SBD/July 8, 2014/Colleges

Virginia Tech's Babcock Says Current Stance Is Not To Add Alcohol Sales At Athletic Events

Babcock does not believe selling alcohol is the right fit for VT
Virginia Tech AD Whit Babcock last week stressed that he "has no plans to introduce the sale of beer or liquor at Hokies’ venues at this point and questioned whether the concept would be right for Tech’s rural, community-oriented campus," according to Mike Barber of the RICHMOND TIMES-DISPATCH. Babcock: "I don’t want our fans to think that they’re going to see beer vendors going up and down the aisles of Lane Stadium. I don’t believe that’s the right fit for Virginia Tech. ... Most places, if they do it at all, seem to do it in contained and controllable areas like club levels. We do not do that at Virginia Tech and I’m not proposing that at this time. I think if you do see schools go in that direction, a lot of them probably won’t go as far as Cincinnati and West Virginia." He added, "I want to be clear and say, at Virginia Tech, that’s not something that’s anywhere at the top of my list. I think the industry’s headed that way. But as far as Virginia Tech, no, that’s not my recommendation at this time. And I don’t know, it may never be. I have a lot of other things to work on" (RICHMOND TIMES-DISPATCH, 7/5).

STAYING DRY: Wyoming AD Tom Burman last week said that in terms of introducing alcohol sales at school sporting events, revenue "won't flow in on a river of suds." Burman in a statement said, "We have not actively discussed with our campus administration serving beer in our venues. We understand that this is something some schools have added recently, but at this time I don’t see that as an option." In Wyoming, Mike Vorel wrote UW's athletic department "could certainly use another revenue stream." The dilemma of whether to add alcohol sales "comes down to money." After all the costs associated with "selling beer in its venues, plus the likely addition of extra security to overlook the situation, would UW make enough of a profit to make the venture worthwhile?" Right now, that is "impossible to say." But by "looking at similar cases in the past five years, the outlook is promising" (Casper STAR-TRIBUNE, 7/6).

GIVE A HOOT: West Palm Beach-based WPEC-CBS' Lauren Hills reported Florida Atlantic Univ. is "looking at whether it should relax the rules and allow designated spots inside the stadium for beer sales." Some students said that "relaxing the alcohol restrictions beyond the gates could actually encourage more people to come to the games." FAU "has not said when it'll make a decision on the matter" (CBS12.com, 7/2).
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