Chris Fuller: 'Work left to do' on selling season tickets

UT down 2,000-2,500 from last season's total; 11,000 remain

The technology and support system are in place for the Tennessee athletic department to enhance football fans' ticket-buying experience, but the tangible results aren't keeping pace just yet.

As of Friday, the school had sold roughly 61,500 of its 72,500 season tickets, said UT senior associate athletic director for external operations Chris Fuller. That's about 2,000-2,500 tickets fewer than what was sold at this point last year.

"We've got some work left to do for sure," Fuller said. "When you look at the factors in our case, obviously most of our fans lock in on performance.

"If you win, they'll come."

Despite having just three hard sellouts in 2010, UT ranked sixth in the nation with an average of 99,781 fans for its seven games at Neyland Stadium, which seats 102,455.

It marked a slight increase from the total amassed in Lane Kiffin's much-hyped 2009 season, but there continues to be room to grow while Derek Dooley attempts to rebuild the program and rejuvenate a fan base that's dealt with more adversity than success in the past three years.

Fuller and his staff, though, can only control what they control, which is why a culture change remains ongoing behind the walls of UT's ticket offices.

"Tennessee football has been a revenue engine that's driven a lot of successful businesses," Fuller said. "I think it's been successful for so long, I don't think people allow themselves to consider the alternative.

"I think there's a certain percentage of people who won't understand that unless it fails."

In June, UT inked a deal with IMG College Ticket Solutions to provide a fresh, pro-active approach to not just how it finds new customers, but also how it maintains strong relationships with those who have been filling Neyland Stadium for years. The department basically underwent a face lift, going from a staff that largely just fielded ticket orders to a group of eight to 12 active sellers who are supervised by a recently hired general manager and motivated by performance-related bonuses.

Since the IMG team started actively selling at the beginning of the month, UT has sold more than 300 season tickets and 200 blocks of group tickets, Fuller said.

"What (used to) happen was we spent most of our time servicing the upper 5 to 10 percent (of ticketholders), but now we've got a mechanism to make sure we're reaching out personally to the $100 donor in Kingsport who has never gotten a direct call," Fuller said. "Now, all of a sudden, he's got a personal ticket representative in the department that he can develop a relationship with."

A full block of season tickets for UT's eight home games costs $390, up $30 from last season's seven-game price. A donation of $100 or more is required to purchase a full season's worth, but that's not required for the two, three-game mini-packs that are currently being offered.

The "Orange" pack offers tickets to games against Buffalo (Oct. 1), LSU (Oct. 15) and Middle Tennessee State (Nov. 5), while the "White" pack boasts games against Cincinnati (Sept. 10), South Carolina (Oct. 29) and Vanderbilt (Nov. 19). Prices are determined by the location of the seat.

Individual tickets also remain for road games at Florida, Arkansas and Kentucky.

In the not-so-distant past, season ticket holders would typically gobble up whatever tickets UT was allotted for road games, but the shaky economy and the Vols' shaky, on-field performance have lessened the demand, Fuller said.

"There are certain places in the league that our fans don't enjoy going to," said Fuller, who noted that a number of the Vols' SEC rivals have returned more and more tickets for their games at Neyland Stadium in the past few years.

"It's easier to endure a hostile crowd when you're beating them"

Individual tickets for all of the Vols' home games go on sale Aug. 8, but Fuller hinted that UT could put tickets for the Sept. 3 season opener against Montana on the market as soon as today.

Fuller said tickets for the Buffalo game, which replaced a road trip to North Carolina after the school bought out of the contract last season, will be the hardest sell not just because the Bulls are one of the lowest-profile teams in major college football, but also because UT's fall break is that weekend.

For the first time, all tickets will have bar codes that will be scanned upon entrance, an initiative that will allow fans to print their tickets from home and will also provide UT with hard data on who is and who isn't using their tickets. It's also hoped that technology that allows season ticketholders to e-mail their tickets to a friend if they're unable to go to the game will be in place by the season opener.

"We're trying to find ways to provide more of a convenience factor for our fans." Fuller said. "And to make it easier to sell a ticket."

Andrew Gribble may be reached at 865-342-6327. Follow him at http://twitter.com/Andrew_Gribble and http://blogs.knoxnews.com/gribble

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Comments » 78

dbc5361 writes:

Keep building the building!!! More seats!!

