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Cal Football

Bears Introduce New Football Ticket Plan

June 27, 2019
4,930

Trying to bolster attendance in this era of uncertain starting times and kickoffs after dark, Cal has introduced an imaginative ticket plan, beginning with the 2019 season.

Called the “March to Victory Pass”, (MVP) it will cost either $149 or $299 per person depending on location for the six home games. The first category, called the basic pass, assures reserved seats in either the corner or the end zone of Memorial Stadium. The more expensive, or premium option, guarantees non-club seats between the goal lines. The price represents a savings of between $100 and $300 per ticket vs. those purchased in the traditional manner.

The ticket location will not be the same for all six games. Tickets will be sent to the buyers’ smart phones 48 hours prior to kickoff.

"We are always listening to our fans and what they are looking for in the ticket-buying process," said David Kao, Assistant AD for Ticket Sales, Service & Operations. "It is important that we provide this type of modern and creative ticket-buying experience as a convenient way for fans to attend our events.

“This ticketing experience is completely mobile and allows for last-minute ticket delivery, while different seat locations for every game provides fans different perspectives to enjoy the game.”

Cal is not inventing anything here. Kao said that Washington, Arizona and Kentucky have similar programs for football, and Ohio State and Oregon do it for basketball. Some pro teams are also utilizing ticket-buying methods along the same lines, among them the Kansas City Chiefs, Sacramento Kings, Brooklyn Nets, Carolina Panthers and Boston Celtics.

“I truly believe this is the future of ticket-buying,” Kao said. “As technology continues to advance, mobile ticketing along with pay-as-you-go subscriptions will be the future of sports ticketing. Data shows that most of our non-season ticket game goers buy last-minute, whether it’s through us or a secondary market like Stubhub. Therefore why not provide a product that meets the buying trend while guaranteeing our fans the best seats available without having to shop and compare prices online. 

Kao says this is probably just the beginning. “It’s only a matter of time before the ticketing experience converts primarily into a monthly ‘membership fee’ or ‘subscription’ based model and replaces the traditional season-ticket buying process,” he said. 

Attendance has been sliding at Memorial Stadium, a factor traceable to not only lack of success on the field but also the inconsistent starting times that sometimes are announced only six days in advance and night games, which are difficult for fans driving long distances to attend. 

Last year the Bears averaged just 42,871, which actually represents an increase over the 2017 figure of 36,451. The Bears, under first-year coach Justin Wilcox were coming off the horrendous Sonny Dykes era that season. But in the heyday of the Jeff Tedford era, the Bears drew an average of more than 60,000.

The Bears open the home season on Aug 31 against UC Davis. Other home games are against North Texas Sept. 14. Arizona State, Sept.27, Oregon State, Oct, 19, Washington State, Nov. 9 and USC, Nov. 16.

For more information or to become a 2019 MVP, visit CalBears.com/mvp or contact (800) GO-BEARS and press option 3.

Discussion from...

Bears Introduce New Football Ticket Plan

KenBurnski
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I like that he called the Sonny era "horrendous." Reminds me of Gordon Ramsey reviewing a plate of frozen gyro meat.
Sebastabear
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KenBurnski said:

I like that he called the Sonny era "horrendous." Reminds me of Gordon Ramsey reviewing a plate of frozen gyro meat.
Seems a bit harsh to define the entire era that way. Definitely had some highlights including seeing Jared Goff play for most of it. And I will just say I can't think of many Cal moments that could compete with that seven play goal line stand against Utah. I practically levitated on to the field.
KenBurnski
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Dbush goes hard. You can see the fear in Wilcox's eyes during post practice interviews.
Another Bear
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Good for the ATO for trying some creative thinking.

I was curious about the deal so I called the Cal ATO. The "MVP" plan does NOT get you priority for bowl games. Use to have season tickets in U, UU and T, and those prices aren't that much more than the top MVP price ($50 more for U). The trade off is you could get a much better seat on the top end but it seems the value is at the lower MVP price...if you can deal with the 48 hour notice.

