testing concession food, and everything in-between, Brandon’s day is full of housekeeping work and troubleshooting." Brandon's wife, Jan, "takes care of all things in the athletic director’s suite, from the food to the décor." Michigan Stadium's student section, which has taken a general-admission approach this season, "hasn't been perfect," and the student body president this week "released a statement that the students will have more input" before the '14 season. But Brandon believes that he "had to do something with so many no-shows at kickoffs last season" (DETROIT NEWS, 10/18).