Sad Picture at Stadium Just Before Kickoff

Submitted by winterblue75 on September 14th, 2013 at 9:51 PM

courtesy of @mvictors Twitter



September 14th, 2013 at 11:10 PM ^

First of all, this is not "right before" kickoff.  This is about 15 minutes before kickoff.  Second, this was a terrible noon game on a religious holiday.  What do you expect?  

This is also an example of the GA policy backfiring.  People aren't going to go through the hassle of waiting 45 minutes while they hand out individual tickets to watch one of the worst teams in FBS.  Based on the performance of the team today, it was a good choice not to go.

Doc Brown

September 15th, 2013 at 9:56 AM ^

my pic was right at kickoff. There goes your hypothesis. Secondly, we have  Jewish fans at our tailgate show up and get to the game. Heck, one of them was even partaking in the candied bacon at the tailgate. Their opinion was God really doesn't give two craps about what you eat unless it is another human...

Next time come up with a better hypothesis bases upon your initial observations. 


September 14th, 2013 at 11:10 PM ^

As a student, I could've told you that this would probably happen this week.

You're coming off a huge game against ND with an (apparent) cupcake like Akron.  You have Yom Kippur which is cutting the student base down by probably 20%.  Loss of that 20% probably triggers even more people to decide not to go.  

On top of that, many students have lost some interest in the past year due to the GA.  Speaking as someone who had top row seats and made it to every game his freshman year, it did kind of suck to learn about GA.  I don't know how much it would effect attendance at a game when everyone has already bought tickets, but I bet it did have some effect.

 On that note, GA at least for the CMU game was a mess.  Got in just before kickoff and was assigned a section.  Ended up standing on some stairs with tons of other students next to the alumni section before fighting back down.  Was told by the guy working there to move to another section, and upon arrival at that section, was told to move to yet another section.  I don't know if it was that bad for ND as I made sure to get there early enough that it wasn't an issue, but I can imagine some students being fed up with it and straight up deciding not to attend this week's game.

I don't know how it was back in the day, but I'd venture to say the student body is not as dedicated to making it to the games as those in the past.  Personally, I live in a house with 5 other people and only 2 of them have student ticket packages.  Of people I know who do have tickets, a large majority of them don't want to get to games early.  On my end, I haven't missed a Michigan game since 2005, but it's still tough getting there early when most other people I know would rather wait til a bit into the 1st quarter.

I don't know what you would do to fix attendance.  You can't simply take student tickets away.  As a note, I know tons of students who were selling tickets for $5-$10.  Some even gave their ticket away for free.  If you really wanted to attend the game, you could've gotten in for price of validation essentially.



September 15th, 2013 at 12:12 AM ^

Back in the day, students may or may not have been more dedicated.  But there were two things that helped attendance in crappy-opponent games like this:  No TV and 1:00 PM starts.

Not every game was on TV, especially games like this, and 1:00 gave a full extra hour to get in tailgating/pre-gaming and then get to the game. 

Crappy opponents at noon that are on TV is an attendance killer.


September 14th, 2013 at 11:20 PM ^

Beautiful day plus an opponent who hadn't had a winning season since forever?

I knew people who literally could not give their tickets away to this game.  Interest level was low, low, low, especially after the fever pitch of last week, and the early season blowout against Central. 


Section 1

September 14th, 2013 at 11:52 PM ^

I have seen the north end of Camp Randall fill up even more slowly than what we saw in Michigan Stadium today.

But then those were for 11 am starts in Madison.  I can't even imagine how crappy our student section would look, for an 11 am start.

We've seen the same thing in Madison, East Lansing and Ann Arbor.  I have not seen this sort of apathy in Columbus.  When our student section is more than half-empty, Urban Meyer is leading the team and a filled south endzone in quick cals.

steve sharik

September 14th, 2013 at 11:34 PM ^ the late '80s/early '90s, as well as a current student (getting MBA), I haven't given much thought to the solution of the best way to get all the students there, on time.