PHAT_VOL writes:

Call Mr. Hamilton. Maybe he can help!
GO VOLS !!

digthevols writes:

Prediction came true! 10-15 years ago, I knew the day would come that UT would struggle on the field and the economy would as well. UT cared nothing about the "little guy," the loyal guy --- only the ones with big bucks. The latter tend to be lazy and spoiled and don't show up in the lean "win" years. Loyal fans always come. In the rough years of the 70's and 80's, the stadium was always packed --- regardless! Nowadays, the bigwigs don't want to come unless there's a winner. Could UT be so desperate as to be encouraging "the good ol'boys" again to purchase their plentiful tickets!? Marketing 101

Voluvr writes:

Mr. Hamilton did a great job as head of the VASF now the Tennessee Fund and its army of volunteers that fund raise and handle the customer service of selling most of those season tickets. Funny how they weren't mentioned in this article. Give them the names of past customers and incentivize them with attainable goals and see what happens!

Signed....former VASF member.

Good job on the new technology though.

Voluvr writes:

in response to digthevols:

Prediction came true! 10-15 years ago, I knew the day would come that UT would struggle on the field and the economy would as well. UT cared nothing about the "little guy," the loyal guy --- only the ones with big bucks. The latter tend to be lazy and spoiled and don't show up in the lean "win" years. Loyal fans always come. In the rough years of the 70's and 80's, the stadium was always packed --- regardless! Nowadays, the bigwigs don't want to come unless there's a winner. Could UT be so desperate as to be encouraging "the good ol'boys" again to purchase their plentiful tickets!? Marketing 101

Good points. Seems all of sports is about the money. I will say I'm sure there are a lot of big rollers that are loyal fans too.

The economy has hit everyone at every level. Hopefully, we'll quit trying borrow our way to prosperity. I doesn't work.

10-15 yrs. ago I was selling in the VASF season tickets upper deck for 500.00 per pair for the donation alone. I think 250 was the lowest in the old upper part on the river side. Back then, we were selling 60-70,000 tickets every year. Peyton helped too. It's been about the money for a long time and it can't go back.

Here's an idea: Leftover tickets....Priceline!

onevol writes:

As a former ticket holder from the Battle era through the 90's I say that Neyland Stadium was not over built, just over priced. UT did everything possible to gig their fans and ruin a great college football venue. The bad food, outrageous donation requirement, and shrinking parking possibilities was just the beginning to the end. The jumbotron was also a major intrusion to the experience.

VolGrad writes:

QUOTE: "We've got some work left to do for sure," Fuller said. "When you look at the factors in our case, obviously most of our fans lock in on performance."

No, Mr. Fuller, most of our fans lock in on price these days. It is called "discretionary spending" and all families have much less of that right now.

LJS1984 writes:

JUST WAIT. The price for season tickets will drop when there are still plenty left around the middle of August. That's usually when the minimum donation is dropped. In other words you can get good seats for a fourth of what they usually cost.

VolzsFan writes:

"I think it's been successful for so long, I don't think people allow themselves to consider the alternative".

And who was it that had it at an unprecedented in UT history success? Oh yea, the guy that idiot Hamilton fired. Those chickens have came home to roost.

"It marked a slight increase from the total amassed in Lane Kiffin's much-hyped 2009 season, but there continues to be room to grow while Derek Dooley attempts to rebuild the program and rejuvenate a fan base that's dealt with more adversity than success in the past three years".

Some of you in the vocal minority where tossing Lane's salad. The truth is hitting you hard.

VolFanInTheBoro (Inactive) writes:

in response to Witch_Doctors_Daddy:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

3:29 am. seriously you need to get a life other than your obsession with Go Vols Xtra

volspaws writes:

One suggestion from a fan that used to love the Neyland game day experience but now finds it overblown and ostentacious...tone down the video board presentations and the obnoxious sound effects...less is MORE...some of the video shorts so corny they're embarrassing...I long for the days of quiety watching the band march down the hill an into the stadium....the excited chatter of fans....i even miss the cigar smoke....some traditions don't need to be tampered with...whoever introduced the MTV/hip hop culture into the Neyland game day experience needs to be fired.

jpark001 writes:

