AUSTIN (KXAN) — Since appearing in the 2009 National Championship game, the Texas Longhorns have failed to reach the 10-win mark that became almost a given over the previous ten seasons. As the team’s success on the football field has fallen, so too has the demand for tickets.
But a new coaching regime might be the cure to both.
“You have a new coach, everyone is pumped up, and the prices are up for that,” said Randy Cohen, the CEO at Austin based online ticket broker Ticket City. The average sale price for tickets sold on Ticket City is up 20% for this year’s home opener compared to last year. As of Friday, the median sale price for the entire season, including road and neutral site games, is up 27% over last year.
Of course, that average could drop or rise depending on how the Longhorns perform on the field. And despite Ticket City seeing an increase in demand, Texas Box Office still had 7,000 tickets remaining for the opener against North Texas.
Earlier in the week, Texas Defensive Coordinator Vance Bedford issued somewhat of a challenge to fans after being informed of the unsold tickets.
“Everybody out there, get off your duff, and go buy these tickets,” he jokingly urged fans. “There should be 105,000 people with fire marshals there saying ‘get out!’”
But a recent Wall Street Journal study showed student section attendance at college football games is down across the country. The study attributed the declining in student showing to increased prices, more television exposure, and a loss of many rivalry games.
“I’m definitely tuning in when it comes on,” said University of Texas sophomore Sean Woods. “But I couldn’t afford the ticket package this year. It seemed a little excessive.”
The UT “Big Ticket” package offered to students gets them a reserved ticket to all home games for $175 plus a $20 transaction fee, however adding each accompanying season ticket would cost an additional $405.
“With the books and the parking permits, the least they can do is give us a little cut for the football games,” said Woods.
19,000 tickets are allotted for the student section each year. As of mid-afternoon on Friday, a little more than 17,000 had been sold for the home opener.
Some other ticket figures from Ticket City:
- The most demanded Texas home game ticket is the October 4th game against Baylor.
- Currently the most expensive ticket to begin the season is the Texas-OU game (average price $302.) The second most expensive ticket is the Texas-UCLA game at AT&T Stadium on September 13th ($147.)
- The average price for a Texas A&M Aggies home game is $115, compared to $107 for the average Longhorn home game price.