I'm thinking it's time to get season tickets again...probably UU or T. If the offense shows up, it could be a very good season.

p.s. I didn't realize the ATO keeps track of old season tickets and you get priority points for how many season, which gives you bowl game priority, even if you stop season tickets. Basically you're ahead of the general public but behind season ticket holders.

Bobodeluxe
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Whoever wrote this piece is an ass.
Gunga la Gunga
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Wow. What a terrible home schedule. Let's say I buy an SC ticket and call it a year.
dbush518
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Staff
Sebastabear said:

KenBurnski said:

I like that he called the Sonny era "horrendous." Reminds me of Gordon Ramsey reviewing a plate of frozen gyro meat.
Seems a bit harsh to define the entire era that way. Definitely had some highlights including seeing Jared Goff play for most of it. And I will just say I can't think of many Cal moments that could compete with that seven play goal line stand against Utah. I practically levitated on to the field.
You are probably right, I might have overstated with "horrendous". Disappointing might have been a better choice of words. But the point is the attendance dropped dramatically from the height of Tedford's reign. I liked Sonny personally, but almost from day one he had one foot out the door.
dbush518
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Staff
KenBurnski said:

Dbush goes hard. You can see the fear in Wilcox's eyes during post practice interviews.
Thanks for noticing.
MugsVanSant
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The athletic director is responsible for the schedule. We need a director who can say "NO!" More of the same is no going to resurrect Cal football. If the athletic director was a teenage girl she would always be pregnant.
75bear
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Hasn't the ATO offered this type of plan for basketball the past few years?

I like to choose my seat location (section and row), so I'm not a huge fan of having the ATO choose for me (Row 2 - no thanks!).

But this plan may work for some people - so I'm glad they are offering it.
dbush518
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Staff
MugsVanSant said:

The athletic director is responsible for the schedule. We need a director who can say "NO!" More of the same is no going to resurrect Cal football. If the athletic director was a teenage girl she would always be pregnant.
I am sure Wilcox had some input as well. The only one that bothers me is North Texas. Everybody is entitled to one "free spot". In this case UC Davis. But that one should be played in the first or second week. No later. That's why it is awful when Alabama plays somebody like Chattanooga the week before Auburn.
Cal should be playing another Power 5 team rather than North Texas. Now maybe they had somebody lined up who pulled out and Cal had to find a replacement at the last minute. I don't know The conference foes are pre-ordained. In odd numbered years it is going to be USC, WSU, OSU and either an Arizona or Mountain school.
Sebastabear
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dbush518 said:

MugsVanSant said:

The athletic director is responsible for the schedule. We need a director who can say "NO!" More of the same is no going to resurrect Cal football. If the athletic director was a teenage girl she would always be pregnant.
I am sure Wilcox had some input as well. The only one that bothers me is North Texas. Everybody is entitled to one "free spot". In this case UC Davis. But that one should be played in the first or second week. No later. That's why it is awful when Alabama plays somebody like Chattanooga the week before Auburn.
Cal should be playing another Power 5 team rather than North Texas. Now maybe they had somebody lined up who pulled out and Cal had to find a replacement at the last minute. I don't know The conference foes are pre-ordained. In odd numbered years it is going to be USC, WSU, OSU and either an Arizona or Mountain school.
I believe there were some unfortunate circumstances that resulted in this year's schedule, but regardless I know Knowlton has it as one of his very highest priorities to improve our OOC games. He's been working on that since the day he set foot on campus. Look for some positive changes there soon.
71Bear
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dbush518 said:

Sebastabear said:

KenBurnski said:

I like that he called the Sonny era "horrendous." Reminds me of Gordon Ramsey reviewing a plate of frozen gyro meat.
Seems a bit harsh to define the entire era that way. Definitely had some highlights including seeing Jared Goff play for most of it. And I will just say I can't think of many Cal moments that could compete with that seven play goal line stand against Utah. I practically levitated on to the field.
You are probably right, I might have overstated with "horrendous". Disappointing might have been a better choice of words. But the point is the attendance dropped dramatically from the height of Tedford's reign. I liked Sonny personally, but almost from day one he had one foot out the door.
Quite frankly, you got it right the first time - the Dykes era was "horrendous". Losing wasn't the issue as much as the games were absolutely unwatchable. The roll call of worst ever Cal coaches is short but it certainly includes Dykes as a solid #2 behind Gilby.
71Bear
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Sebastabear said:

dbush518 said:

