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Tickets marked up online

Matt Bramanti | Friday, September 5, 2003

With the beginning of the Notre Dame football season just a day away, everyone wants tickets. Hundreds can be found on Internet auction sites like eBay – for a hefty price.

A search of eBay revealed sellers across the country offering dozens of tickets for every Irish home game this season. Some, for tomorrow’s opener against Washington State, are still up for grabs, fetching over $80 apiece.

The more high-profile games of the 2003 campaign – against Michigan, Florida State, and USC – are already commanding stratospheric prices, in some cases upwards of $500 each. These prices are expected to rise even further as the rivalry games draw nearer.

Demand for tickets, while always high, has spiked since the arrival of head coach Tyrone Willingham and Notre Dame’s “Return to Glory.” Fans from around the country are eager to pay hundreds of dollars for the chance to be part of the famed sea of green.

The apparent profiteering has not escaped the notice of Notre Dame policymakers. In May, the University revised its policy regarding the resale of tickets. Under the new rules, anyone caught selling a season ticket for more than face value will face the loss of ticket privileges for “a minimum of five years,” while selling single game tickets garners a two-year suspension. Repeat offenders risk the permanent revocation of their right to buy tickets to any Notre Dame sporting event.

A recent e-mail from Alumni Association executive director Chuck Lennon warned students against selling tickets. “If, for any reason, they turn up on eBay or are scalped, your ability to purchase tickets to any Notre Dame athletic event will be revoked,” the e-mail read.

Regardless, the laws of supply and demand still apply, and Notre Dame tickets remain the hottest commodity around.

The scarcity of tickets and the corresponding high prices have caused complaints among students.

Scalpers have driven prices out of students’ reach, said Knott Hall freshman Liam Zakko.

“They’re just too expensive,” he said.