The first-time matchup between Michigan and Texas on the football field spurred students and alumni to make the trip to Pasadena and support the University’s football team.
Although fans traveled to Pasadena in a number of ways, many opted for the tour packages that were offered by the Alumni Association. The packages included game tickets, hotel accommodations, as well as other benefits, such as an invitation to the official tailgate party sponsored by the Alumni Association and the Tournament of Roses parade.
The price of a standard five-day package for a single person was $1,962. Catherine Niekro, vice president of marketing and communications for the Alumni Association said 1,300 individuals participated in both the five-day and two-day land/air or land-only tour packages.
This year the Alumni Association also sponsored a pep rally the day before the game.
“The pep rally was fantastic. The whole team was there along with the coaches. President Coleman was there as well, along with the marching band and cheerleaders,” said Niekro, who is also a member of the Board for Student Publications that oversees the financial operations of The Michigan Daily.
Along with the pep rally, the Alumni Association held the official University tailgate party prior to the game. Niekro said there was a good turnout with 3,500 people attending the event.
Some students looked for other options in order to make the trip to the Rose Bowl a little less pricey.
Some students opted to buy airplane tickets with connections in other cities in order to offset the cost of traveling to the game. Many students also purchased tickets through the athletic department instead of buying tickets elsewhere.
The University’s loss, however, did not dampen the spirits of some who attended the game.
“It was so much fun. It was an awesome game. (The crowd) was electric,” Engineering junior Andy Wang said. In regards to the loss, Wang said he could swear that the final field goal by Texas wasn’t going to make it.
“All the (Michigan) people started cheering, but then the referees put their hands up and everyone quieted down,” Wang said.
Students who attended the game said that Texas fans had been cordial and friendly while the usual banter existed among the rival fans.
Business junior Bochao Zhange said, “All the Texas fans were really nice, I think it had to do with the fact that it was the first time (the two teams have) played so there was no animosity between the fans.”
Wang echoed similar thoughts regarding the demeanor of their rivals. “Everyone was so nice, probably because of the whole Southern hospitality. Not much gloating after the game from the fans,” he said.