By Mike Baldwin
The announcement on Tuesday that OSU will require fans to purchase a season ticket if they want to attend the Bedlam game on Nov. 29 will certainly cause a stir. OU fans will be ticked off. Even some OSU fans aren’t keen on the idea. But many OSU fans embrace the fact Sooner fans will have to pay a lot of money if they want to be at Boone Pickens Stadium Thanksgiving weekend.
I think it’s a stroke of genuis. As Iowa State proved last year, which did something similar for its home game with Iowa, it should boost OSU’s season ticket sales. I’ll be stunned if OSU doesn’t sell at least 40,000 season tickets for the first time in school history. They might even sell 45,000.
The plan is to get more OSU fans on board. If fans look at it closely they’re basically getting season tickets for half price based on the $60 (non conference) and $85 (conference) price tag for individual games. Tuned in fans could purchase season tickets, sell a few tickets to two or three games they don’t want to attend and get the Bedlam game and three others at a greatly reduced price.
It wouldn’t be surprising to see some OU fans take that same strategy. Fans who purchase $294 end zone season tickets or $419 season tickets will seem like a bargain by the time Bedlam becomes a very hot ticket in November.
OSU’s unusual season ticket strategy should produce a lot more overall revenue and increase the season ticket fan base. OSU officials could even use the Bedlam game as an opportunity to create some good P.R. Regardless how many tickets are left, if Mike Holder, Boone Pickens or another big-money donor purchased whatever Bedlam tickets were left over in early November — even if it’s 15,000 tickets — if someone purchased those tickets a week or two before Bedlam and donated the tickets to military veterans, kids’ clubs or other charity groups, the stadium would be full and OSU has gained some P.R. kudos as well.