In all likelihood, IMG has really been brought in (and compensated) to be the bad guy when UTAD announces that all the remaining "grandfathered" no yearly donation seats in Neyland Stadium will now require a per year donation to keep/purchase the seats in the future. Hamilton/UTAD has had this final seat transition in the works for years but somebody was going to have to take the vocal PR hit; better that be an outside firm than the UTAD and you might as well do it during a down time in the program so that when the program is back and tickets are again in demand, all the premo seats coveted will now all have a yearly contributions tied to them forever going forward.

lahvolman2 writes:

in response to digthevols:

Prediction came true! 10-15 years ago, I knew the day would come that UT would struggle on the field and the economy would as well. UT cared nothing about the "little guy," the loyal guy --- only the ones with big bucks. The latter tend to be lazy and spoiled and don't show up in the lean "win" years. Loyal fans always come. In the rough years of the 70's and 80's, the stadium was always packed --- regardless! Nowadays, the bigwigs don't want to come unless there's a winner. Could UT be so desperate as to be encouraging "the good ol'boys" again to purchase their plentiful tickets!? Marketing 101

Excellant points.....I can remember when we were winless going into the Bama game and tickets were selling for $400.00 on the street... Hamilton era stole the heart out of the true little man fan base.... now when you can see practically every game on a 42" plazma HD TV 10 feet in front of you, why bother driving 3 hours and paying these prices..... and yes I am a true fan... have had season tickets since 1968...and yes we are some of the ones who got screwed out of good seats because we refused to pay an extra $3000.00 to keep them so we got kicked to the end zone... Thanks Mike...

miketn6 writes:

Amazing how hard it is to get a good parking pass with so many seats available, and I'm top 50th percentile in TN Fund ranking. UTAD has some issues to work through.

Classof72 writes:

in response to volspaws:

One suggestion from a fan that used to love the Neyland game day experience but now finds it overblown and ostentacious...tone down the video board presentations and the obnoxious sound effects...less is MORE...some of the video shorts so corny they're embarrassing...I long for the days of quiety watching the band march down the hill an into the stadium....the excited chatter of fans....i even miss the cigar smoke....some traditions don't need to be tampered with...whoever introduced the MTV/hip hop culture into the Neyland game day experience needs to be fired.

Amen to that.

IMG? They should call it OMG! Pay to have a loudspeaker yell commercial propaganda at me while I'm trying to watch the Vols and hear the Pride of the Southland? Are the North Koreans running the video board? For a thousand dollars a couple? I don't think so. I won't pay to be harassed while watching my beloved Vols. They should go punt themselves and start over. (And there is still no 'T' in Adidas.)

digthevols writes:

in response to TennVolAlum:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Sincere apologies for offending you ... I obviously struck a personal chord.

NickDanger-ThirdEye writes:

in response to Witch_Doctors_Daddy:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

CDD will have about 15 grants to offer in 2012. A figure somewhat below the hyped 28 by you and CSS. By NSD we will have the right people. Log off and get back to work.

RollTideJoe writes:

One thing that is ruining gameday for all football fans is StubHub and scalpers. These people buy huge lots of tickets to every venue and the only way anyone can see a game aside from buying season tickets is to pay through the nose to see a game. It's become outrageous to buy this way. And many, like myself, can't go to every game whether it's Knoxville or Tuscaloosa or Athens, so a game here or there is our only shot. Yep, it is forcing people to watch the 55" TV and stay home....and save huge money. But, it still isn't like gameday at the stadium.

gortrtt writes:

**"The technology and support system are in place for the Tennessee athletic department to enhance football fans' ticket-buying experience, but the tangible results aren't keeping pace just yet."**

Business-school jibberish.

Please, Dr. Cheek, hire an AD who understands that the dollar generator is winning. And please hire someone who understands (and loves) Tennessee.

tmartin writes:

in response to volspaws:

One suggestion from a fan that used to love the Neyland game day experience but now finds it overblown and ostentacious...tone down the video board presentations and the obnoxious sound effects...less is MORE...some of the video shorts so corny they're embarrassing...I long for the days of quiety watching the band march down the hill an into the stadium....the excited chatter of fans....i even miss the cigar smoke....some traditions don't need to be tampered with...whoever introduced the MTV/hip hop culture into the Neyland game day experience needs to be fired.

