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Michigan Football, 2021 Season

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  • Penn State had a lot of empty seats for a while. Franklin's pixie dust 2016 saved his ass and pumped new life into the program. But you're right re: Iowa and Wisconsin (except for their degenerate student section). I looked into ticket prices a couple years ago and compared Michigan to Iowa and Michigan State because they all had nearly identical records over the previous 10 years (the latter two with significantly more bowl wins and signature victories).

    Iowa was selling all their tickets for $50 a pop to the lower tier games and they were $75-80 for their "premium" games that were, I think, Minnesota and Wisconsin. But you could also buy youth tickets for anyone 18 and under for $25. $25 to take your kid to a legit Big Ten football game! A family of four could go to Iowa-Purdue for $150 TOTAL. Meanwhile, that's what a lot of individual tickets go for at Michigan for the exact same level product. When I did the math, apples to apples, for comparable opponents, Iowa's price of attending a football game came out to roughly a THIRD of what it costs at Michigan. I even went as far as to search for game tickets and you could get 30 yard line seats about 50 rows up for face value $50 to Big Ten games at Kinnick. Those same seats at Michigan Stadium will start well in excess of $100. Usually, much more depending on opponent.

    MSU had 3 game packs just like Michigan does but theirs included all conference opponents whereas Michigan always throws in a directional MAC school. MSU's marquee game was PSU but you got Illinois and then either Rutgers or Indiana (or something like that). Decent seats were like $150 total for the 3 games. The 3 game deal at Michigan that includes a marquee opponent and 2 tomato cans is around $250-275. Keep in mind this was still in the D'Antoni era.

    So yeah, people have been saying it for years: The bubble is gonna pop eventually. If its true that 19,000 season tickets have not renewed 6 weeks before the season begins, then prepare yourself for pictures of the Big House that look like Doak Walker. Florida and other big time programs have had swaths of empty seats recently, too. And not just student sections.

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    • Texas, come on down!

      Texas.jpg

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      • I spoke with Doug yesterday about plans for the upcoming season. He still has details to work out but he's planning to be there same place on Saturday's. He and T are not enthusiastic at all. Doug is very discouraged by what is happening to college sports and said that with his schedule of gigs increasing and his declining interest in Michigan sports, he's not sure he will continue the tail gate scene going forward.

        He and Sean have similar concerns about COVID safety in the stadium. Not sure either will go in to watch and may just stay at the tailgate site and watch on TV. I have less concern but I'm careful to avoid discussions - each to his own on this one is my motto.
        There is such a thing as redemption. Maybe we're seeing one. We just saw it!!!. M 42, OSU 27. 11/27/21.

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        • 10 minutes before kickoff at the Swamp for Homecoming 2018. Their lowest attended game in decades.

          Florida.jpg

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          • Who could have ever known that charging more than an average car payment for a pair of tickets to a college football game would have an adverse affect on attendance?

            Doug asked me if I wanted to go the game at MSU this year and I declined. I've been to the last 2 there but I just can't justify giving up an entire Saturday and all that entails for this product right now. I'm sure will lose 13-6 in a driving rain storm.
            Last edited by Mike; July 23, 2021, 08:44 AM.

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            • Penn State.jpg

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              • Florida State basically goes through one “Rich Rod slump” and that’s what happens to their stadium. I don’t recall The Big House looking like that in 2008-2010.

                If Michigan… or any football program… was as successful as Ohio State when it comes to wins/ losses…. no issue with selling out the stadium.

                Michigan fans. It’s been mostly disappointing for the last 17 years. Especially for the young crowd that has never seen the glory days of M football.
                Big games. Rivalry games. 1-15 vs Ohio State. I get why fans are turned off. This fanbase is exhausted.
                Add in the fact that most households have nice TVs.
                Makes sense that the attendance could be in trouble.

                Originally posted by lineygoblue View Post
                Harbaugh spoke today in Chicago at the beginning of the Big Ten preseason meetings. Normally, I'd make mention of some his more notable comments, but they're nothing more than the gibberish that he's spoken in the past .