MugsVanSant said:

The athletic director is responsible for the schedule. We need a director who can say "NO!" More of the same is no going to resurrect Cal football. If the athletic director was a teenage girl she would always be pregnant.
I am sure Wilcox had some input as well. The only one that bothers me is North Texas. Everybody is entitled to one "free spot". In this case UC Davis. But that one should be played in the first or second week. No later. That's why it is awful when Alabama plays somebody like Chattanooga the week before Auburn.
Cal should be playing another Power 5 team rather than North Texas. Now maybe they had somebody lined up who pulled out and Cal had to find a replacement at the last minute. I don't know The conference foes are pre-ordained. In odd numbered years it is going to be USC, WSU, OSU and either an Arizona or Mountain school.
I believe there were some unfortunate circumstances that resulted in this year's schedule, but regardless I know Knowlton has it as one of his very highest priorities to improve our OOC games. He's been working on that since the day he set foot on campus. Look for some positive changes there soon.
This only game on this year's schedule that is an outlier is North Tx. The rest of the games are standard fare. An FCS game, a trip to a P5 venue and the odd year slate of conference games.

Knowlton has his work cut out for him re: future OOC games. Per the following, he won't have any real influence until 2026.

2020 @UNLV, Cal Poly, TCU
2021 Nevada, @TCU, Sac St.
2022 Davis, @ No. TX, UNLV
2023 Auburn @ San Jose St., TBD
2024 Davis @Auburn, San Diego St.
2025 UNLV, @ San Diego St., TBD
2026 @UNLV, TBD, TBD
2027 none scheduled yet

Source: FB Schedules
bearfan93
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i like our OOC schedule this year. one tune up game; one tougher game @ Ole Miss and one in the middle.

I know its North Texas, but they did go 9-4 last year. I don't know much about them but don't think they're a pushover.
71Bear
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bearfan93 said:

i like our OOC schedule this year. one tune up game; one tougher game @ Ole Miss and one in the middle.

I know its North Texas, but they did go 9-4 last year. I don't know much about them but don't think they're a pushover.
They are definitely not a pushover. They have a very good QB and a solid coach. They are going to be a real test for Cal.
GivemTheAxe
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bearfan93 said:

i like our OOC schedule this year. one tune up game; one tougher game @ Ole Miss and one in the middle.

I know its North Texas, but they did go 9-4 last year. I don't know much about them but don't think they're a pushover.

Cal cannot consider any team as a pushover until we have established a consistent effective offense. And even then considering any team a pushover could prove reckless
GivemTheAxe
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71Bear said:

Sebastabear said:

dbush518 said:

MugsVanSant said:

The athletic director is responsible for the schedule. We need a director who can say "NO!" More of the same is no going to resurrect Cal football. If the athletic director was a teenage girl she would always be pregnant.
I am sure Wilcox had some input as well. The only one that bothers me is North Texas. Everybody is entitled to one "free spot". In this case UC Davis. But that one should be played in the first or second week. No later. That's why it is awful when Alabama plays somebody like Chattanooga the week before Auburn.
Cal should be playing another Power 5 team rather than North Texas. Now maybe they had somebody lined up who pulled out and Cal had to find a replacement at the last minute. I don't know The conference foes are pre-ordained. In odd numbered years it is going to be USC, WSU, OSU and either an Arizona or Mountain school.
I believe there were some unfortunate circumstances that resulted in this year's schedule, but regardless I know Knowlton has it as one of his very highest priorities to improve our OOC games. He's been working on that since the day he set foot on campus. Look for some positive changes there soon.
This only game on this year's schedule that is an outlier is North Tx. The rest of the games are standard fare. An FCS game, a trip to a P5 venue and the odd year slate of conference games.

Knowlton has his work cut out for him re: future OOC games. Per the following, he won't have any real influence until 2026.