They already have been fired.

CCLC writes:

Too bad they don't offer a mini-pak with the Georgia game included..... I could flip quite a few of those!
just sayin'

stevefrommemphis writes:

8 to 12 commission based ticket sellers. Ha. Here's what I'll tell my "personal ticket representative" when he calls:

1. Home schedule is getting worse and worse, and 2011 home schedule is the worst in Tennessee history. Dropping home and home vs North Carolina to schedule Buffalo was a disgrace. Season ticket holders pay $40 - $60 per game for tickets that end up in the trash can, then UT wants a per seat contribution on top of that? UT-Martin, MTSU, Buffalo, ... -- where does it end? Farragut High, Austin-East?

2. Here's an idea to balance your budget - CUT ATHLETIC DEPT SPENDING.

3. Jumbotron is a noisy intrusion into the game experience. If I wanted to see televised advertisements, I'd sit at home and watch the game. During time outs, I want to hear the band or just get some peace and quiet. Turn that d----- Jumbotron off, or at least put in on "mute".

4. The only thing Mike Hamilton ever did for the little guy is give us a chance to buy seatbacks for our bench seats. Now at least the 300 pounder next to us can't steal our 18 inches.

5. UTAD has always thought demand for tickets is inelastic, but you're wrong. You treat the old fans like dirt by building the Tennessee Terrace and kicking them to the end zone or out of the stadium (see lahvolman2's excellent comments) and you force the students to purchase their tickets, meaning a lot of them decide that sitting in the dorm playing video games or drinking beer on Cumberland Ave. is a better alternative. Those kids aren't going to be back after they graduate.

6. Forcing all ticket holders to give through the Tennessee Fund was another public relations debacle for the university. Buying worthless tickets to the Buffalo game is my contribution to the athletic dept. If I want to make a contribution to the school, I don't want it to have to go through the Tennessee Fund.

In short, I'm about fed up with the athletic department and the school in general.

OrangePride writes:

in response to digthevols:

Prediction came true! 10-15 years ago, I knew the day would come that UT would struggle on the field and the economy would as well. UT cared nothing about the "little guy," the loyal guy --- only the ones with big bucks. The latter tend to be lazy and spoiled and don't show up in the lean "win" years. Loyal fans always come. In the rough years of the 70's and 80's, the stadium was always packed --- regardless! Nowadays, the bigwigs don't want to come unless there's a winner. Could UT be so desperate as to be encouraging "the good ol'boys" again to purchase their plentiful tickets!? Marketing 101

I think you have just about put together a spot on point. To buy a season seat, which is apparantly what concerns them, you need to pony up 1000 smackers for the "right to buy the required two tickets." So, for two tickets in the corners, end zones and most upper decks, you are looking at almost a two grand layout..not to mention the gameday expenses of attending. For most families and "little guys" this is just not really feasible in any sense. It has always been just the average folks who rabidly attended these games and yelled their heads off. That has changed in the last 3 years. Last year I bought seats from another set of fans...bigwigs as you call them. They never came til the game had started and they were gone by the end of the third period.....if they came at all. Perhaps not typical, but it goes to your point that the school seems to be geared towards bigger money at the exclusion of regular folks. They need to roll back that required donation, and they need to do more to attract average income families. JMO. (not that anyone up there on the Hill will read or take note of any of the posts on here)

GreerVol22 writes:

Never understimate the power of 10+% unemployment or 1080p resolution on a 60" Samsung. IF you doubt that, pick any NASCAR venue and look at the seating past 2 years.

my solution is simple...Upper Deck South from GG to QQ...$20, no sales to dealers and put a PizzaHut/Taco Bell/KFC on that end and concession sales will make up the difference.

86vol writes:

in response to volspaws:

One suggestion from a fan that used to love the Neyland game day experience but now finds it overblown and ostentacious...tone down the video board presentations and the obnoxious sound effects...less is MORE...some of the video shorts so corny they're embarrassing...I long for the days of quiety watching the band march down the hill an into the stadium....the excited chatter of fans....i even miss the cigar smoke....some traditions don't need to be tampered with...whoever introduced the MTV/hip hop culture into the Neyland game day experience needs to be fired.