However, this new GA seating policy is a failure.  It's not really GA, anyway.  They changed the policy after the CMU game.  GA is first come, first served.  The problem with that in Michigan stadium is that the seats are only wide enough for an elementary schooler.  Any of you who've sat it that stadium know you basically sit sideways when it's full.

So, with GA, random student sits down normally.  Place fills up, but with far fewer students in a row than actual seats b/c everyone's sitting as a normal, adult-sized human.  Students who show up the latest (which could be in plenty of time) end up not having a seat.

Solution for ND? Make students sit in the exact order they arrived, filling each section from first row going up.  My two friends and I just happen to get down when there were two seats left in a row.  We tell the ushers we have three and want to sit together.  Do they let a group of two pass?  No, they yell at us, tell us we can't, and we didn't watch the game together.  We got in our "seats" two hours before kickoff.

Now, put yourself in the shoes of a student.  Yes, you get discounted seats and no PSL, but you are paying thousands of dollars in tuition.  You can't tailgate b/c you have to get to the stadium several hours before everyone else.  Once you do, you don't have a ticket with an actual seat number, but are forced to sit where the ushers tell you, and there's a decent chance you won't sit next to the people who you bought tickets with.  Would you take that deal?

Honestly, the way the ushers acted, I felt like I was in middle school again with little to no say in where I would sit and little to no voice.  Frankly, just very poor customer service. Moreover, I think it's really a long-term plan to get as many students as possible out and full paying customers (complete with PSLs) in.

I guess my ideas are:

  1. Widen each aisle by 4-5 feet.
  2. Take out bleachers and put in individual chairbacks.
  3. Add another 10-20 rows to the stadium to get the attendance back up.
  4. Make the entire stadium (suites excepted) general admission.  Find a way such that once you pick your seat, you get a ticket that has section, row, and seat number on it.

In all the games I've been to over the years (and I've sat in every single area of the stadium), the UTL II game was, by far, my least favorite experience.  So, I guess if I were an undergrad, I can see why I wouldn't really care about making the athletic department look good by coming to a game like this after being treated to a very poor experience the week before.


September 15th, 2013 at 12:10 AM ^

I grabbed four friends from around the stadium (secs 39, 7, and I dont know) and the 5 of us stood in the student section to try to help fill it up. Its not much but we tried and we were loud.

I did have two tickets for this game that I positively could not give away. I tried to all week.


September 15th, 2013 at 12:33 AM ^

Michigan should schedule opponents that people want to see then. It looks bad, worst than usual, because of the GA seating policy, but I couldn't even give away... For free... Two tickets I had to this game. Unfortunately they went unused. I'm not surprised. It did fill up later though, and looked quite full by the 3rd.


September 15th, 2013 at 12:36 AM ^

The students were treated as sub human last week and said fuck noon kickoff against shitbag opponent, fuck the GA, and fuck YOU. It's so delicious coming here and seeing the tears.


September 15th, 2013 at 12:46 AM ^

It was well into the second quarter before fans were sitting above the wheelchair section.  I don't think there was more then 100k until after halftime.  The student section is too big.  You can't count on 18-22 yr old kids to fill that many seats on a weekly basis.  The need to cut one section back from the endzone side, not from the top down.  The GA thing is not going to solve this issue.

As a season ticket holder for many years and watching the evolution of the corporate monster push the average fan to their couch rather than the stands at the game, I think this problem is going to get worse.  After witnessing the UTL2 last week and the assault on the senses with the constant barrage of noise and endless music (not to mention the fight in my section at half time) and the seriously over priced tickets with the PSD tacked on, it's time to watch the games from my couch.  I can easily save most of the $$ and spend more on a one of two 'good' games than see what I saw today.

My PSD costs over $55 per seat per game which means today was $130 per seat, plus parking and food.  My seats are outside the 35 yd line and the constant barrage of overly loud music really detracts from the experience.  I'm not a get off my lawn guy or a down in front guy either, but the cost of game day is getting seriously out of reach for us middle class fans.

/End Rant



September 15th, 2013 at 1:00 AM ^

Today was one of the family pack ticket days. My parents came in and we sat in section 15. This was my first time not sitting in the student section...

