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Ticket lotto excludes Saint Mary’s

Anneliese Woolford | Friday, September 19, 2003

Saint Mary’s and Holy Cross students have traditionally been included in numerous activities and events held at Notre Dame and, as a whole, are appreciative of that fact. When an announcement was made that Thursday’s Purdue football ticket lottery was restricted solely to Notre Dame students, those at the other colleges were left speculating why.While several Saint Mary’s and Holy Cross students claim to have participated in past football lotteries, the tickets have always been reserved for students at Notre Dame, said Charlie Ebersol, Student Union Board president.”We’ve always advertised only to Notre Dame students,” he said. “We never accepted Saint Mary’s or Holy Cross students into the lottery. The machine is set up only to receive Notre Dame cards.”However, Ebersol admits he did see at least one Saint Mary’s student at the Michigan lottery held earlier this year. He speculates that the student somehow used a Notre Dame identification card to permit her eligibility.Unfortunately, there remains uncertainty as to who makes the final specification of those qualified for each of the lotteries. In a statement published Thursday, Ebersol said that the ticket office, which provides the tickets for the lottery, specifies who is eligible. “I can’t comment on Charlie [Ebersol]’s statement,” said Josh Berlo, director of ticketing. “We sell the tickets to [SUB] and they administer the lottery numbers.”Ebersol now claims his understanding is that specifications are a mutual decision made between SUB and the ticket office. He said that SUB is commissioned by the athletic department ticket office to facilitate the lotteries in a fair and equal manner.”When the lottery was originally put together, it was given to SUB and intended strictly for Notre Dame students,” he said. “My responsibility and the responsibility of SUB is to program events and provide tickets for our student body.”While he stands by his position and that of SUB, Ebersol does recognize the role that the other two colleges play as members of the Notre Dame community.”While Saint Mary’s and Holy Cross students are part of the Notre Dame family, they’re not the actual student body. Thus, the hard spent money of the Notre Dame student body for programming through SUB is not going to be spent on Saint Mary’s and Holy Cross.”Emily Spore, a senior at Saint Mary’s, has participated in past ticket lotteries and was preparing to attend Thursday until she was notified of the exclusion.”My friends and I were definitely planning on going to the Purdue game, but the only way to get tickets here was through the lottery,” she said. “We’ll probably give up hope. It won’t be worth it for us to drive to Purdue without tickets.”Spore feels that the lottery should permit all students an equal opportunity to purchase tickets to away games. She fails to understand why she and other Saint Mary’s students could be involved in the past, but not now.”There just doesn’t seem to be a very good reason for it aside from the increased chance for more Notre Dame students to get tickets,” she said.According to Ebersol, that is the exact reason why.”The demand clearly outweighs the supply,” he said. “If we were to open this up to that many more students, the odds of Notre Dame students receiving tickets would be greatly reduced.”