Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Florida Atlantic University's first student-run news source.


Men’s Basketball: With high demand for tickets, FAU is trying to keep space for students

After their Final Four run, FAU has seen a huge demand for tickets. With this, FAU is trying to find space for students.
Jaden Wiston
The FAU student section getting hyped up during a basketball game last season.

FAU Athletics staff have decreased the number of student seats available at home games this season in response to ticket demand. Some seats that might have gone to students last year may go to non-students. 

After a historic men’s basketball season last year, FAU made some changes with the student seat. During FAU’s run to the Final Four, there was way more demand than expected. All of the hype surrounding the Owls has influenced changes to ticket sales that affects student seats. 

Student tickets are on a first come, first serve basis where you claim the ticket online but it doesn’t guarantee you a seat. FAU Athletics decreased the student section slightly from having seats in the stadium’s upper deck to both end zones, which is different from last year.

The average student seats last year was 859; with the increase of demand, that number was cut to a little over 700, according to Deputy Athletic Director/Brand & Communications Michael DeGeorge. 

“The students are 100% the priority in [Eleanor R.] Baldwin arena without a question. They drive the atmosphere and were a huge part of the success last year with the student section being so close to the court and that will not change without a doubt, said DeGeorge.” That makes up about 25% of the stadium, which is more than most places, according to DeGeorge and Deputy Athletic Director/Revenue Generation Michael Graffin. The UP cannot independently verify the claim.

With the students being the priority, FAU kept their prime court side seats even though the ticket sale increased.

“The court side sections were protected for the students,” said DeGeorge. “There were some additional tickets sold in the upper arena due to the success of the team last year; there is no way students will ever have to pay for a ticket. They are in prime seats in those areas. Going from Conference USA to the American Athletic Conference, we are now required to give the opposing team 240 tickets, which is a lot in such a small arena.”

Some students were outraged by the student section decreasing.

“It is annoying. It is already going to be harder to get tickets due to the Final Four run, but this will make it more difficult,” said senior multimedia journalism student Charles Maxwell. “Even though FAU protected a significant amount of seats for our students, losing that small percentage could pose a problem for some students who can’t get into the games.”

Zachary Stannard, a sophomore majoring in business management, agreed with Maxwell.

“I think reducing the amount of seats that go to FAU students is unfair, especially because it is more likely for students to go to games than other schools who would have to travel from other states,” Stannard said.  

Even though the men’s basketball success has increased the ticket sales there is still some discomfort with students and the decrease of seating due to the conference change as well.

“It’s new to our culture; our percentage of the arena is still higher than a lot of places around the country for students,” Graffin said. “It’s just how big our arena is that’s our biggest challenge. At the same time, it’s going to be an incredible experience for the students that are in there this season and we try to make it as fair as possible by sending out a claim link that we get from the registrar office.” 

The Owls will have their first home game Nov. 14 against Eastern Michigan University at 7 p.m. The game will stream on ESPN+.

Chris Smith is a Staff Writer for the University Press. Email [email protected], DM via Twitter @chris_smith_35 or Instagram @Chris_smith_4 for information regarding this story or others.

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