Stanford Athletics announced on Tuesday afternoon that for the second year in a row, it had sold out its public allotment of tickets to the Rose Bowl Game. In addition, a limited allotment of student tickets and “student companion” tickets available to Stanford students with University IDs also sold out in less than two hours on Tuesday evening.
However, controversy arose when it was revealed by some Michigan State fans that they had taken advantage of a Stanford Athletics offer to claim tickets from Stanford’s allotment as well, limiting the access to tickets for Cardinal fans.
Stanford Athletics had previously announced that up to four guaranteed tickets would be made available in advance to both season ticket holders and people who had made a deposit for 2014 season tickets before Rose Bowl ticket sales began. The remainder of the tickets would then be sold to non-season ticket holders through GoStanford.com starting at 4:01 p.m., after all of the guaranteed tickets had been allocated.
According to a Tweet by Senior Assistant Athletic Director Kurt Svoboda, the tickets available to the general public through Stanford sold out in just four minutes after sales opened.
Stanford’s Rose Bowl Game ticket allotment sold out within 4 minutes of non season ticket holder sale. Student sale at 9 pm #gostanford
— Kurt Svoboda (@ksvoboda) December 11, 2013
The sellout came as little surprise after a tremendous season for Stanford. On the back of lofty expectations for the preseason top-five Cardinal, 2013 marked the first year in school history in which Stanford sold out its complete allotment of home games.
Yet there is concern that Michigan State fans may have played some part in the limited ticket availability for the Rose Bowl. Some Spartans fans revealed that they had paid Stanford’s season ticket deposit for access to guaranteed tickets in Stanford’s allotment. Because of this, a smaller allotment of Stanford’s tickets would have been available when the general sale later opened. That concern was fueled by the fact that the deposit for season tickets increased from $100 to $200 on Monday morning before the offer was later withdrawn altogether due to “high demand.”
Much of that concern was alleviated on Wednesday afternoon when two Tweets from Stanford’s Athletic Department — one from the official Stanford Athletics account and another from Svoboda — reported that 95 percent of Stanford’s allotment had gone to current season ticket holders and students.
— Stanford Athletics (@GoStanford) December 11, 2013
Vast majority of Stanford’s #RBG100 ticket sales went to season ticket holders & students. Rest to public + new depositors
— Kurt Svoboda (@ksvoboda) December 11, 2013
Loophole aside, the overall high interest in tickets from Stanford’s opponent also contributed to the rapid sale. Last year, special circumstances had allowed Stanford to slightly exceed its usual allotment due to the fact that Wisconsin was playing in its third straight Rose Bowl and, thus, experienced lower-than-average demand. This year, with Michigan State playing in its first-ever BCS bowl and the historical significance of the 100th installment of the Rose Bowl, ticket allotments for Stanford were much more stringent and prices in the secondary market skyrocketed due to the increased demand.
The Detroit Free Press reported that tickets for this Rose Bowl are, on average, more than twice as expensive as they have been in years past. The average cost of a Rose Bowl ticket on the secondary market as of Tuesday night was reported to be $1,039. In comparison, the average value of a ticket on the secondary market at this point last year was just $432, and corresponding values for the Rose Bowls of 2012, 2011 and 2010 were also just $460, $496 and $466, respectively.
As of 2:00 p.m. Wednesday, the lowest-priced Rose Bowl ticket on secondary ticketing site StubHub was $575.00, for a seat in the upper end zone bleachers.
After the general allotment had sold out, student ticket sales opened at 9 p.m., giving students holding valid Stanford IDs the chance to purchase one ticket for themselves for $75 and one more ticket for a “student companion” for an additional $150. Although Stanford Athletics had initially announced that two companion tickets would be available for each student, that number was lowered to one just before student ticket sales opened. Both types of tickets rapidly sold out.
The student tickets went on sale during the 7-10 p.m. final exam slot and were gone shortly after the exam period ended.
Stanford and Michigan State will compete in the 100th Rose Bowl Game in Pasadena on Jan. 1.
This post was updated on Dec. 11 to include the percentage of tickets purchased by current season ticket holders and students as reported by Stanford Athletics and to include current secondary market ticket prices. It will continue to be updated.
Contact Do-Hyoung Park at dpark027 ‘at’ stanford.edu.