2020 @UNLV, Cal Poly, TCU
2021 Nevada, @TCU, Sac St.
2022 Davis, @ No. TX, UNLV
2023 Auburn @ San Jose St., TBD
2024 Davis @Auburn, San Diego St.
2025 UNLV, @ San Diego St., TBD
2026 @UNLV, TBD, TBD
2027 none scheduled yet

Source: FB Schedules

Glad to see San Jose State Bancorp on the schedule. I have heard all the reasons NOT to play SJS. But I remember some very good Cal v. SJS games. And from the perspective of tradition we should not be afraid of taking on SJS.
Sebastabear
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71Bear said:

Sebastabear said:

dbush518 said:

MugsVanSant said:

The athletic director is responsible for the schedule. We need a director who can say "NO!" More of the same is no going to resurrect Cal football. If the athletic director was a teenage girl she would always be pregnant.
I am sure Wilcox had some input as well. The only one that bothers me is North Texas. Everybody is entitled to one "free spot". In this case UC Davis. But that one should be played in the first or second week. No later. That's why it is awful when Alabama plays somebody like Chattanooga the week before Auburn.
Cal should be playing another Power 5 team rather than North Texas. Now maybe they had somebody lined up who pulled out and Cal had to find a replacement at the last minute. I don't know The conference foes are pre-ordained. In odd numbered years it is going to be USC, WSU, OSU and either an Arizona or Mountain school.
I believe there were some unfortunate circumstances that resulted in this year's schedule, but regardless I know Knowlton has it as one of his very highest priorities to improve our OOC games. He's been working on that since the day he set foot on campus. Look for some positive changes there soon.
This only game on this year's schedule that is an outlier is North Tx. The rest of the games are standard fare. An FCS game, a trip to a P5 venue and the odd year slate of conference games.

Knowlton has his work cut out for him re: future OOC games. Per the following, he won't have any real influence until 2026.

2020 @UNLV, Cal Poly, TCU
2021 Nevada, @TCU, Sac St.
2022 Davis, @ No. TX, UNLV
2023 Auburn @ San Jose St., TBD
2024 Davis @Auburn, San Diego St.
2025 UNLV, @ San Diego St., TBD
2026 @UNLV, TBD, TBD
2027 none scheduled yet

Source: FB Schedules
You are assuming none of these can be changed. Where there's a will there's a way. But it takes a lot of calls . . .
71Bear
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Sebastabear said:

71Bear said:

Sebastabear said:

dbush518 said:

MugsVanSant said:

The athletic director is responsible for the schedule. We need a director who can say "NO!" More of the same is no going to resurrect Cal football. If the athletic director was a teenage girl she would always be pregnant.
I am sure Wilcox had some input as well. The only one that bothers me is North Texas. Everybody is entitled to one "free spot". In this case UC Davis. But that one should be played in the first or second week. No later. That's why it is awful when Alabama plays somebody like Chattanooga the week before Auburn.
Cal should be playing another Power 5 team rather than North Texas. Now maybe they had somebody lined up who pulled out and Cal had to find a replacement at the last minute. I don't know The conference foes are pre-ordained. In odd numbered years it is going to be USC, WSU, OSU and either an Arizona or Mountain school.
I believe there were some unfortunate circumstances that resulted in this year's schedule, but regardless I know Knowlton has it as one of his very highest priorities to improve our OOC games. He's been working on that since the day he set foot on campus. Look for some positive changes there soon.
This only game on this year's schedule that is an outlier is North Tx. The rest of the games are standard fare. An FCS game, a trip to a P5 venue and the odd year slate of conference games.

Knowlton has his work cut out for him re: future OOC games. Per the following, he won't have any real influence until 2026.

