Students angered by increase in ticket prices

Tania Ganguli

Prices for student tickets to Northwestern football games went up from $8 to $15 for single games and from $30 to $40 for season tickets this year.

NU students just don’t understand.

“What is up with that?” Weinberg sophomore Ali Bryson said at the game. “It’s not like we’re selling out every game. Maybe they need the money, but student prices aren’t what they should raise.”

The excitement of the Wildcats’ first home game was at first enough for many students to shell out $15. But Saturday’s 42-17 blowout loss to Minnesota made students like McCormick sophomore Cheick Sanankoua think twice.

“Once it gets to $15, you expect something in return,” Sanankoua said. “I probably won’t go to any more.”

Other students said that the higher prices would not stop them from going to games they would have gone to otherwise, but many said they would be more likely to buy season tickets in the future.

Weinberg sophomore Tom Pichert and his friends painted a purple and white “N” on their faces for the game. Although he doesn’t like the higher prices, Pichert won’t stop going to games.

“We’re still going to come and support our team,” Pichert said. “It’s probably a smart decision, I guess. I mean, last year you could work it out so you almost paid less if you didn’t get season tickets.”

At $8 a ticket, last year’s four home games cost students without season tickets only $2 more than if they had bought season tickets.

The NU athletic department said it will release numbers concerning the amount of student tickets and overall tickets sold later this week.

This is the first time in four years that ticket prices have changed, but NU ticket prices are still lower than rates at most Big Ten schools. Indiana’s is the only cheaper student section at $10 a game.

At Illinois, season tickets for the student section are $66 and each game individually is $17.

The most expensive Big Ten student section is Penn State’s, which costs $145 for tickets to all eight games, but the Nittany Lions student section is sold out for the season.

Student sections at Michigan, Ohio State, Wisconsin and Michigan State are all sold out for the season.

Ohio State students pay $88 a season to sit in the “O-Block” and watch the defending national champions.

“They’re not Ohio State,” McCormick junior Mike Hoaglin said of the Cats. “If they were Ohio State I would pay.”

But McCormick freshman Phyve Carter isn’t asking for a national championship for his money.

“I would have paid for the first quarter,” Carter said. “For a Top-25 team, expensive tickets are OK. Not for a top 100 team.”

Another difference between NU and most other Big Ten schools is that, except for Ohio State, the rest of the Big Ten starts classes in late August, around the time the season starts. NU students arrived with only four home games left.

With season tickets, students who go to all four home games save $5 per game. And the face value on the tickets is printed as seven dollars.

“It would have been nice if they took the prices off,” Carter said. “I can do the math. Seven times four is 28, not 40.”