Athletics puts cap on student tickets

Individual prices for football tickets have been a source of hostility between students and University officials in the last few years.

Many students feel the University has taken advantage of them by raising ticket prices for the homecoming games. “I think it’s ridiculous when we already pay for that in our tuition,” said Candice Wilder, a computer information systems student from Washington state.

“They should know ahead of time how many students they have and provide free tickets for all of us.”

Tuition and fee payments cover free admission into home games for all the other sporting events on campus. This season’s four home football games are the only on-campus sporting events that have a cap on how many students can enter free of charge.

“We put a cap on football because it’s an extremely expensive sport, and all schools have to do this,” said FAMU Athletic Director Joseph Ramsey, adding that the University follows a trend set by most other athletic departments in the state by allowing one-fourth of its students inside the stadium for free.

Ramsey said students receive an exceptional deal on tickets to FAMU football games.

“Students are actually getting a lot more than what they are putting in,” he said.

Through tuition, students are paying $8.75 per credit hour towards the athletic program.

A student taking 30 hours a year will be paying $262.50 toward a ticket package that is valued at $416.

This sets up a scenario where the athletic department actually loses money instead of bringing in much-needed revenue that could go toward major projects.

But the athletic department is working to find a way to pay for the renovation of Bragg Memorial Stadium and the construction of a football field house.

Ramsey said raising student fees was brought up as a possible option, but it was quickly dismissed as a bad idea.

“Raising the fees would help, but I don’t know if taxing our students is the best way to (pay for new facilities),” said Ramsey. “A lot of other universities do it, but I don’t know if it’s the best way for us to get where were trying to go. There are other methods in which to raise money for the new facilities that should be explored.”

These other methods include bringing in revenues from independent sources to finance the project. The athletic department is currently building up its fundraising staff so it can start regenerating and raising new funds for the University.

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