MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – The efforts of a University of Minnesota student have helped change the way the University sells season tickets.

This spring, the University began bundling ticket packages.

That meant if you wanted season tickets to Gophers hockey or basketball, you had to buy a season of football tickets too.

Students believe it was a way to help increase football attendance.

“I started getting a lot of negative feedback and I thought, this is a pretty significant issue I think,” Kyle Kroll said.

Kroll is a life-long Gopher hockey fan.

Last year, he paid $100 for season tickets.

But for the same seats this year, he was asked to pay $175, because the university was bundling football tickets as well.

“For me, that’s why I didn’t want to buy it. I kind of wanted to save the $75. I thought it was kind of outrageous in the first place that we would even have a policy like this,” Kroll said.

So he sent an email to the athletic department, but said he never heard back.

That’s when he wrote a resolution opposing the new system, saying he only wanted to watch Gophers on the ice, not on the gridiron.

The student senate passed his resolution unanimously.

“Students should be able to make their own decisions. Especially when the university tells us to live like students now so we don’t have to later and then forces us to spend more money,” student senate chair Valkyrie Jensen said.

But early Friday afternoon, citing pressure from a small number of students, and perhaps a letter from Governor Dayton, the U of M decided to drop its ticket bundling tactic.

Governor Dayton’s letter urged the “U” to discontinue the bundling practice.

He said the best way to increase football attendance was to continue “trouncing teams the way they trounced Michigan last weekend.”

“I was really amazed. Within 24 hours of passing this resolution now we have a policy change,” Kroll said.

For Kroll, a second year law student, it’s kind of like winning his first case.

He said he hopes it leads to the “U” paying more attention to student concerns.

“I hope going forward that will be the case. That students will actually receive a little more attention going forward when they have concerns,” Kroll said.

Of the students who bought the hockey-football package, 25 percent have not attended a football game this season.

The U of M will once again offer single-sport season tickets in the 2015-2016 school year, though bundle packages will still be offered as a way for fans to save money.

John Lauritsen

Comments