2020 @UNLV, Cal Poly, TCU
2021 Nevada, @TCU, Sac St.
2022 Davis, @ No. TX, UNLV
2023 Auburn @ San Jose St., TBD
2024 Davis @Auburn, San Diego St.
2025 UNLV, @ San Diego St., TBD
2026 @UNLV, TBD, TBD
2027 none scheduled yet

Source: FB Schedules
You are assuming none of these can be changed. Where there's a will there's a way. But it takes a lot of calls . . .
As long as Cal is willing to break contracts and pay penalties, yes, any or all of them could change. IMO, the one that sticks out and begs for a change is the San Jose game.
CalBearPete
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71Bear said:

Sebastabear said:

dbush518 said:

MugsVanSant said:

The athletic director is responsible for the schedule. We need a director who can say "NO!" More of the same is no going to resurrect Cal football. If the athletic director was a teenage girl she would always be pregnant.
I am sure Wilcox had some input as well. The only one that bothers me is North Texas. Everybody is entitled to one "free spot". In this case UC Davis. But that one should be played in the first or second week. No later. That's why it is awful when Alabama plays somebody like Chattanooga the week before Auburn.
Cal should be playing another Power 5 team rather than North Texas. Now maybe they had somebody lined up who pulled out and Cal had to find a replacement at the last minute. I don't know The conference foes are pre-ordained. In odd numbered years it is going to be USC, WSU, OSU and either an Arizona or Mountain school.
I believe there were some unfortunate circumstances that resulted in this year's schedule, but regardless I know Knowlton has it as one of his very highest priorities to improve our OOC games. He's been working on that since the day he set foot on campus. Look for some positive changes there soon.
This only game on this year's schedule that is an outlier is North Tx. The rest of the games are standard fare. An FCS game, a trip to a P5 venue and the odd year slate of conference games.

Knowlton has his work cut out for him re: future OOC games. Per the following, he won't have any real influence until 2026.

2020 @UNLV, Cal Poly, TCU
2021 Nevada, @TCU, Sac St.
2022 Davis, @ No. TX, UNLV
2023 Auburn @ San Jose St., TBD
2024 Davis @Auburn, San Diego St.
2025 UNLV, @ San Diego St., TBD
2026 @UNLV, TBD, TBD
2027 none scheduled yet

Source: FB Schedules
I really like the 2020 schedule; in addition to the interesting home schedule I believe that Cal opens the season at the brand new Raiders' Las Vegas stadium. That's worth a road trip. And I think/hope that the 2020 Bears will be poised for taking a next step up.
dbush518
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Staff
The problem with a team like North Texas is that you beat 'em, everybody says so what. You lose to them and it looks like a bad loss
TheSouseFamily
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Not gonna lie. The North Texas game scares me.
71Bear
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If you lose, generally, the first comment is...

"What were you thinking when you put them on the schedule".
ColoradoBear
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71Bear said:

Sebastabear said:

71Bear said:

Sebastabear said:

dbush518 said:

MugsVanSant said:

The athletic director is responsible for the schedule. We need a director who can say "NO!" More of the same is no going to resurrect Cal football. If the athletic director was a teenage girl she would always be pregnant.
I am sure Wilcox had some input as well. The only one that bothers me is North Texas. Everybody is entitled to one "free spot". In this case UC Davis. But that one should be played in the first or second week. No later. That's why it is awful when Alabama plays somebody like Chattanooga the week before Auburn.
Cal should be playing another Power 5 team rather than North Texas. Now maybe they had somebody lined up who pulled out and Cal had to find a replacement at the last minute. I don't know The conference foes are pre-ordained. In odd numbered years it is going to be USC, WSU, OSU and either an Arizona or Mountain school.
I believe there were some unfortunate circumstances that resulted in this year's schedule, but regardless I know Knowlton has it as one of his very highest priorities to improve our OOC games. He's been working on that since the day he set foot on campus. Look for some positive changes there soon.
This only game on this year's schedule that is an outlier is North Tx. The rest of the games are standard fare. An FCS game, a trip to a P5 venue and the odd year slate of conference games.

Knowlton has his work cut out for him re: future OOC games. Per the following, he won't have any real influence until 2026.

