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2009
13
Jul

Tickets Galore 07/13/09

The calendar informs us that there are a little less than 8 weeks remaining in this year’s Dead Zone. In about a month, pre-season practice will begin and a few weeks after that, we will again have football. Signs are starting to pop up.

In the rush from the sports desk of the good old N&O, somebody must have dropped a Carolina football schedule. Or, maybe Julius Peppers, when he signed his new contract, said something about Heels’ football to a Charlotte sportswriter, since that is where most sports stories carried by the good old N&O seem to originate these days. In any event, there has been the occasional story about ACC football peppered among all of the tributes to Tyler and pondering of exactly who or what Coach K will be using for guards this year. You might have to search for them, but they are there.

At least the good old N&O, in conjunction with the O in Charlotte, is making a stab. They seem to be heading in the other direction at the Richmond Times-Dispatch. us-emb-saigonThe mass exodus from the T-D building on Grace Street, causing the crowds at the exits to resemble those outside the American Embassy in Saigon in 1975, now includes Hoo beat writer Jeff White. Jeff is leaving the T-D to work for the on-line Hoo sports house organ. Jeff, an occasional correspondent with this one, was the best beat writer in this state,¬† despite having to deal on a regular basis with algroh and his paranoia about the media being out to get him. Jeff’s reward will now cause him to work in even closer proximity to the Great NFL Legend, at least for a while. Best of luck in your new job, Jeff. You have to wonder if the Incredible Shrinking T-D will even bother to replace Jeff, or simply pick up the the comical writings of outrageous homer Jerry Ratcliffe of the Media General stablemate the Daily Hoo.

One of Jeff’s first jobs will likely be attempts at convincing Hoos to buy tickets, always a problem in Hooville. More on that in a bit. But, the Hoos are not alone in their troubles¬† of peddling ACC football tickets. Things seem to be tough all over.

The first inclination came a few weeks ago when a mailing from the Tech ticket office popped up, offering single-game tickets to the Tech home games against Fredo and Carolina. That would seem to indicate that these are unsold ones from the visitor’s allotment that have been shipped back to Blacksburg. This is not altogether unusual behavior on the part of Fredo. He always sends tickets back, even when he is in a regional conference. That is because he has no fans. If Fredo were in a conference with UMass, at least once every two years the Minutepersons would find themselves awash in tickets.

It is a bit surprising that tickets were available for Carolina. Yes, the game is on a Thursday night, complicating travel plans, but making their way to Lane from one state south wouldn’t be any tougher than the travel logistics faced by Nebraska fans, and Tech doesn’t seem to have any extras for that game. When Tech first joined the ACC, Hokies were astounded to discover that buying tickets to stadia such as Kenan, Groves and Wade was a simple as simply buying tickets. Butch Fever doesn’t seem to have completely changed those attitudes.

Carolina does seem to be selling its home tickets, unlike, say,the Canes. There, new Canes AD Kirby Hocutt, perhaps influenced by all of this year’s ‘The Canes Are BACK’ message board posts, confidently set season ticket prices at $775, then sat back and waited for the cash to roll in. A couple of months later, he was still waiting. Those weauxfing Cane loons didn’t seem to be putting their money where their fingers are.

singlefanFaced with the prospect of even the half of the newly-named Land Shark Stadium [snicker] that occasionally is actually occupied by paying customers sitting empty and with the option of padding the crowd by handing out free tickets to those gang members that used to hang around the Orange Bowl no longer an option, Hocutt decided to take action. The commerce-astute Canes AD recently announced that in order to ‘continue to grow our fan base,’ ticket prices in parts of the stadium will be reduced to $119. From $775 to $119 is quite the discount. I’m sure that if anybody actually paid top dollar, they are thrilled. It would also seem that a place that has collected as much MNC hardware as have the Canes shouldn’t have to resort to cheap tricks in order to grow the fan base, but these are the Canes, where message board posts declaring Backness always seem to outnumber the actual paying customers.

And then there are the Hoos. Ever since the Tech-Hoo series was brought back in 1970 following strong encouragement from the General Assembly, it has been amusing to observe, mostly in odd-numbered years, the various ‘Keep the Hokie Fans Out of the Smithsonian’ campaigns. Over the years and decades they have ranged from Dick Bestwick declaring that he sure would like to play a real home and home with Tech to George threatening to flick the results of his constant nose-picking at any Tech fans in the house to Hoo AD Craig ‘Tubby, I think the color combination of orange, blue and maroon is a good one’ Littlepage’s outright begging of Hoos not to sell their tickets to Hokies. 07hoo53a1While they have managed to reduce the numbers of Tech fans in the Smithsonian from over half in the 80’s to about a third these days, none have entirely worked. Tech fans always seem to find a way in.

It would seem that Craig’s latest notion is to simply throw in the towel. Have at them, Hokies. If nothing else, Littlepage will at least be able to unload unsold tickets to those games with other traditional rivals TCU and William and Mary too. Cost-conscious Hoos and fans of the Tribe should be advised that pretty soon there will be some really cheap tickets to the TCU and W&M games available on Ebay.

3 Comments

  1. JDanWuff — July 13, 2009 #

    52 long miserable days………………………………

    Reply

  2. Thundering Turd — July 14, 2009 #

    Yeah, you can add Marshall to this “I need to unload tickets” desperado club.
    – – –
    Link To Purchase Tickets
    – – –

    Up My Herd.

    Reply

    Jim Reply:

    Times have sure changed for the Herd. Back in 2002 they weauxfed all summer about how they would beat Tech. It was a decent game for a quarter or so. Marshall seems to have been headed down ever since.

    Reply

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