Buying Tickets on game day near the Big House

Submitted by Michigan_Mike on August 27th, 2012 at 11:20 PM

My girlfriend and I are free on 9/15 and were thinking about heading down to Ann Arbor and picking up some relatively cheap tickets from scalpers near the stadium. I've never bought tickets like that before and was wondering what the situation is like. For a game like UMass I would assume the prices wouldn't be too outrageous.

Anyway, where should I look for them? Are there any type of cons going around to sell fake tickets I should worry about? Also I was wondering if anyone had bought tickets from scalpers before and what their experiences were like. Thanks in advance for any information it would be greatly appreciated.



August 27th, 2012 at 11:27 PM ^

Somewhere before you get to Pioneer, you'll come across half a dozen guys hawking tickets for whatever they can get for them.

There is always the risk of picking up a fake, and there as something about transffering seats that changed this year increasing the odds slightly, but you won't run into that for UMass. Nobody is gonna screw around with that for $20 tickets.


August 27th, 2012 at 11:53 PM ^

for non-premium games. they're usually selling on the walk from the union to the stadium, especially along hoover west of state, starting an hour or so before game time. it costs something non-trival ($35? not sure) to validate them for non-student use. but that's one option, if you want to be in the student section.

you should be able to get even cheaper tickets (i.e., less than $45 or whatever) from scalpers, but since i have an mcard that lets me use student tickets, i've never tried.


August 28th, 2012 at 1:00 AM ^

Look for people holding up two fingers.... It seems to be that these types are usually not  your every day scalpers.  That game will certainly be a buyers market.  Should be a lot of people out there desperate to sell.


August 28th, 2012 at 1:21 PM ^

My seats are in the northeast corner.  Used to be down too low, but this year I requested a move and got 20 rows higher.  Looking forward to the view!!  100% agree with you about the advantages.

Next year would like to switch to southwest corner so the sun isn't blasting me in the face all day though.  Tried to make that switch this year also, but maybe the compound requests don't fly all that well.


August 28th, 2012 at 1:14 AM ^

i don't understand why everyone doesn't get season tix.  they're an unbelievable bargain and you can unload the ones you don't use.  season tix is less than face value and in most seasons there are at least 2 premium games (this season is only msu). 


August 28th, 2012 at 12:25 PM ^

i checked my emails and it looks like season tix cost $390 per ticket.  I got 2 so it cost $780 plus $10 application fee.

The face value of tix (I don't have them in front of me so I don't remember the exact numbers) adds up to something like $475 per ticket.  Therefore, you get a discount to face value.  Please correct me if I'm wrong, but this is off of memory.


August 28th, 2012 at 9:47 AM ^

If you can get "decent" seats for MSU for that price, you should buy them.  The prices on stub hub -- offered and already purchased -- for that game are much higher (for sideline seats).  Corner seats might be in the neighborhood of $250 (at least now).

One other consideration re buying on the street:  when people sell their tickets on StubHub, they frequently are delivered electronically via the bar codes (which are probably changed to new bar codes for the buyers).  The old tickets are deactivated, but the seller still holds the physical ticket.  I can imagine that some people are out there selling those tickets as if they are still good, when in fact they are not.


August 28th, 2012 at 12:31 AM ^

it used to be tickets were cheaper father out. They were also cheaper closer to game time unless there was a shortage (like ND and OSU). I always went free. With your GF though don't go cheap...drop the cash for the best seats and don't haggle.

KC Wolve

August 28th, 2012 at 10:27 AM ^

Buy them ahead of time. If you are with your buddies, it is one thing to take the risk, but I would never risk it bringing the lady. I took a beating for UTL when I brought my wife with me for her first game. Bite the bullet and get them ahead of time so you don't have to stress.


August 28th, 2012 at 1:11 AM ^

i would rather buy right in front of the stadium (northeast gate).  this is where people unload their extra family season tix.  i literally paid $2 for tix to the mich v. penn state game where manningham won it w/ 1 second left. 


August 28th, 2012 at 11:13 AM ^

i was with a group of friends and i see a guy offering to sell his ticket (it was an extra single ticket).  i ask him how much, he says to name an offer.  i say 2 bux and he looks at me like i'm joking.  i pull out a 2 dollar bill (one of those commemorative 2 dollar bills w/ the signing of the declaration of independence on it).  it was actually my lucky 2 dollar bill so i feel like it was a fair trade....  but yea... that's how i paid 2 bux for a ticket to the best game that i've ever seen!


August 28th, 2012 at 11:24 AM ^

$2 bills are not "commemorative."  Still printed and circulated as currency (you'll find $2 bills dated with recent series dates, post-2005, though I'm not sure they're printed every year).  Still given out as change at some of Ann Arbor's finest establishments, Blimpy Burger and Dominick's, to name two.

2 Walter Smith

August 28th, 2012 at 3:01 AM ^

if I pay less than $100 per ticket when MSU comes to Ann Arbor.  It will be my first visit to the Big House since 2005,  and I am bringing my wife of one year to show her Ann Arbor for the first time.  I am already SO excited.  It's been a while, and it will be the best $100 or more spent all year.  Go Blue!


August 28th, 2012 at 6:01 AM ^

and you will be paying a lot less than face value for them as well.  They will be everywhere, but outside the entrances to the stadium will be a concentrated number of people trying to sell them quickly and head in.  If you want to buy them for as cheap as possible, wait until about 20-30 minutes prior to kick at one of these entrances.  I've had to sell tix plenty of times for people in my group punking out.  For a game like this, if I had extras, I would be pleased to get $50 or more for the pair.

Good luck.


August 28th, 2012 at 8:13 AM ^

If you've ever had occasion to park over by Kroger or Cubs AC, there are typically a few people trying to sell in the Stadium / Stimson / State triangle as well, although the Stadium Bridge Project may have changed this at least temporarily. If you park in the neighborhoods southeast of the stadium, you still may find a few despite the detours.


August 28th, 2012 at 2:12 PM ^

I've seen those guys.  In fairness they are guys and their skin is of a shade that could be referred to as black.  Nothing necessarily perjorative in an accurate description.  I've seen white guys on the same corner.  Would prefer chics of any color, to be honest.


August 28th, 2012 at 10:33 AM ^

along State street coming out of Pioneer parking lot and even in front of stadium.  For a game like UMASS and MAC schools if you are the patient type you can get them for practically nothing within a few minutes of kickoff.


August 28th, 2012 at 11:35 AM ^

Before making the drive from NC, I'm guessing it would be a smart idea to buy tickets online before making the ten hour drive.  I'm heading to the MSU game on the 20th of October and still don't have tickets.  I know it's never a "safe bet" to rely on scalping, but how is the availability for a premiere match up like that?  Keep in mind I don't mind spending up to $300 per ticket, but if push comes to shove, I can spend any amount. 



August 28th, 2012 at 5:36 PM ^

Ticket prices drop dramitically after the kickoff (I know, I know, arrive early, but I'm just giving a tip on how to save a few bucks).  Also, print out the seating chart so you have a good idea of where the tickets are located.  The scaplers often "fluff" how good their seats are.