2020 @UNLV, Cal Poly, TCU
2021 Nevada, @TCU, Sac St.
2022 Davis, @ No. TX, UNLV
2023 Auburn @ San Jose St., TBD
2024 Davis @Auburn, San Diego St.
2025 UNLV, @ San Diego St., TBD
2026 @UNLV, TBD, TBD
2027 none scheduled yet

Source: FB Schedules
You are assuming none of these can be changed. Where there's a will there's a way. But it takes a lot of calls . . .
As long as Cal is willing to break contracts and pay penalties, yes, any or all of them could change. IMO, the one that sticks out and begs for a change is the San Jose game.
I'm surprised if that @SJSU game is still on for 2023. Looks like SJSU @ Cal was originally scheduled for 9/14/2019, and was replaced by North Texas. No way are we playing a G5 road game without a home game first.

On the bigger picture of odd/even year scheduling, the only consistent way (that is in Cal's control, and not dictated by the P12) to get a decent odd year schedule is to get an upper half of the P5 opponent to play at Cal in odd years, in exchange for for an even year road game. But there aren't too many teams that fit that bill when you consider willingness to travel, many P5 teams playing only one other P5 team OOC, and the fact that other schools in conferences that have 9 game schedules (BT, B12, ACC when ND is included) also will have a 4 vs 5 alternating year home game schedule.

The TCU series is an example of how NOT to balance the schedule. We play the road game in '21 and the home game in '22. For TCU, it's great - they also have 4 home conference games in odd years, so this fixes their imbalance. The bigger question is whether TCU is a big enough name to create an imbalance schedule for... and consider whether the option of playing a not-so-notable P5 school at home in an odd year (say a purdue, minnesota or rutgers type team) in that odd year would be better.
Fyght4Cal
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Because so many of you have been season ticket holders for a while, I just want to note that March To Victory Pass (MTVP) concept is not completely new at Cal, but more of an update to the BearTerritory Pass (BTP). These, too, were delivered 48 hours in advance.

Three years ago, @CalRho and I used the BTP. We bought them in a flash sale for $99. We sat in various sections for each home game. It actually helped us choose our season ticket locations for the past two seasons.

The new part is the two-tiered pricing. For $99 ($149 regularly) we sat in the both end zones, Section J, and Section EE, IIRC. Now for $149, MTVP holders will be restricted to the end zones. The $299 upgrade guarantees sideline seating, perhaps with a benchback.

Will this two-tiered approach work? Season tickets (ST) with reserved seating in the end zone are $250 (<65 yo). So, there's $100 difference to know your seating in advance. Most games you can sort almost anywhere you want in the end zone. Why pay the extra &100? Just to sit lower/higher at the USC game?

Corner sideline ST are $350. That's a small difference ($50) between ST and MTVP. At that price point, it seems better to buy corner sideline ST, b/c that's most likely where the MTVP seats will be.

East sideline reserved are $450 ($350 ticket plus $100 donation). That's a $150 increase over the MTVP. Is that where the value of the MTVP lay?

This is a downgrade of the lower-tiered pass. But perhaps BTP holders indicated a willingness to pay more for guaranteed sideline and/or benchback seats. I hope it's not just a marketing gimmick, unsupported by data. Let's see if it works.

The other mini plan, the Blue Plan, also appears to be a downgrade. IIRC, previous mini plans included 3 games. This year it's two games, USC +1. Actually, this seems better, because when the SC alums snap them up they will only be able to screw-up the attendance at one other game, instead of two.

TL: dr This ain't new.
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LunchTime
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Sebastabear said:

KenBurnski said:

I like that he called the Sonny era "horrendous." Reminds me of Gordon Ramsey reviewing a plate of frozen gyro meat.
Seems a bit harsh to define the entire era that way. Definitely had some highlights including seeing Jared Goff play for most of it. And I will just say I can't think of many Cal moments that could compete with that seven play goal line stand against Utah. I practically levitated on to the field.
holmoe had some awesome talent come through also...

Still terrible.
rkt88edmo
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75bear said:

Hasn't the ATO offered this type of plan for basketball the past few years?

I like to choose my seat location (section and row), so I'm not a huge fan of having the ATO choose for me (Row 2 - no thanks!).

But this plan may work for some people - so I'm glad they are offering it.
I used the basketball plan for a Cuonzo season, it was fantastic. Most games were under attended so we sat in the chairbacks. But there are a LOT more bb games and the schedule gets locked a lot earlier. I'm glad they are using this type of plan. The As have done it as well.
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