Athletic Department to announce need-based ticket prices

Ruby Wallau/Daily
Buy this photo

By Max Cohen, Managing Sports Editor
and Jake Lourim, Managing Sports Editor
Published February 22, 2015

The Michigan Athletic Department will announce a new policy Monday regarding the prices of student tickets, in which students demonstrating financial need are eligible for pricing discounts.

Students who meet the eligibility criteria for the Federal Pell Grant will be able to purchase season tickets for football, men’s basketball and hockey at a discounted rate. The standard prices for football, men’s basketball and hockey tickets in 2015-16 will be $175, $200 and $150, respectively, while the discounted prices are $100, $120 and $90.

The University Office of Financial Aid’s website states that the need-based grants are awarded “only to the lowest-income families,” and a student cannot receive the award “for more than 12 full-time semesters.”

The Athletic Department announced in October the changes to football ticket prices, which dropped from $295 in 2014. The price is now lower than that of men’s basketball season tickets, which remained the same, though Dave Ablauf, the Associate Athletic Director for Public and Media Relations, noted that the per-game prices are still higher for football than for basketball.

Students can renew tickets beginning on March 11, and the renewal period lasts until March 27 at 5 p.m. The seating policies will remain unchanged — for the 2015 football season, seat locations will be decided solely based on attendance and not on class level.

The idea for need-based pricing for tickets came from Central Student Government President Bobby Dishell. When Dishell worked with the Athletic Department earlier in the school year to come up with a plan for lowering football ticket prices, he spoke with members of the Athletic Department about the possibility of special need-based pricing.

According to Dishell, the Athletic Department representatives he spoke with about need-based pricing initially thought that the plan would be difficult to implement. But eventually, in conjunction with the Office of Financial Aid, a plan was worked out.

Dishell believes the availability of need-based pricing is the first of its kind in collegiate athletics.

“Michigan athletics, it’s something you see so many people rally around,” Dishell said over the phone Sunday night. “So many people you meet talk about their experience with Michigan athletics, and the prices were very high, extremely high. I kind of realized, why shouldn’t your aid package expand? Why should it not carry over to another University unit?”

The Office of Financial Aid will begin emailing eligible students Monday with instructions detailing how to purchase tickets.