Brother, you said it. They've tried so hard to make it like a pro environment and they've succeded. Just like pro stadiums, people show up when you're winning, sit home and watch it on tv when you're not. And like NFL games the television requirements with ongoing, extended commercial breaks make sitting in the stands a painful experience.

lknvol writes:

This day had to come with a weasel like Hamilton running the department. The AD did all they could to run off the "little" guy and embrace the corporate money guys. Trouble is, when they can't give the tickets away because of poor performance the tickets go unused because the corporate guys have no interest in Tennessee. The University has one more firing to take care of...Jimmy Cheek. Only then can TN athletics start to heal. As long as he is here we will have problems. Maybe they can give the weasel a few more tickets and load Cheek up on his way out the door.

Tater12 writes:

in response to volspaws:

One suggestion from a fan that used to love the Neyland game day experience but now finds it overblown and ostentacious...tone down the video board presentations and the obnoxious sound effects...less is MORE...some of the video shorts so corny they're embarrassing...I long for the days of quiety watching the band march down the hill an into the stadium....the excited chatter of fans....i even miss the cigar smoke....some traditions don't need to be tampered with...whoever introduced the MTV/hip hop culture into the Neyland game day experience needs to be fired.

Amen! Sell the big screen, lower the ticket price and reduce the required season ticket tax. For the past 15 years I drive 3-1/2 hours one way to see the Vols play,pay to park, and walk 1 mile to my seat up the ramps. If they need to play music over the speaker system, play some Go Big Orange music, not this rap/hip hop...errrrr stuff. See you this year, GO VOLS!

VolAtUGA11 writes:

Are these season ticket prices, fees really that much different from any school in the SEC that isn't Vandy? Seems like this isn't just a UT problem but a big time college football problem.

orangeman1 writes:

No way I would pay $500 as a season ticket holder to see 4 good games vs Cinci, LSU,Georgia, and SC. Tickets for the rest of the home games will be available before kickoff for $20 or less and I guarantee you could get tickets to Georgia,SC, and Cinci for $50 or less.

JayTee writes:

It's been a screw the fan attidtude for years now it's coming back to bite them on the butt. Speaking of butts not many I've seen lately fits in a 18 inch seat.

I finally got tired of the legalized scalping and quit (Make a Certain Donation in Order to Guarantee Your Tickets). Not only did they lose my donation but my company would contribute double the money I gave.

.

trollhunter writes:

in response to osu2:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Your end is near on this site.

bkwats2003#237114 writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Instead of worrying about UT stats why don't you worry about this stat. Why do more UT fans than Vandy fans show up to watch TN play in Nashville?

Instead of trolling on the Big Orange website, why don't you get on the CommodeDoors site and help rasie money to expand their stadium. We need more seats for the Orange clad faithful.

You guys are such an embarrassment to the SEC. Why don't you troll on some Conference USA site where you belong?

Rookie2 writes:

They need to start tearing out the bleacher style seats and replacing them with chairbacks. Forget about trying to be the biggest stadium around and start focusing on creating a more comfortable atmosphere for fans to enjoy the game. You want to sell out section GG through PP...??, put in chairbacks like the other side. There aren't a lot of people anymore that want to pay over $1000 a year to go to a game and squeeze their butts into a 12" seat because the sweaty meat head next to them is 200 pounds over weight. CHAIRBACKS!

Vol_in_GA writes:

in response to Witch_Doctors_Daddy:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I didn't realize the Krystal drive-thru was open at 5 a.m.

DaddyVol writes:

in response to Tater12:

Amen! Sell the big screen, lower the ticket price and reduce the required season ticket tax. For the past 15 years I drive 3-1/2 hours one way to see the Vols play,pay to park, and walk 1 mile to my seat up the ramps. If they need to play music over the speaker system, play some Go Big Orange music, not this rap/hip hop...errrrr stuff. See you this year, GO VOLS!

Wouldn't be a bad idea to start wearing orange jersey's again.

The yellow baby poo in a diaper shirts we wore in the Music City Bowl made us look like we need to hold some charity car washes so that we can afford new uniforms!!!!

NashvillePreds writes:

If/when you win, they will come.

