Monday, April 27, 2009

BREAKING NEWS: Wisconsin changes student ticket system

According to our friends over at the Badger Herald, the University of Wisconsin is finally changing its student season ticket policy. An e-mail from the athletic department reads that UW is doing away with the controversial lottery system that has plagued football fans for the past two years and reverting back to the first-come, first-served system.

I wrote a guest column for the Herald about a month ago on this topic, from the basketball point of view - though it is relevant to football. Another former BH sports editor, Derek Zetlin, is no doubt rejoicing today over in Prague.

To sum up the problems in one paragraph, UW changed to a lottery system in reaction to a 2007 e-mail glitch where half the student body didn't even know football tickets were on sale before they were completely sold out...and because the school felt like giving everybody an equal chance at tickets, regardless of whether or not you can name three Badgers without the use of a game-issued program. As a result, many "real" fans were left without tickets, you had a student section that was commonly 60, 70, even 80 percent empty at kickoff...and worse, thousands of kids entered the lottery with the sole intention of winning tickets and immediately turning them around on Facebook marketplace or Craigslist for three times face value. Just an ugly situation all the way around that hopefully is being changed for 2009.

Jordan Schelling, currently the associate sports editor at the Herald and the man who alerted me to this development, will be writing a column on this ticket policy change in Tuesday's paper. Check that out tomorrow at


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