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Questioning ticket distribution

Letter to the Editor | Thursday, September 4, 2003

As a self-proclaimed Notre Dame super fan, I considered it my duty to try and get tickets to the Michigan game. After striking out with friends that go to Michigan, I was pretty happy when I learned Tuesday night that there would be a ticket lottery Wednesday afternoon. I thought that this was short notice, but that I’d definitely be in line.

After reading the Wednesday edition of The Observer, I became somewhat confused. An ad said that the lottery would be in Reckers while the In Brief section on page 2‚ claimed it would be at North Dining Hall. I went to North after my 1:55 p.m. class and after waiting in line for 10 minutes, learned that it was only at Reckers.

So I got in line behind South Dining Hall right at 3 p.m. Now one of the new twists on this year’s ticket lottery was that a person could carry as many ID’s as they wanted; as opposed to every other event that I can remember at Notre Dame where a person could only carry two to six IDs.

So throughout this afternoon, dozens of people would just walk up to the line, give their ID to a friend, and leave despite the fact that hundreds of us had been waiting there for hours. Around 5 p.m. one of the workers came outside to notify us that the lottery would be shutting its doors at 6:07 p.m. due to NCAA rules stating that a ticket lottery can only last for 3 hours.

Since I was standing about 3 feet from the door into Recker’s, I figured that I could make it 3 feet in an hour. So the minutes slowly ticked away and it was suddenly 6 p.m. All of a sudden, we started hearing from people ahead of us in line that the doors wouldn’t be shutting at 6:07, the actual lottery would be shutting down. We figured this had to be a misunderstanding.

But sure enough, 6:07 rolled around and as I went to give my two IDs to the lady scanning them, she told me that the ticket lottery was over. I told her, “There has to be a mistake, just scan them, I’ve been waiting outside for three hours.”

Things started getting uglier from there, as about a hundred people that had made it inside began screaming at the workers, demanding an explanation. I was one of about 50 people that stayed until 6:30 p.m. to complain and figure out how we couldn’t even get entered into the lottery.

While I’m still extremely frustrated, life goes on. But there are just a few questions that remain. Why, despite the fact that the Michigan game will probably be our biggest road game of the year, was there only one person accepting and scanning IDs? For last year’s Florida State ticket lottery, there were three separate lines.

Why suddenly allow a student to give a stack of 60 IDs to their friend already in line when every Notre Dame event that I can remember only allowed a student to carry two IDs, six at the most? I could let some of these things slide if this was a “first come, first serve” ticket giveaway. Last week I missed out on Purdue tickets because I didn’t get to the line at 6 a.m. like my buddies did.

But a ticket lottery is supposed to give everybody an equal chance, not just reward the people who got there early with the IDs from every person in their dorm. I’m no expert at ticket distribution, but there has got to be a better way than this.

Justin FeeneyseniorKnott HallSept. 4