UConn's Rentschler Field Suffers Biggest Losses Since '03
Rentschler Field is "facing its largest loss since opening" in '03, as UConn football crowds have "plummeted, cutting into sales of food, drinks and parking," according to Kenneth Gosselin of the HARTFORD COURANT. The stadium is "rushing toward" $1M in losses for FY '19, "nearly double the loss the previous year." Annual football attendance since '14 has "plunged by nearly 100,000, to 58,047" in '19, a six-game average of 9,675. UConn AD David Benedict "pledged to work" with the Capital Regional Development Authority to "boost revenues and cut costs." UConn pays $172,000 in rent per game, "plus a $3-a-ticket surcharge." The school is "responsible for paying the first $250,000 of overall operating losses at the stadium." Rentschler "does not receive money from the state for operations unless there is a loss beyond" that $250,000, but in FY '20, the state "will likely have to find $762,000 to cover the balance of the deficit." Concessions are expected to bring in $400,000 this year, "about $100,000 less than expected," and parking fees pulled in $130,000, "almost half of what was expected." FY '18-19 was a "strong one for booking additional athletic events," including USWNT and USMNT soccer matches, NCAA lacrosse tournament action and USL Hartford Athletic games. But CRDA Venue Dir Kimberly Hart said that "there have not been any bookings of additional athletic events" in the current FY (HARTFORD COURANT, 2/8).