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Leaders mull basketball tickets

Matt Bramanti | Tuesday, February 24, 2004

The Council of Represen-tatives discussed basketball ticket distribution and a funding appeal for a Christian rock concert at their Monday meeting. The meeting also marked the first COR appearance by student body president-elect Adam Istvan and vice president-elect Karla Bell.

Istvan said he and Bell have begun their transition efforts to fill their staff.

“We’re beginning to look at our appointments for next year,” he said.

Bell said the pair has been in contact with officials in student government and the administration.

“Right now we’re just meeting with a lot of people,” she said.

Student body president Jeremy Lao said he met with assistant athletic director Jim Fraleigh – who oversees ticket distribution policies – to discuss potential improvements.

Chief of staff Pat Corker said changes in the policies are necessary.

“It’s ridiculous that there are kids who want to be there that can’t get tickets,” Corker said.

However nothing can currently be done to give more students tickets.

“For the short term, there is no way to increase the number of student tickets,” Lao said. “The only way to increase the number of tickets is to renovate the [Joyce Center.]”

Lao said such renovations are three to 10 years away. He also said Fraleigh’s office was concerned about the proportion of students who buy season tickets but fail to attend the games.

“If we’re complaining about student tickets, why aren’t more students showing up to the games?” Lao asked.

He said another potential change would be to reduce the number of season tickets allocated to students, allowing the athletic department to sell more individual game tickets.

Hall Presidents Council co-chair Sarah Keefer said she would support such a plan.

“It’ll reduce the number of people who buy season tickets but only go to a few games,” Keefer said.

The council’s adviser, Peggy Hnatusko, emphasized that plans are still being debated.

“[The proposals were] the result of a focus group where people were allowed to freely give their opinions,” Hnatusko said. “There’s nothing etched in stone.”

Istvan suggested creating an online message board, which would enable students to contact each other to exchange tickets.

“It could significantly reduce the no-show rate, which would give the athletic department enough confidence to increase our ticket allotment,” Istvan said.

Club Coordination Council president Seth O’Donnell praised the “Carolina Fever” fan club at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and suggested such a plan could work at Notre Dame. Under the UNC program, students who attend less popular sporting events earn points. Students who accumulate larger point totals are eligible to receive tickets in the Fever student section at the wildly-popular Tar Heel basketball games.

The council also considered an appeal for funds from Iron Sharpens Iron, a nondenominational Christian group. The group is planning a “Faith Rocks” concert to be held in late April.

The council maintains a collaboration fund, which allocates funding to organizations planning large events. The fund currently has a balance of more than $16,000.

Hnatusko said money has not yet been drawn from the fund this year, but she cautioned council members more appeals might be coming.

“No money has been spent to date,” Hnatusko said. “But typically, March and April are prime times for requests to come in.”

The council allocated $12,000 toward the “Faith Rocks” event.

Council members began to discuss the ongoing revisions to the Student Union Constitution, but quickly tabled the matter until next week. Lao directed the programming committee to meet this week, in order to create revisions to programming-related areas of the constitution.

In other COR news:

u Student body vice president Emily Chin said her office is launching a responsibility campaign, encouraging students to make prudent decisions about drinking. The campaign includes posters asking students not to be “that guy” or “that girl” who gets into trouble after drinking excessively.

“[The campaign] stemmed from the Board of Trustees report and our concerns as student leaders that students need to take responsibility for their actions and make wise choices,” Chin said.

u Junior class president Katie Barrett said her office will be distributing rice bowls today in LaFortune, DeBartolo and O’Shaughnessy Halls. The bowls will be used to “collect loose change during Lent to help feed poor families,” Barrett said.

u Senior class president Jazmin Garcia said her council will hold a “Rock the Vote” meeting Wednesday at 9:30 p.m. in the Center for Social Concerns. She encouraged each class council to send a representative to the meeting, which will focus on planning the voter registration drive.