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Football distribution system to change

Chris Khorey and Chris Hine | Wednesday, April 4, 2007

The chaotic fall tradition of multiple trips to Notre Dame Stadium to buy football ticket booklets is being replaced by an online-based ticket system the Ticket Office hopes is more convenient for students and employees alike.

Ticket Office Director Josh Berlo said Tuesday all students currently enrolled at Notre Dame or Saint Mary’s who plan to buy student ticket booklets for the fall 2007 football season will have the opportunity to register online starting Monday.

Under the previous system, students waited in line at Notre Dame Stadium twice each August – once to pick up a lottery number and again to get the actual ticket booklet.

Fisher Hall sophomore Mike Moriarty said he was excited for the change.

“That was kind of a hassle having to go back and forth and all that,” he said.

But other students, including Lyons Hall freshman Claire Connell, said the system was just fine how it was.

“I don’t think it’s that big of a deal,” Connell said. “I wouldn’t mind walking over to the

stadium to do it.”

In order to sit with friends, students will be able to create groups online, Berlo said. Each group will be seated together.

“[Students] can set up a group and they can have the system e-mail their friends the name of the group or they can just pass on the information for the group themselves,” Berlo said. “As long as they purchase their tickets and specify which group they’d like to be in by the deadline, they should be all set.”

Cavanaugh Hall sophomore Kaitlyn Clarke said the old system allowed students to have some say over where they sat, whereas the online distribution might be more randomized.

“[Under the old system,] you know if you go early to the stadium you know you’re going to get the best lottery numbers because even though they say they’re random, they’re not actually random,” she said. “They do give them in order. But, going online, maybe that will make it more random.”

Berlo said that while a deadline has not been set yet, students returning next fall who wish to buy tickets will have to do so some time this spring. Students will be notified of the deadline by e-mail, he said.

The ticket office has used online procedures for several years now, Berlo said, but waited to switch the student lottery over until they felt the process was as perfected as possible. This patience, he said, would ensure the new system will not experience the same problems that other paper-to-online transitions have encountered.

“We launched online ticketing a little over three years ago, but given how important student ticketing is, we wanted to make sure that our online system had been tested and that it was working well before we moved it online,” he said.

The Ticket Office spent the last few years researching online ticketing procedures at other schools before finally deciding on one that worked for Notre Dame, Berlo said.

“We tried to figure out the best way to emulate what they did at those institutions,” he said.

Ticket prices have gone up $3 per game this year. Ticket books will cost $217 for Notre Dame students and $291 for Saint Mary’s students.

Notre Dame will play seven home games next fall – against Georgia Tech Sept. 1, Michigan State Sept. 22, Boston College Oct. 13, Southern California Oct. 20, Navy Nov. 3, Air Force Nov. 10, and Duke Nov. 17.