Ticket Watch Wanted Western to Win

Submitted by Seth on September 13th, 2017 at 12:05 PM

Buried behind the excitement of Harbaugh: The TV Show was the Big Ten’s announcement that the horrible MSU-OSU on same years schedule will continue through 2021. That’s a major drag for Michigan ticket sales on years both rivals are away, and compounded by Jack Swarbrick insisting the ND resumption also be on the OSU/MSU schedule because Notre Dame’s athletic director measures success by how much pettiness he can get away with.

That’s all in the future, but it means we’ll have to start getting used to the current setup, and those of us who go into a season without seats must spend odd years watching the fluctuating ticket market for the big rivals. With Michigan State pulling off the upset over Western, and Ohio State getting Baker Mayfield’d, I figured it might be a good time to focus on the giants.



Yes, this feature is going to have an app. The app will let you put the ticket you’re selling on a map so you don’t have to leave your tailgate or change your route in to pick up or sell a seat on gameday. Wanna see it?


(click embiggens)

The prices will be hovering over the map pins, and those pins will be color-coded based on price (red=expensive, green=cheap, yellow=average) but those things aren’t programmed in yet. We just got the User Input Parameter done this week so we’re still on target to launch after the bye week.

We got 350 people to sign up from last week’s article and would like to get to 1,000 by launch. I haven’t talked about this outside of MGoBlog so for the start at least this will pretty much be our community ticket market. If you go to the site (lead photo by Patrick Barron) and sign up during pre-launch you get to use it for free when it does.



As expected there were empty seats in Dallas, and even for last week’s home opener I ended up giving a pair of tickets away to a guy at Demorest’s tailgate. Sellers weren’t letting them go for less than $45 outside the stadium on my way in, but I went in early.

I long expected Air Force to be the dog of the season and so did the school—you had to buy an Air Force ticket to get any of those special packs that included Michigan State. So already there are a bunch of seats for this game that were bought with the intent to sell. If you’re selling I say get what you can ASAP since the Cincy game didn’t exactly instill Michigan fans with a ton of confidence.

They’re still tracking at just under face online. This is that good corner I like right now:


The price table (remember sites that aren’t our sponsor TicketIQ add a ton of fees so don’t email me saying “But I saw it for $390 on StubHub!” because they’ll add $93.60 at checkout). As a rule add 22% to any StubHub price:

Yard line Air Force MICH ST Rutgers Minn OSU
Midfield $100 (-$67) $480 (-$60)  $141 (-$21) $198 (-$29) $500 (nc)
The 35 $90 (-$2) $376 (-$20) $104 (-$31) $100 ($-56)* $352 (-$30)
The 25 $66 (-$20) $333 (-$27) $71 (-$13) $115 (nc) $410 (+$69)
Goal line $65 (-$13) $360 (+$15) $58 (-$26) $107 (nc) $360 (+45)
Endzone $50 (-$18) $225 (-$20) $39 (-$1) $86 (nc) $296 (+$51)

*(I found this on Craigslist so I reported it but the online seats haven’t moved)

The $50 seats for Air Force are on Craigslist and below face. Again I’m very bearish on these—if you get to the game without tickets I bet you can score a pair for $30 easily and $20 if you try hard. Rutgers is sinking rapidly. Minnesota tickets aren’t moving.



I was really hoping State would lose to Western Michigan last weekend.

Meanwhile in ticket analysis, I was wondering if such a loss might kickstart the process of Spartan apathy bringing prices for that game down, but historically that hasn’t been true (e.g. when they lost to CMU—or feel free to name your own Sparty loss memories).

But I’ve played MSU ticket markets more than most, and back in the day when they were bad this was still a hot ticket. State fans come out of tradition, many just to tailgate and pick up a seat if they can within their price range. That creates a hard floor for these, and keeps them generally above face value.

Michigan fans however are acting differently. These tickets are moving quickly whenever they get a little below market. I think for every State fan who realizes the good times are over, there’s a Michigan fan who wants to show up just to make sure.

I linked a local guy on Craigslist as an example of where the market for this currently sits: if you want to make sure you get a seat, you have to get it from someone who bought these seats planning to sell them for a profit. Michigan did too good of a job jacking up the price of its packages and season tickets to recoup the value on these.

I think they’ll end up around $200.



Ohio State did lose, but ticket prices have only gone up. My running theory is the first loss is a warning that your team is vulnerable, but it takes two losses before there’s a major effect, unless it’s a loss to a team that’s really really bad.

Again, Michigan overcharged everyone for Air Force etc. because that was really pricing to the Ohio State tickets. The $300 range has some magnetism, though people are willing to let them go for $250 now, and that’s generally where they end up around the stadium on Game Day.



September 13th, 2017 at 12:31 PM ^

I'm coming to OSU for sure and maybe MSU depending mostly on gametime (cant do a night game) and as of now I'm planning on waiting till the week of the game to buy.  Seems to me that anybody posting now is never going to take significantly less than their asking price and most posted now are from people looking to turn a nice profit.  The risk obviously is if both teams keep winning the prices will keep going up.

You agree with this strategy?  And what do you think the top end prices with be for a pair of tickets between the 20-40 for OSU?

I'll hang up and listen.


September 13th, 2017 at 12:39 PM ^

My son's roommate was too late to order student season tickets. Is there a student ticket exchange online or something? Also looking to pick one up for my other son a student ticket and then pay the fee for OSU.