                He did say that McNamara is going into the fall as the leader at QB. JJ is progressing. The kid from Texas, John O'Korn Jr., is "competing".

                He said some stupid crap about beating OSU which doesn't even bear repeating. Its all bullshit.

                Nothing to see here. Keep moving, folks.
                Thank goodness.
                I want to see what McNamara can do when fully healthy. Stud performance vs Rutgers 😂
                2022 AAL - Derrick Barnes
                2021 Weekly Pick'em Champ

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                • If I go to a CFB game this year, it will be in Mt. Pleasant to see the Chips play. General admission tickets are $12 (senior citizen... I qualify for that now) . I'd guess that nearly 80% of the seating at the stadium is general admission. Parking, right next to the stadium, with tailgating allowed, is $20. You can buy a hot dog and a drink for less than $10.

                  The only thing I'd consider with Michigan is attending a game with Doug at his tailgate gathering. I may have attended my last game at Michigan stadium. (vs OSU 2017)

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                  • Originally posted by Jeff Buchanan View Post

                    The thing about M that I think sets it apart from the loss of fan interest that plagues losing football programs like FSU, is M's either knowingly or stupidly following a ticket pricing policy that Seth points out in his mgo article. I had previously felt that the shit teams Harbaugh puts on the field is the driving factor. Yes, it's part of it, but the grossly overpriced tickets to M football games, a result of a particular approach M's athletic department is using to set ticket prices, is probably the major factor.
                    .
                    I’m not so sure I buy into the argument that the pricing of tickets and the voodoo economics of Stubhub will be to blame for undeniably sparse attendance this fall.

                    The whole article just seems like a way to pass the blame on to the old nemesis of Dave Brandon. For the record, he is curseworthy for effectively destroying the “on the street” market and then double dipping with legal scalpers like StubHub. You can say what you want about the guys with stacks of tickets walking up and down the street- I was grateful to pick up a pair of tickets outside the Shoe, after kickoff, the last time we officially won there.

                    The price of tickets isn’t going to be a deal breaker for the majority of no-shows this year. To be honest, going to the games has never really been a cheap “take the whole family” experience. The vast majority of fans go because it is a part of their lives- it is a hobby and a passion. The price of, and the time devoted to, golf, cars, tools, fancy grills, craft beers and aged whiskies don’t freak you out as much – because you enjoy them- at least when they are good experiences.

                    This year looks like there has a good chance of being a clusterfuck. Getting 100k (or so) people that are still rather spooked into a stadium at noon on a hot Labor Day weekend, to see a team that may provide more frustration than satisfaction, could be a nightmare. Thankfully, we won’t be hearing “The Team.. The Team.. The TEAM!”

                    But at least we know that going in and we could almost write it off if lessons are learned and applied going forward. If they aren’t, then the fault isn’t on some deal that Brandon made with StubHub.

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                    • Originally posted by Cody_Russell View Post
                      Florida State basically goes through one “Rich Rod slump” and that’s what happens to their stadium. I don’t recall The Big House looking like that in 2008-2010.
                      It was when Maryland showed up in 2014.

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                      • The whole attendance thing is a play on words.

                        When Michigan sells its remaining tickets, be it for football, basketball, etc., the claim can be made that the game is a "sellout", because all the tickets have been "sold" TO STUBHUB, or whatever vendor they choose. Actual butts in the seats is another matter. They've done this with men's basketball in recent years. They've bragged that Crisler Center is "sold out", but although the tickets have been technically 'sold', .. its NOT a capacity crowd. Lots of blank areas in the arena. Now, when it comes to men's basketball, this won't be a problem for at least the next few seasons. Basketball is going to be the prime time ticket on campus, and Crisler is going to be maxed out, with butts in every seat. But, don't be surprised if we hear about a "sold out Michigan Stadium" ... when cameras pan around and see thousands of empty seats. The tickets are "sold" and the university has money in the coffers for those tickets, .. but the "butts" have stayed home.

