First, there were three letters to the editor in the Lantern about the tickets (and lack thereof). The first letter is from a guy who didn't hear about the lottery and was therefore out of town on Monday and missed the lottery. The athletic department doesn't promote a lot of the ticket opportunities very well specifically because they know that word of mouth alone will result in more demand than they need. It's a logical thing to do, but results in unfortunate situations like this. The other two letters say pretty much the same thing I said Monday, but at least they confirm that I'm not just a lone crackpot on this ticket situation.
Next up is a breakdown from the university of how their 16,000 tickets are distributed. Looking at all the people they need to give tickets to, it's tough not to appreciate how difficult their task is, trying to keep so many people happy. But then, other parts of it just serve to make me angrier. In particular:
- They claim the student lottery distributed 1,100 tickets. But if you count the winning numbers, either by hand (as two people I know did) or by importing them into Excel (as I just did), you will find that there were 1,000 winners. Where are the other one hundred tickets? True, one hundred tickets isn't much to get worked up about, but why claim you're giving out more tickets than you are, when it's so easy to prove you wrong? That bugs me.
- The "President's Club/Buckeye Club/Development" segment (the big time donors, for the uninitiated) gets by far the largest piece of the pie, receiving 4,900 tickets. For comparison, that's almost ten times what the season ticket holders received, almost five times what the students received, and nearly twice what was allotted for the players, coaches, staff, and their families.
They will want to be careful. With tuition and other costs of post-secondary education rising, some students (everywhere, not just at OSU) are feeling like they aren't getting the same bang for their educational buck, like they are no more than a source of revenue for the university. The athletic department isn't helping, as tickets are getting more and more expensive and tougher and tougher to resell. Now the department is telling students (in particular, but also season ticket holders and, to a lesser extent, alumni) that they aren't an important enough revenue stream to warrant anything resembling the consideration for tickets that the big time donors receive. They aren't helping to foster much love for the ol' alma mater, and it might come back to haunt them when they need new donors down the road.
There is still a sliver of hope for us ticketless students, however. The athletic department has announced that there is going to be a second lottery on Thursday night for the unclaimed tickets from the earlier student and faculty/staff lotteries. I'm guessing it won't be more than a few hundred tickets, but hey, it'll help.