Ohio State vs Michigan: Economics of Tradition

As an Ohio State fan it pained me to even type out the “M” word for this blog post. Fans of this series call it “The Game”.  The importance of this series will break up families for a four hour time period, send friendships into fist a cuffs and even have extra police on hand at bars showing the game on tv.

The schools know how important this is as well and price it out accordingly. Both schools raise ticket prices for just this game. Millions try to make the trek each year just to be one of the 110,000 to stand in either stadium and pay premium prices for it.

Here are some examples:

Foxsports.com reported Ohio State will raise standard ticket prices starting in 2016 to $195 per ticket just for “The Game”. In 2014 the price for the same ticket was $150 according to BizJournals.com while the other five home games averaged $79. This is big jump and shows demand.

Even more telling in the same Fox Sports article, is the secondary ticket selling market known as “scalping”. Ticket buyers are paying scalpers up to $430 a ticket for this years game between the two schools.

Ticket prices are not the only financial in the mix. According MLive.com, when Michigan reaches maxed out capacity, it can produce even more revenue in and around the stadium.

On top of ticket sales, when maxed-out in ticket sales, Michigan can produce upwards of an additional quarter-million in gameday profits. According to documents obtained by MLive via a Freedom of Information Act request, last season’s home game versus Penn State — which garnered a season-high 99,548 sold tickets — generated an extra $233,279 in revenue. Concessions drew $160,653, while $61,955 was earned in parking and $10,671 was produced by game program sales. 





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