Hawkeye fans pay top dollar prices for football resale tickets

With Iowa football’s seven home games of the 2022 season sold out, resale tickets are expensive but worthwhile to Hawkeye fans.

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Jerod Ringwald

Iowa students enter Kinnick Stadium for a game for the first time in 651 days before a football game between No. 18 Iowa and No. 17 Indiana at Kinnick Stadium on Saturday, Sept. 4, 2021.

Colin Votzmeyer, News Reporter


Iowa football fans and University of Iowa students are paying steep prices to see the Hawkeyes at home.

The Hawkeye football Twitter account announced  on Aug. 3 that all seven home games for this upcoming season are sold out on Aug. 3, leaving many fans desperate for an opportunity to see the team play live in Kinnick Stadium this fall.

Buying resale is now one of the only ways to score a ticket, but the high prices are a surprise to many.

Jess Rickertsen, UI assistant athletic director for ticketing and premium seating, said tickets were last sold out in 2011. He said the attractive opponents of the Hawkeyes’ home schedule increased demand for tickets early, but the renovations and atmosphere of Kinnick Stadium also play big roles.

“The renovation of our north end zone has increased the atmosphere,” Rickertsen said. “It’s intimidating to visiting opponents.”

The university spent $89.9 million to renovate Kinnick Stadium in 2018, which included tearing down and rebuilding the north end zone. Renovations included a larger scoreboard, more types of premium seating, and rebuilding wider benches and aisles.

Rickertsen said catering to the fan experience through amenities like beer sales and updated bathrooms has added to the high demand for tickets.

“There are several things we have tried to improve over the years,” he said.

Many Hawkeye ticket resellers have taken advantage of the high demand.

Paula Neutzling, whose daughter is a UI senior in the nursing program, listed two tickets to the South Dakota State game on Facebook Marketplace for $160 total. Neutzling said she was not trying to make a lot of money. She chose her price based on Vivid Seats, a ticket resale website, where similar seats were going for even more.

Neutzling said it is disappointing how high the prices are, but that an in-person Iowa football experience is worth the money.

“When it’s a sold-out game especially, they’re a blast,” Neutzling said.

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Charlotte Stevens, a UI third-year student studying history and secondary education, missed out on student season tickets, so she has been shopping around online for resale tickets. Resellers have listed prices for as much as $275 for a single-game ticket, which she felt was unreasonable considering a student season ticket pass is only $150.

“Upselling it that much is a little bit ridiculous,” Stevens said.

Still, she was confident a high price was worth it for the Iowa football experience. On top of the game itself, she said she finds the crowd, school spirit, tailgating, and band a large part of what makes games so exciting.

“I think it’s a lot of fun, and I’m not a person who likes football to begin with,” Stevens said.

Logan Schmidt, a UI graduate student, posted in the Hawkeye Ticket Exchange group on Facebook Marketplace that he was willing to pay as much as $100 per ticket for the Iowa State game, but he said he found even that price was too low.

“I thought $100 would have been enough, but it wasn’t,” he said.

Nonetheless, Schmidt said the rivalry with Iowa State changes how much he is willing to pay for resale tickets.

“It was such a sweet experience that I can’t wait to experience it again this year,” he said.


 

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