Letter to the Editor: Ticket profiteering for VCU v UVA

[caption id="attachment_13410" align="alignright" width="300"]<a href="http://www.vcuramnation.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/OUCH.png"><img class="wp-image-13410 size-medium" src="http://www.vcuramnation.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/OUCH-300x174.png" alt="VCU's 50+ sellout streak has sent ticket prices soaring on sites like Stubhub.com." width="300" height="174" /></a> VCU's 50+ sellout streak has sent ticket prices soaring on sites like Stubhub.com.[/caption]

VCU hoops has become one of the hottest tickets in college basketball. While that provides and amazing atmosphere at games, it has also provided new challenges, or shall we say opportunities for some fans, depending on which side of the transaction you sit. Here's a letter we recently received on such a challenge for 2003 alum, Mike Amodie.

Dear RamNation-

I love your pre/post game write-ups, general analysis, and videos. As an out of town working stiff, your platform provides a great resource to stay current. I was curious what the folks thought of the $300 seats at the STU. I'm not sure my family would've paid that to see me walk for my degree (to be fair the sound system wasn't updated).

Joking aside, is RamNation exploring the resale market that popped up for the UVA game? I was curious about the ticket process and hoped someone did a piece on it. I completely get that old law of supply and demand, but I completely didn't get how VCU had entered into such a market. Is the future for Ram basketball where a few 'fans' can gobble up general admission tickets and hope for lunch money?

Perhaps I'm being harsh, but it gave me a big sadface when my interactions with the traders on Craigslist suggested a profit first, fan second attitude.

I asked a few of the sellers "Is it OK to cheer for UVA and wear blue/orange? I was under the impression all tickets are season holder tickets?"

The seller of '2 center court section 24 for $300' responded "Yeah we are season ticket holders but I don't mind if you cheer for uva haha".

The seller of a $210 ticket *SALE- IF YOU BUY 4, $790, responded "Yes just like for VCU fans civility rules. I have not encountered issues before from either side".

In about 15 minutes I emailed to ~12 "fans", selling tickets for at least $120/ticket++. They all responded with tickets still available as of Thursday, 8pm. Being a fan of the opponent was never an issue when presented. The optics should be telling Saturday- empty seats, blue/orange seats should be easy to spot.

My understanding is that the season ticket holders, presumably Ram fans, had exclusive right to buy seats before the general public. Is this just how fans roll now? One of the members of the 2012 AD search committee posted a section 25, row F for $299. I would hope at that level of acclaim you would be a fan, so perhaps this is the new accepted price for the show. They are center court and probably still for sale if interested.

To be clear, I don't want to sound as if I am bashing profiteering. To do so would be naive at best. I would complain about the VCU ticket distribution system, and specifically the exclusivity of season ticket holder to purchase tickets ahead of the general public. Anyone else have any thoughts or suggestions?

Good luck to all the profiteers chasing that cool couple hundo. I'll take my frustration out on those quarterly request for donations.

Mike Amodie, alum 2003
About author
Licensed Virginia Realtor and part-time basketball writer. Co-founder of VCURamNation.com and A10Talk.com.
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Mat Shelton-Eide
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