September 13th, 2017 at 12:40 PM ^


Do you need more pre launch testers for tidget or user opinion?

On the How It Works page, exchange is spelled wrong (eschange?), is that on purpose.

You should make some guarantee if the ticket doesn't work at entry that the money gets refunded.  Or some mention about how any disputes are resolved.  Eventually maybe rank sellers based on past ticket selling by buyer acknowledging that ticket worked.


September 13th, 2017 at 12:56 PM ^

Ohio State did lose, but ticket prices have only gone up. My running theory is the first loss is a warning that your team is vulnerable, but it takes two losses before there’s a major effect, unless it’s a loss to a team that’s really really bad.

This theory seems to be based on the idea that traveling OSU fans are driving the market, but I'm wondering how much the increase has to do with Michigan fans seeing OSU as vulnerable and wanting to get in.


September 13th, 2017 at 12:57 PM ^

What's the scoop on kickoff time for Minnesota?  Does someone more knowledgable than I know when it will be?  Or at least when we expect to find out for sure?


September 13th, 2017 at 1:28 PM ^

to the MSU game. Would much rather deal with a fellow alum than someone with no ties to Michigan. I don't know if this is the correct spot to do this. I don't care where the seats are and I am also willing to bring tailgate provisions (drinks, food, etc) along with the purchase of the ticket. If you comment with your email address, I will for sure get back with you. I have had no luck so far with any tickets on the private market and I just hate purchasing from websites. Thank you in advance, and as always, GO BLUE! 


September 13th, 2017 at 2:05 PM ^

Contrary to my Raleighwood name, I currently live in Jacksonville and was in A2 for the game last weekend.  I had plans for the Bob Seger concert at night (as well as watching the WMU vs MSU game) so could only stay at the game for an hour or so.  I ended up buying a $30 ticket in the south endzone, 11 rows up.  I got the ticket from a scalper outside of the stadium.  It was a hard ticket and looked legit.

The ticket taker wasn't able to scan the ticket on first attempt but he didn't seem too concerned, hit a few keys, and then let me in.  When I got to my seat, it was occupied.  The guy told me that I got a ticket he had "lost" and it had been replaced.  He showed me another ticket with the same seat location.

I was able to hang out in another seat for most of Q1.  When those people finally came, I just lingered at the top of the section near the entrance.  It wasn't a big deal, and I didn't raise an issue with the ticket office, because I couldn't stay for the whole game.  It might have been different for a bigger game.  Anyway....that's a lesson learned.  I won't tell you about the time I got scammed for $400 outside the 2013 Final Four in Atlanta.  Ouch!

Also, take it for what it's worth, but I know a ticket taker and she mentioned that her manager (or someone like that) said that the MSU game would be at 7:00.  I guess we'll find out for sure in a few weeks.

Oh yeah, the Seger concert was really good.





September 13th, 2017 at 2:07 PM ^

I just signed up for the app!


My brother and I are heading to the Minnesota game and will totally use the app.  He's flying in from Boston and I'm coming from L.A., so I'm thrilled to support this clean and easy way to exchange tickets.


My wife and I went to Hamilton (boom...not even trying to humble brag!) here in LA last night and walked in right behind a couple that had bought bogus tickets.  It was a heart-sinking feeling to watch that happen and know that a) they weren't going to see the show and b) that they'd flushed a bunch of money for no reason.


What guarantees will this app have to protect against something similar?  Sure StubHub and Ticketmaster charge fees, but at least you are guaranteed not to burn a pile of money getting scammed.


September 13th, 2017 at 2:11 PM ^

ADMIN? what are your throughts with tickets for the penn state game?  Also is anyone going and want to get together for a tailgate?  We are (4 of us) flying in from Chicago so we were hoping to meet up with any other Michigan fans.


September 13th, 2017 at 2:45 PM ^

Games super marquee like UM-PSU are never going to drop a ton. I don't see Michigan losses effecting the price at all given PSU fans get up for their White Out no matter what and, besides Buckeyes, away fans typically have meager showings in Happy Valley given it's far from most Big Ten campuses (6+ hours from all traditional Big Ten schools except for about 4 hours from Columbus) and not near any major airports. If PSU were to lose multiple games it would probably take a hit, but not a ton and that doesn't seem likely anyways. 


In general, if you don't know the campus and are traveling too far to risk not getting in, you should buy online 2-3 days before the game. Online secondary tickets usually hit the floor a few days before and then bounce up again right before the game as supply drops rapidly. 


For PSU, you should check out Ticketmaster (the resale seats are shown). It has lower fees than Stubhub/Vivid Seats and since PSU uses it for their official tickets, you never have shipping fees/have to rely on UPS or email. Ticketmaster will just generate the seats for you for print at home or mobile. 


We used Ticketmaster when a group of 7 of us went to Penn State for the 2015 game and it worked out great. Have fun and Go Blue!


September 13th, 2017 at 4:32 PM ^

I got an unexected opportunity to be in town for the MSU game and need two tickets.  I'm really hoping they lose to Notre Dame to put some downward pressure on prices.


September 13th, 2017 at 8:08 PM ^

What is the best way to buy tickets for this game? I will be in Indianapolis, but I would only want to go if Michigan is playing. Should I wait or is there a better way to get them?