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                        • It is a testament to the commitment of Michigan football fans that they consistently packed the Big House through all 3 years of Rich Rod. In fact, I was "all in" for a large portion of it and went to most home games during the first two seasons before I moved out of state. But that era certainly took an emotional toll and following it up with Hoke was a joke from the beginning. Then the emotional roller coaster from the high of Habaugh's hiring to the low, low depths we're at now has left little to no wiggle room in the way of selling tickets. People are justifiably burned out.

                          There are multiple factors that will lead to the 100k streak officially ending this year:

                          #1: Ticket prices. Even if you don't ever plan on taking a family, it's still easily a $300 day for a pair of tickets plus parking and refreshments.

                          #2: The disappointing product on the field. We know Michigan isn't going to beat OSU or win the Big Ten. That's a bitter pill to swallow. The only reason I put team performance behind ticket prices is because if they were in line with our peers, the Iowa's etc., people wouldn't mind shelling out $50 to support an 8/9 win team. Michigan has actually done quite well at home under Harbaugh. Blowout wins over ND, Wiscy, PSU twice and nice record overall. But he's winless AT HOME against both MSU and OSU. So don't charge me for a Cadillac and deliver a Chevy.

                          #3: The gameday experience. Games that routinely last well over 3.5 hours while football is actually being played for 60 of those minutes is becoming real old, real quick. All of these schools have marching bands that practice really hard to play well during the games but now we are inundated with increscent rawk and dance music blaring through every break in the action. It's gross. I didn't buy a ticket to the fucking night club. I want to experience a CFB game.

                          #4: Being taken for granted by the bean counters on State St. I suppose this falls more in line with Seth's complaints about StubHub which fails in comparison the first 3 factors. Yes it sucks to get gouged by StubHub. It's also clear that once they got their foot in the door as Michigan's "ticket partner", they went full gangster. I recall in 2015 (I think) I had an extra ticket for Rutgers. It was a primo seat, like 50 yardline. two thirds the way up. Anyway, at the time there was a "break" on the fees you got since it was a certified reseller of Michigan tickets or whatever. I got my face value of $95 and it only cost me like $5 to SH. Now it's gone crazy. But whatever. If the price is too high, it's too high regardless of who is making the money. Stub Hub doesn't set the original prices for which Michigan sells their season tickets and 3-game packs. Do they manipulate the secondary market? Sure! But that has nothing to do with 19,000 season tickets not renewing. I'm sure Michigan will point to Covid concerns for that and do nothing to actually address the first 3 factors on this list which then begets #4.
                          Last edited by Mike; July 23, 2021, 10:24 AM.

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                          • At bottom, it's the product both seasonally and long-term. People will continue to buy-in even if the season stinks provided that the long-term prospects are encouraging or that the bad season is a blip. M fans, I think, have reached a point of acceptance with HARBAUGH!!!!, and that does not include a great deal of enthusiasm for the long-term. It's more of the same. That will kill a fanbase.
                            Dan Patrick: What was your reaction to [Urban Meyer being hired]?
                            Brady Hoke: You know.....not....good.

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                            • That's a good explanation as to why the fans stayed though the Rich Rod era. It felt like a blip at first but once it became apparent it wasn't going to work, they pulled the plug on that experiment. It was the right thing to do but the ensuing hire was a sick joke. We got the pixie dust Sugar Bowl win out of it and that felt amazing on the heels of 6-18 in the Big Ten for the 3 previous years. But it's almost impossible to explain what an absolute shock Harbaugh's failure has been. All of a sudden you look up and its been 17 years since the last Big Ten title and there isn't even hope. Once that goes there isn't much left unless you want to spend $150 to hear Hells Bells and One Nation Army 47 times in 3.5 hours.

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                              • When I worked on the event staff in 2017 I used to retreat into the portals during the loud music. Its so loud you can't even have a conversation with the person next to you. Its awful.

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