... you want to talk sad? How about a hald full student section being LOUDER than the rest of the stadium. Shit. No one wanted to make any noise where I was, it was pathetic. I tried to on many occassions and no one else did around me and it made me feel weird.

The last few Akron drives though I said fuck it and made as much noise as I could. I think I got some of these lazy ass non-student fans to make noise too. 


I kind hope the low student section attendance had to do with GA. As a SR, I went each year expecting slightly better and better tickets. I was pumped for this year to sit really close. Then this GA bullshit just threw that out the window. I'm leaving for the ND game like 2.5+ hours early and getting seats around row 60... bullshit. 

I shouldn't have to completely abonded everything else I am doing for hours on hours before the game just to prove I'm a "real fan". I grew up in Ohio and went through all of Middle School and High School without Michigan beating OSU, but I still wore my Wolverines gear proud. I waited my turn for tickets and now this year that's all out the window

Fuck Dave Brandon

814 East U

September 15th, 2013 at 2:03 AM ^

this thread is such bullshit.

1. Most students just don't care...spare me the excuses. Your HW is BS. I know it. You know it. Maybe if you weren't watching some dumbass FOX reality show you would have put a huge dent in you project before Saturday afternoon...or just pull an all nighter like a lot of students. Suck it up.

2. Football games aren't just 3-4 hours. It is basically a day event. It is very rare to get up go straight to the game and leave to go right to the library.

2. Alums skipped games before (congrats to you 40 year olds who are obsessed with this blog who never did back in the day). Also, remember OSU '09. You fucking old timers all sold your tickets while I was in the student section looking at a sea of red. When times get toughand the weather is cold you old fucks bail just like the students do for a MAC opponent.

3. Students EARNED a right to those tickets. Take them away, make them GA, whatever. They are STUDENTS and go to the university. Getting more money from walmarts doesn't do much when you piss off future alums in the long run.

4. Students suck and always will. So do the alums yelling sit down on 4th down at UTL2. No one will ever be happy. Kick out all UofM Dearborn and Flint students and hack away a few thousand tickets from the AA crowd. I was always in favor of a "campout" or lottery situation like many schools do for basketball when I was a student. If you want tickets show us you want them. Also, if you miss two or more game you have to "camp" again. If you go to all games you get them 100% next year.


Section 1

September 15th, 2013 at 8:26 AM ^

2. Alums skipped games before (congrats to you 40 year olds who are obsessed with this blog who never did back in the day). Also, remember OSU '09. You fucking old timers all sold your tickets while I was in the student section looking at a sea of red. When times get toughand the weather is cold you old fucks bail just like the students do for a MAC opponent. 


You are wrong about OSU in 2009; it's something that I have explained repeatedly in the past.

As of 2009, the Athletic Department had been on a self-imposed program of several years' duration, where they were "banking" all returned/unrenewed season ticket subscriptions, in preparation for the Stadium renovations.  Because they were going to need to reduce the total number of seats in the main bowl by a few thousand (to be more than made up by all of the seating in the twin councourses), all of the banked tickets were going on to the single game and/or package secondary market.  So that when they widened aisles and seat numbering, they would not be taking away any season ticket seats.  Those banked AD tickets were to a great extent snapped up by brokers and sold to the highest bidders.

If you don't beleive me, ask somebody in the Athletic Department.

No; the Akron game really ought to end, once and for all, the silly complaining about alumni and older season-ticket-holding patrons at Michigan Stadium.  Don't ever bother us about our fandom again, as long as the images of the half-empty student sections remain.

Doc Brown

September 15th, 2013 at 10:12 AM ^

Younger alums and students can bitch at the older alums and fans for sitting on their hands for crucial plays when on defense. Even the 80% full student section at the 4th made more noise than the other sections combined. I was one of the only fans in sec 40 actually trying to make noise when we were on defense. Come on people get off your butts and make this an intimidating environment. Don't give me the excuse your knees hurt. Last time I checked your vocal cords, diaphragm, and lungs don't require standing. Even with the flaky attitude of some students, I do miss the energy of the student section. 

