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Basketball ticket sales, crowds strong

Emma Driscoll | Monday, January 29, 2007

Last year’s change to the Notre Dame’s men’s basketball student ticketing policy may have helped keep this year’s ticket sales strong and the crowd enthusiastic, said Director of Ticket Operations Josh Berlo.

“I would say our ticket sales are pretty similar compared to the last couple years,” Berlo said on Jan. 22, noting that while sales haven’t signficantly increased, crowd energy has.

The policy for student tickets was altered last year to allow students to “share booklets,” Berlo said, a change that has boosted consistent student attendance.

This change was made “due to the fact that we had sold out our student tickets a couple years in a row and found that there were more students who wanted to attend,” Berlo said.

Due to the number of games on the men’s basketball schedule, Berlo said, students were not always able to attend every game. The ticket policy change was made to “make it so as many students as possible could attend [the games],” he said.

The basketball team currently has a 17-game winning streak at home, something Berlo said probably also encourages attendance – which, in turn, helps the team.

“The crowds this year have been great. They’ve been into the game, they’ve made a lot of noise, and they are really helping our home court advantage,” Berlo said.

Sophomore Andrew Monahan, who purchased a student ticket booklet at the beginning of the season, has attended every home game. He described the typical crowd as “definitely enthusiastic because most of the people who go are the die-hard fans and they are definitely into the games.”

However, Monahan said he has observed a change in attendance throughout this season as the team has increased its winning record.

“I think at the beginning of the year it [attendance] was a lot like last year because people didn’t have as big of expectations about the team,” he said.

Sophomore John Avila said he agrees that attendance has shifted throughout the season.

“It seems like attendance has increased with the success of the team,” he said, noting that the games against conference opponents have been well attended.

For freshman Sam Vos, while general crowd attendance appears to vary depending on the opponent, the student section seems consistently strong – something he attributed to students who pass tickets on to their friends when they can’t attend.

“The student section has been fun to be in,” he said. “[The students] have been pretty rowdy and supportive.”

Tickets are currently sold out for the upcoming game against Marquette. Berlo said on Jan. 22 his office is “sold out of student books at this point.”