VOLinATL writes:

They are going to scan the tickets upon entering? Get ready for loooong lines entering the stadium!

tdforvols writes:

I purchase the ESPN Gameplan from Comcast in my area for around $129.00. For this I am guarantied to be able to watch all the Vols games on TV plus they throw in the whole Basketball season as a bonus. With deals like this why would I ever leave my big screen and drive hundreds of miles to Neyland?

generalneylandsghost writes:

in response to CantStandSaban:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

YOU HAVE AWAKEN MY SPIRIT. YOUR BASHING IS QUITE DISTURBING. LEAVE THIS SITE OR BAD THINGS WILL HAPPEN

NickDanger-ThirdEye writes:

in response to Vol_in_GA:

I didn't realize the Krystal drive-thru was open at 5 a.m.

WDD looks good in a paper hat.

Y10 writes:

in response to JayTee:

It's been a screw the fan attidtude for years now it's coming back to bite them on the butt. Speaking of butts not many I've seen lately fits in a 18 inch seat.

I finally got tired of the legalized scalping and quit (Make a Certain Donation in Order to Guarantee Your Tickets). Not only did they lose my donation but my company would contribute double the money I gave.

.

You're right JT! It certainly has been a screw the fan attitude and it's not getting any better. I previously had decent parking and they've kept moving me over the years, blaming it on giving land back to the city for beautification, blah, blah, blah. No, I kept getting moved because I wasn't donating enough, to the point now I'm required to take a freaking train to get within walking distance of the stadium!

The price of tickets is rediculous when you consider the caliber of talent. Montana? Buffalo? I mean I used to get excited about the opening games, but am I going to drive 2.5 hrs to see them open with Montana at a crappy start time? Nope, but I still pay for 4 tickets to that game. Like somebody else said, there's my donation to the athletic department. And the people sitting beside me will be happy too because they'll have more room. They can even use my fancy, dancy seat backs that I pay extra for!

I love watching the big orange, look forward to the start of every new season. But Hammy and the gang have taken the luster from attending in person. I went there, my son went there, my daughter intends on going there in 4 years, but I've about had it with the "you don't really matter because you don't donate enough" attitude that you get when talking to someone up there. If they would consider the money I've spent on 2 educations and the third one coming, plus all the money I've spent for season tickets through the years, I might be considered a good donor. But, they don't and this well may be the last year. I'll scalp a ticket on the strip and only go to the games worth going to, pay to park behind the Tin Roof, and still come out ahead.

Pompey writes:

....this story points to the fact that in my 50 years of following UT sports this is the lowest point that I have ever seen the athletic department....no guarantee it will ever return to its former greatness....sad doesn’t even begin to describe it !

Tennesseeato writes:

I can't believe no one is talking about the obvious reason for the decline in ticket sales (in addition to performance) -- home opponents. Buffalo? Montana? MTSU? Cincinnati isn't horrible, but they are hardly a marquis non-conference opponent. I can even forgive MTSU -- they're an improving in-state program. But to have a I-AA opponent AND Buffalo on the schedule is ridiculous.

I don't believe that we need to schedule a murder's row of non-conference opponents, but fans need to have 1 or 2 games that interest them in order to balance-out the glorified scrimmages. That's especially true in the odd-number years when Alabama and UF are on the road.

We ducked a quality road game (UNC) and traded it for an unwatchable home game (Buffalo). When that return game from UNC was scheduled we'll have yet another unwatchable opponent added to the schedule. In other words, fans went from buying tickets to one quality game to having to shell-out money for 2 games they probably don't want to attend in the first place. Going to a game is expensive, ticket prices aside.

As a season-ticket holder for many years, I can honestly say it's getting harder and harder to justify the contribution and ticket expense.

Go4Two writes:

in response to digthevols:

Prediction came true! 10-15 years ago, I knew the day would come that UT would struggle on the field and the economy would as well. UT cared nothing about the "little guy," the loyal guy --- only the ones with big bucks. The latter tend to be lazy and spoiled and don't show up in the lean "win" years. Loyal fans always come. In the rough years of the 70's and 80's, the stadium was always packed --- regardless! Nowadays, the bigwigs don't want to come unless there's a winner. Could UT be so desperate as to be encouraging "the good ol'boys" again to purchase their plentiful tickets!? Marketing 101

Not just the bigwigs. The fans that came on board during the 90's got spoiled. I remember seeing us lose to Rutgers to a pack house. Then the next week we beat N.D.

