Dear Tiger Fan,
Last Friday, the LSU Board of Supervisors approved a policy that allows the athletic department to increase the prices of some of our football and baseball tickets/seat donations, and to increase parking fees in some of the lots surrounding Tiger Stadium and Alex Box Stadium. Asking you to pay more to see the Tigers play is not something we like to do because we know that many of you make sacrifices and adjustments to your personal budgets in order to attend our events. We sincerely appreciate everything you do for our student-athletes and our entire University, and we hope you understand that this new policy is crucial to our future success.
I’d like to outline for you today the reasons the price increases will go into effect. First, please consider the following facts:
- The LSU athletic department is a self-sustaining unit of the University, and it is one of the few athletic departments in the nation that receives no state funding and no student fees.
- The policy approved by the Board on Friday marks our first increase in football prices since 2010, and the first increase in baseball prices since the New Alex Box Stadium opened in 2009.
- LSU recognizes that in order to operate a first-class athletic department that successfully competes with our peer institutions, our student-athletes must have access to the best facilities and the best academic resources.
- The LSU athletic department, acknowledging its obligation to fulfilling the educational mission of the University, has committed to transferring $7 million annually to academic departments.
The costs of running a major collegiate athletic department are on the rise. Revenue generated through ticket sales, parking fees and seat donations are dedicated to cover over 62% of our annual expenses, which are increasing at an accelerated pace. Our most critical expenses, the costs of scholarships for LSU student-athletes, have increased over 33% since the last time we implemented a Tradition Fund increase. The costs of fringe benefits have increased over 52% over the same time period. Without the new ticket/parking policy, we faced a possible $2 million deficit in our budget this year.
We’ve made a sincere commitment to enhancing your gameday experience at all of our venues, and these are some of the projects in which we are making significant investments:
- New parking lots to offset the loss of spaces caused by University construction
- New video boards and sound system in Tiger Stadium
- Renovations in Tiger Stadium such as waterproofing seating areas and repairing restrooms
- Implementation of effective traffic flow measures following football games
The adjustments to the ticket prices and parking fees will make completion of these projects possible.
UNCERTAINTY OF THE FUTURE
As you may know, the SEC will launch in August 2014 its own TV network that has the potential to generate significant revenue for each school in our conference. However, none of us know at this time exactly what kind of impact the SEC Network will make since it has not yet been sold to cable providers. We have made a $2 million investment in the network, and we are hopeful it will provide substantial benefits.
MAP IT OUT
I encourage you to go to the links below and take a look at the maps depicting the seating and parking areas affected by the new policy. Here are some notes to consider as you view the maps:
Tiger Stadium (Click Here for Map)
- No Football Tradition Fund increase is greater than $90
- 8,000 seats will experience NO increase at all
- The $50 seat donation has been eliminated on 3,000 upper-deck seats
- Most season tickets will increase from $400 to $425; however, the season ticket price will DECREASE for 5,000 seats
- About one-half of the paid parking spaces will NOT experience a Tradition Fund increase
- There will be NO change in student ticket prices
Alex Box Stadium (Click Here for Map)
- There is NO Tradition Fund increase on one-third of the seats
- The Tradition Fund has been eliminated on outfield seating
I hope this letter gives you some insight into the reasons for our new policy. Again, we understand that adjustments of this nature are never going to be popular, but I assure you they are necessary for our department to operate at the level of excellence that you, as devoted supporters of our program, have come to expect.
As always, we welcome your comments at firstname.lastname@example.org. Unfortunately we cannot answer every e-mail we receive, but please be assured they are all read.
Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics