Sunday, August 31st, 2014

Ticket Sales Hinge On Miami Game


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Last Saturday, I witnessed the worst FSU crowd since I’ve been going to games (1997). It turns out that it was the worst attended game since before Doak Campbell Stadium was expanded during the 90s. I felt some empathy for the players, cheerleaders and Marching Chiefs. I’m sure most of them grew up watching Doak sell out for awful match-ups and looked forward to playing in front of tons of fans. Last Saturday they played in front of a ton of bleachers. I felt badly for them, I really did.

There are so many potential reasons why attendance hasn’t broken 70k since the Georgia Tech game last year that I would be here all day if I tried to explain them. Among the newer reasons floated by the FSU Ticket Office during the weather delay were the early start times so far this season and a relatively mediocre schedule. The second half of the season will be better they concluded, because the opponents are better and won’t return 9500 tickets like Wake Forest did. Not once did I hear them mention the Miami game.

It ALL hinges on getting a victory against Miami on October 9.

Is the season over for the football team if they leave Miami without a victory? Of course not. The football team will be far from eliminated from an ACC championship. A win is better of course, but a loss doesn’t destroy the season. It WILL hold down the ticket sales though, even with upcoming promotions.

Boston College is parents weekend, so an attendance boost is likely, but how much? But does anybody think Boston College will bring 10,000 fans with them? Will FSU fans support the team if FSU is coming off a loss at Miami? I expect the south end zone to again have plenty of seats, either way. UNC’s fans are apathetic at best, especially with this season’s dreams ruined from the start. Clemson will bring plenty of fans and could bring a sellout for the first time in a long time if both teams minimize losses from now until then. Florida will also be well attended, thanks to the Gators polluting the stands. Seriously, if it’s like two years ago, the amount or Orange & Blue will be disgusting.

As much as die-hard fans like to dismiss bandwagon fans, the fact is that FSU needs them to sell out Doak. The demographic of Tallahassee and surrounding areas dictates that. But what is it going to take? What will the Boosters and Ticket Office do to respond if attendance remains poor, even with a better product on the field? What happens in the future when out of conference games that are interesting are a thing of the past? Is FSU Football about the team and the community of FSU alumni and fans, or is it really just about maximizing profit?


4 Responses to “Ticket Sales Hinge On Miami Game”
  1. Gurney HalleckNo Gravatar says:

    I actually think that if FSU had played only poor out of conference games so far this year attendance would be fine. The OU game seems to have deflated the fanbase, but it might actually have been a “good” thing for the team (players and coaches) because it got their egos in check.

    Winning is the ultimate cure all. We have been burned for far too long on driving 3 to 6 hours to watch us drop a disheartening loss to NC State/Wake Forest/BC when we have an eminently more talented team.

  2. LuvunolesNo Gravatar says:

    Winning is just about everything to most fans at this point in time and the team and coaches are making strides!

    Personally, I BLAME the MARKETING STRATEGY so far this year.

    Really, do you think that your annoying commercial directed to the fans addressing dedication or loyalty to FSU encourages people to open their wallets?

    Really, NOT featuring Coach Fisher and his words from his first speeches after becoming the Head Coach, about Character not characters, and about Community not just team, the marketing department wasted a valuable opportunity and asset for encouraging sales and Booster membership! What a mistake!

    Really, do you think that offering ticket packages at discount prices to non Boosters and non season ticket holders sends the right message?

    Really, do you think that the motels and hotels negating the two night minimum at the last minute, encourages the fan base to drive miles and hours for what has been questionably less than secure and less than healthy environments for patrons? People out of town and some distances away need to make plans and be encouraged early in the new year. (Note my husband and I drove 61/2 hours to Tallahassee on Saturday morning after a hurricane blew past Naples; and even then, the motel did not wave the 2 night minimum which included staying Friday, and the accommodations were disgusting! It has been 2 years since we moved to Tallahassee, but some of the dumps locally are still under the same lazy and shameful management and Corporations!)

    Seriously, games in August and September in 90+ degree heat and 70+ % humidity; especially, at
    noon and 3:30, are just about unbearable and just like on Saturday, invite the threatening weather to interfere! Perhaps this isn’t in the control of Marketing, but the Boosters and the University Administrators should be talking to the Networks and the “Powers that Be” to have the northern programs play the early ones and the southern programs play the late ones at least in the beginning of the season when the rest of the country is experiencing real FALL and we are still in the Summertime climate! Perhaps that would be easier to market ! Just a thought!

  3. Michael SinisgalliNo Gravatar says:

    i think it’s pathetic. i know we haven’t been winning as of late, but that’s no excuse. i watched the wake game (i live in miami now, but if i were still in tallahassee or within an hour or two from that stadium you bet ur behind i would be at that and every home game) and i thought of how doak is the LEAST intimidating place to play now. i mean, looking at that crowd on saturday, who would be scared to come there and play? NOBODY! the fans are not apart from the team, they are an EXTENSTION of the team and on a loud, sold out day, that energy transfers to the team and they DO play better. look at a team like tennessee who are mediocre at best, but the bring about 100k fans every game. this is ridiculous and anyone who calls themself an fsu fan and lives in the tallahassee/north florida/south georgia area should be ashamed for not attending these home games.

  4. OwlguinNo Gravatar says:

    Just one reaction here from an fan who travels 450 miles from South Florida Occasionally (my wife is an Alum and my son is a student). We were there for the 1st game and I have no incentive to ever again travel that far and spend that much to sit in the 90 degree September sun. I will travel to see a game once it turns cooler, or if the game is at night, and the competition is decent. I will say this – the hotels are very hard to come by for the BC game, so I would expect a pretty decent crowd for that one. Also, I would expect that with available tickets that thousands of FSU fans would be flocking to South Florida to cheer the Noles against Miami, but it’s not happening. Still many tickets left for that game and I don’t see the school promoting attendance to the game.