Section 1

September 15th, 2013 at 1:00 PM ^

When are the younger/student fans going to quit bitching about older fans who get to the games on time, who fill their seats and who pay the PSD's, ticket prices and unrestricted donations that form the largest part of the Athletic Department budgetary revenues?

Shut the fuck up, you miserable punks.

Section 1

September 15th, 2013 at 2:14 PM ^

This stupid fight over "who's a better fan?" was started by the "Up in back!" crowd.  And that is why the Akron game is such an embarassment to them.  It's blowback.  I wouldn't gripe about this with such vengeful enthusiasm.  But the Up-in-back fanboys started it, and they had it coming this time.  People like me didn't start this fight.  But I'd like to finish it for sure.

Doc Brown

September 15th, 2013 at 3:01 PM ^

wait what? Us up in backs regular season ticket holders show up on time while also making more noise than a farting mouse. No, you have it wrong. it is you blue hairs which started the whole Michigan Stadium has no home field advantage. You would rather the fan experience be closer to the Opera than a college football game. I am sorry, you had it coming. If I was in your section I would be yelling up in back the entire time. You are supposed to cheer and support your team, not sit with your thumb up your ass. 

Doc Brown

September 15th, 2013 at 3:07 PM ^

wow, did I touch a nerve? I pay my PSD and donation (may not be as large as yours and mine is directed towards ice hockey, but this is not a dick measuring contest), show up to every game at least one hour early. I was there an hour before this game.  My alum/season ticket holdler section (40) was full. However, it was quiet as a church compared to the student section that was 60% at kick off. 

I see two issues with fans at the moment. 

          1. Students who fail to show up on time for the non big ticket games

          2. thumb up their butt older fans and alums who make more noise during a bowel                     movement than during Michigan football games. 


September 15th, 2013 at 11:50 AM ^

Apathetic/angry students who either bought (or had parents buy) tickets who don't feel like showing up, or the ridiculous gray hairs who should have given up their tickets to us "Walmarts" a long time ago.  (who i believe are no less loud/passionate)
I suppose if you donate enough $ to the school you are justified in being wheeled into the stadium and telling non-alum fans like myself to sit down in front.
I lost count of the number of senior citizens napping in their seats next to their napping toddler grandchildren.  Neither paid much attention to the game nor made any noise in my section.
 I can only show up to the "cheap" games, it's depressing seeing the students not bother, even while I count myself lucky the lazy season ticket holder that I bought my seats from wasn't going to show up either.

Beyond that however I have to ask a question:

Why have a student section al all?  
I mean i think students deserve to get a discount on tickets to see their school's team play, but why not just let them buy tickets like everybody else?  Most use parental or student loan $ anyway, let them buy from the same pool of tickets as the rest of us.  
That way if only 1000 students want to pay to watch Akron so be it.  If 20K want to fight for OSU tickets thats great too.  
I honestly don't think the student section provides that much of a tangible benefit to the team, so the AD should use the students boundless enthusiam to spread it around the rest of the stands a bit.  I realize it's tradition, and they are a source of energy, but the current plan aint workin.  maybe thats DB's nuclear option.

Shorty the Bea…

September 15th, 2013 at 2:17 AM ^

1.  You can't blame the students for not showing up.  It's simple economics that the Athletic Department is choosing to ignore.  The opportunity cost is simply too high for some students and fans to attend a game against Shit-Tech U.  Who feels truly proud and worth-while after spending five hours cheering for an annihilation of a third-grade math test?  Some people expect more.  Second and more importantly, students can only buy season tickets as a package or purchase single game tix on the open market.  A season ticket in the student section itself is likely worth as much as an Ohio game ticket on the open market, so of course students are going to purchase the package and then attend the games they want to only.  To solve this, the A.D. can either price the students out of the market (methinks that would be his choice if allowed), offer some competitive ticket packages that do not include shit games (so the A.D. could expect students would show up to the games they buy tickets for), or only schedule real opponents instead of pre-season kittens swimming in a bucket.  

