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Scalpers at A&M receive warning
Fair or not, potentially awful consequences if not heeded.
REST OF THE STORY
By Brent Zwerneman
September 12, 2013
COLLEGE STATION — With a website billing Saturday's Texas A&M-Alabama clash as the “most expensive regular season college football game ever,” Aggies are being put on notice not to sell their student tickets for quick riches.
Forbes.com reports that tickets overall — not just student seats — are averaging $763 on the secondary market.
That has led to a pre-emptive move by A&M.
“Student sports options are heavily subsidized by season ticket holders,” an email from the athletic department to students declared. “Former students and Aggie fans long have been committed to maintaining the quality and size of the student allotment at Kyle Field. In return, Texas A&M students, the 12th Man, are expected to honor this commitment by not reselling for profit their student tickets.”
For a year now, ever since quarterback Johnny Manziel led the Aggies to an upset victory over the defending national champions in Alabama, the rematch between the two SEC schools has been much anticipated. Since that contest, Alabama went on to win another championship and Manziel won the Heisman Trophy as college football's best player.
On Saturday, Alabama comes to Kyle Field as the nation's top-ranked team. A&M is ranked No. 6.
The email from the athletic department warns that “students found to be in violation of this policy will be penalized, to include cancellation of sports options, cancellation of tickets already pulled and the loss of sports privileges for the duration of their Texas A&M career.”
For freshmen, “duration of their A&M career” is a long time for such a capitalistic indiscretion, and the topic caught fire this week on Twitter and A&M fan-based websites.
“The rules are clear: You can't resell your student tickets for more than face value,” a poster on the popular message board TexAgs.com intoned. “If you don't like the rules, don't buy a sports pass. It really is that easy. If you 'need' the money, you should probably be working the concessions or ticket booth, or working as an usher. ...”
A&M Senior Associate Athletic Director Jason Cook said as of Wednesday night, more than 250 students had been contacted by the university regarding their listings for the tickets on Internet sites such as Facebook and StubHub, and about 1,000 such tickets were in question in the 82,589-seat stadium.
“The reason for proceeding aggressively on this is twofold,” said Cook, who added that most of the students immediately removed their postings when contacted. “We want Aggies in the stands, not people wearing crimson. Secondly, our students are heavily subsidized by our season ticket holders and donors. That's their sacrifice to ensure that Kyle Field remains the 'Home of the 12th Man,' and our students receive prime seating in the stadium.”