IheartTN writes:

Perhaps if you didn't have to make such a large "donation" for tickets, people would be more willing to purchase them. We have season tickets and honestly, it gets harder every year to commit to buying b/c of the donation status. I love TN football and I love being there, but I can buy tickets off the street (good seats) for less than I'm paying for season tickets.

TennVol01 writes:

In these economic times, only the rich can afford season tickets. They use their privileged tax cuts to buy them.

orangeman1 writes:

in response to Navalorange:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I dont think Fulmer's complacency lost fans as much as it was fans' unrealistic expecations. I dont call having a top 10 recruiting class ready to sign when he was fired and being tied for the best regular season record in the SEC less than a year before he was fired complacent. Many fans have been complaining about Fulmer since 99 or 2002 and alot of fans even wishing Fulmer would lose so he could finally be fired. Alot of people just had unrealistic expectations for the UT program due to Fulmer's unmatched success prior to 2001 and got spoiled and acted like babies because Fulmer couldnt win the SEC championship game. Now , 3 years later we are just hoping for 7 wins. Do you even know how many season tickets were sold during Fulmer's last few years compared to today? If fans wished for Fulmer to lose or quit going to the games because of unrealistic expectations then they werent good fans anyway. I like Dooley alot more than Kiffin, but replacing NC with Montana and only having 4 good home games just doesnt seem worth the price of a season ticket to me.

zqvol writes:

in response to stevefrommemphis:

8 to 12 commission based ticket sellers. Ha. Here's what I'll tell my "personal ticket representative" when he calls:

1. Home schedule is getting worse and worse, and 2011 home schedule is the worst in Tennessee history. Dropping home and home vs North Carolina to schedule Buffalo was a disgrace. Season ticket holders pay $40 - $60 per game for tickets that end up in the trash can, then UT wants a per seat contribution on top of that? UT-Martin, MTSU, Buffalo, ... -- where does it end? Farragut High, Austin-East?

2. Here's an idea to balance your budget - CUT ATHLETIC DEPT SPENDING.

3. Jumbotron is a noisy intrusion into the game experience. If I wanted to see televised advertisements, I'd sit at home and watch the game. During time outs, I want to hear the band or just get some peace and quiet. Turn that d----- Jumbotron off, or at least put in on "mute".

4. The only thing Mike Hamilton ever did for the little guy is give us a chance to buy seatbacks for our bench seats. Now at least the 300 pounder next to us can't steal our 18 inches.

5. UTAD has always thought demand for tickets is inelastic, but you're wrong. You treat the old fans like dirt by building the Tennessee Terrace and kicking them to the end zone or out of the stadium (see lahvolman2's excellent comments) and you force the students to purchase their tickets, meaning a lot of them decide that sitting in the dorm playing video games or drinking beer on Cumberland Ave. is a better alternative. Those kids aren't going to be back after they graduate.

6. Forcing all ticket holders to give through the Tennessee Fund was another public relations debacle for the university. Buying worthless tickets to the Buffalo game is my contribution to the athletic dept. If I want to make a contribution to the school, I don't want it to have to go through the Tennessee Fund.

In short, I'm about fed up with the athletic department and the school in general.

Well said!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

orangecountyvols writes:

in response to InDestruCtible:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Before you 'self destruct' let me fill you in.........you who knows not a lot about that which you speak.

When people in those seats really get into it, it is pretty darned loud, regardless of what you say or think.

Example........even when N S seated fewer people, at the Alabama game in 1982, the place was so loud that for the 110 mile trip from Knoxville to Bristol, our ears were hurting from the screaming, whistling, and sheer bedlam........that we could not hear what each other in the car was saying.

You can stick to your theory, many of us will disagree.

stevefrommemphis writes:

in response to TennVol01:

In these economic times, only the rich can afford season tickets. They use their privileged tax cuts to buy them.

Most of those rich people have seen their incomes and espcially their net worth decline substantially in the last five years.

Regarding taxes, for every $1000 they contribute to UT, they only get to count $800 for a tax deduction, for which they will have maybe a $250 reduction in their tax bill. For every $1000 they give, they get a $250 tax reduction, meaning they are still out of pocket for $750. That doesn't count the cost of those Montana, Buffalo, and MTSU tickets, which isn't tax deductible.

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