2.  General Admission is all wrong.  I guarantee one major reason the stands look empty at kickoff is because the new policy treats the students like cattle and ropes them in by row, taking far longer to get students into the stadium than ever before.  This process creates log jams at student section gates that becomes both a massive safety hazard and a dysfunctional, frustrating experience for all participants.  Once again, by creating more hoops to jump through, increasing the price (in satisfaction units) to enter the seating area, and treating students like cows, the opportunity cost for showing up to see a game becomes even higher and students become even more selective about the games they come to see.  Why jump through all those hoops when you have HD and all the free snacks and bathroom breaks and no one policing your consumption or seating all game long?  Bringing one donut to a student who arrives five hours before kickoff only rewards the hardcore fan with nothing better to do.  It has not convinced one student who was seriously considering skipping the Akron game to show up ever, ever.  The A.D. can solve this issue by making the student experience as hassle-free as possible and rewarding the general student experience rather than focusing on frivolous marketing ploys that do not effectively reach the masses.

3.  The A.D. did reduce the student allotment this season by a couple thousand tickets.  I think this is his ultimate design as he really wants the revenue he can get from selling a ticket to the general public rather than a student.  I feel that is why the process to view a game as a student has become only more of a hazard and all-around more inconvenient, especially when compared to the experience of the average fan.  

Mr. Yost

September 15th, 2013 at 5:10 AM ^

Slavery treated people like cattle...GA Seating is not dehumanizing you so quit your bitching.

If you don't wanna go to the game, that's fine. That's your right. But fans have every right to complain about poor attendance from students.

Don't think for a second your can exercise your option to go or not to go to a game...but others can't exercise theirs to complain about it.


September 15th, 2013 at 7:24 AM ^

He does make a point though about how the new policy creates log jams at the student section gates. For the ND game my ticket happened to be for a seat above the student section so I was stuck waiting in a massive line to enter the stadium. It probably took about 40 minutes and I made it inside right when the team was about to run out of the tunnel.

I'm guessing a lot of students had the same displeasure for the ND game. So they probably just figured they might as well pregame a little longer and avoid having to deal with the congestion than get there early for Akron.


September 15th, 2013 at 8:26 AM ^

I don't understand why people are so surprised about this. After they announced the new policy the students exploded about how terrible it would be and how it would do nothing to fix the problem. As of now what have we learned? You make students show up to games they already showed up for and wait hours to do it. The problem of poor attendance at na games still exists just like it did but instead of having people walk in, it forces the good fans to wait hours in line. This system just makes it worse for everybody. You can rant about how the front row seats are great but I'm willing to eat he students who wait 8 hours would easily trade frontrow for just a decen row 20 with no wait.

The solution is an attendance policy that cuts tickets from people who show up late and skip games not a system that blindly makes people wait.

Shorty the Bea…

September 15th, 2013 at 10:52 AM ^

Did I ever say you don't have a right to complain about it?  I voiced my own opinion.  I fought for this nation in the Middle East so you'd have that right as well.  So the next time you want to win an argument on the internet and sound all big, please continue.  However, I don't think you'd use that tone to my face.


Go Blue,

Oh, and you're welcome.

814 East U

September 15th, 2013 at 2:57 AM ^

You can only piss people off so much before you "lose" them. DB or the next AD will eventually have to ask the same people that are getting shafted (prices, students, etc.) to come back to the stadium and buy season tickets. Wasn't it DB on 60 minutes that stated he wants the gameday experience at Michigan Stadium something you can't get from the couch?

...Yeah I'm not seeing it. I am seeing 70 inch flat screens getting cheaper and MOAR awesome each year while my section 9 row 77 seats are staying the same. 

Can't wait for next year's schedule!!! 



September 15th, 2013 at 9:39 AM ^

My mommy and daddy didn't buy me tickets. I had to buy them myself and I put money aside for 4 years to buy them. You'd be pricing out a lot of students like me who wouldn't buy tickets at those prices. 

The kids who's parents buy their tickets won't care either way and still won't show up. Congrats, you just made the problem worse.