Five for Friday: Changes Coming to the Fan Experience
By Tony Gerdeman
With the news this week that Ohio State is looking to increase ticket prices to its football games, we have to assume that this is just the first of many changes coming to the fan experience where it concerns the football program.
There is also talk about Big Ten teams playing one inter-conference neutral site game every year because home games apparently just aren't as interesting for the television executives as a game in an NFL or MLB stadium is.
Obviously, these are smarter men and women than you and I, so you shouldn't get upset about what's to come, because they surely know what's best for everyone involved. Remember, not everything is about you, and it's pretty selfish of you to think that it is.
But there is more coming than just the increase in ticket prices, and the removal of home games (coincidence?). This is just the start. There are so many greater things to come. We are fortunate to live in such a time as we do. So with our good fortune in mind, here are a few other possible changes headed your way.
1. There will be a two Donatos minimum.
Now you don't have to actually eat the Donatos, but you're damn sure gonna pay for it. Twice. Those people spend good money with Ohio State and it's time that the university begins paying them back. So with each football ticket, you will also be charged for two of the personal pizzas that can be found at any Ohio Stadium concession stand. You will receive two vouchers, but the vouchers are not transferable to any other person, alive or dead. Also, the vouchers can only be used on Tuesdays.
2. Premium games will require "business casual" attire.
Don't think you're going to pay $150 for a ticket and show up dressed like a hobo on a bender. Business casual will be the dress for the day, and before you even ask, no, jeans are not "business casual" here. Ohio State is trying to class up the joint, and you're either going to be part of the solution or you're going to have to watch the game from your boxcar. And while OSU wants you to buy as many jerseys as you can afford, don't even think about wearing one at a game.
3. For the Club Seats, there will be an apparatus installed requiring an additional $35 to get the seat to fold down.
That might sound extreme, but what's another $35 between friends? You can choose to stand for the entire game, but standing is $25 per quarter, or $70 for the entire game. Though keep in mind, if you pay the $35 to get your seat to fold down, every time you stand up to cheer or whatnot, the apparatus resets and you'll need to pay another $35 to unlock your seat. Also, if you are planning on leaning back in your seat, there will be a leaning surcharge that will be automatically added to your credit card on file. You can, however, go online and choose the "Lean for Life" option and pay a substantial one-time fee and you won't ever have to worry about being charged for sitting back again. Note: The "Lean for Life" can be voided by Ohio State when you reach a point where the university feels that you should already be dead.
4. If you can't make it to the game, please alert the university.
No, not so they can re-sell your seat, but rather so they can sell ad space in your now empty seat. Eventually, they will find this to be such a boon to business that they will hold back tickets for entire sections of seating because they can make more from the advertising than they can from the fans who used to sit in those seats. After all, solid gold private jets don't grow on trees.
5. Goodbye Script Ohio, Hello Script Wendy's
Let's face it, a marching band in today's economy is a loser. All they do is suck up money like a couch with a taste for coinage. A true genius, however, can turn that loser into a winner, and that's what the higher-ups at Ohio State will do with TBDBITL. Yes, everybody loves Script Ohio, but Script Ohio hasn't paid a single bill in its entire life. However, if OSU was to sell advertising through their marching band, then TBDBITL could finally add something to Ohio State's athletic program. Because let's be honest, all they're doing at this point is taking up seats that could be prime real estate for some pretty sweet ads.
Bonus: There will be a new screening process to enter Ohio Stadium.
Not allowed: People with money clips which are just rubber bands around a few one-dollar bills.
Bonus: Scalping is fine, provided you pay proper tribute.
Ohio State understands that scalping happens, all that they ask is that whatever you pay a scalper, you also pay to the university. After all, who do you think you are trying to undermine Ohio State?!
Bonus: Neutral site games must also remain neutral in the stands.
Let's face it, television executives aren't paying millions for these gimmick games to have them ruined by excessive cheering or booing. There will be absolutely no cheering during neutral-site games. After all, they are called "neutral" for a reason. You can still go to the game, but do not get involved.
Bonus: 100% of the 50/50 raffle will remain with Ohio State.
Still, you can't win if you don't play! What are you, chicken?
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