Friday night ticket blues
As pointed out on EO, BC broke out the Groupon promotions for this game. As we've pointed out before, discounting tickets becomes a tricky proposition as BC balances the need for revenue, butts in the seats and their relationship with their most loyal fans.
For a business like BC football -- which only has limited inventory of seven home games -- I am against discounting/flash deals. I think the Athletic Department is better off doing private promotions with current season ticket holders for undersold games. BC does that somewhat, but obviously not to the point where the game will be close to capacity.
The second issue is attendance on non-Saturday games. In theory, the Boston population should be more than enough to support the team, but we know that a good chunk of the fanbase comes from beyond a two hour radius. A weeknight home game becomes tough for those who don't live close. The weeknight and Friday night games are not going away. So perhaps BC should start tarping sections of the stadium for those non-Saturday games. Northwestern -- another private school in a big city -- started tarping this year using potted plants.
For the longest time the limited secondary market for BC tickets helped sales and attendance. But as TV coverage has improved and as the number of home games has shifted from five and six to seven (and eight if you count the game in Foxboro), and as the online market place has enabled all sorts of reselling, BC is stuck. They are not the only college with the problem. Video boards and winning football will help. Incentives for students and season ticket holders will help too. But at some point they have to draw the line. Maybe instead of dumping tickets for Friday games, BC should think about living with the empty seats.
Or as I've written about before -- turn Friday night games into a huge deal. Own it like Virginia Tech used to own Thursday nights. Then maybe good football, a new tradition and a pumped up environment might make the night a consistent sellout.