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Sports Business

Despite departure of stars, IU ticket demand still sky high

December 2, 2013
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It would stand to reason that demand for IU men’s basketball tickets would be down this year.

After all, Hoosier stars Victor Oladipo and Cody Zeller are long gone for the National Basketball Association and IU isn’t nearly the national power it was a year ago. Right now, there are more questions than answers about this year’s team.

But to quote former IU football coach and current ESPN college football analyst Lee Corso, “Not so fast, my friends.”

This is Indiana. And even if IU isn’t rated among the highest teams in the land, the Hoosiers’ ticket prices on the secondary market are.

The average price for IU’s tickets on the secondary market are $140 and the median price is $100, according to a recent study released by Chicago-based secondary ticket broker Vivid Seats. That’s the fifth-highest in the country--behind Kansas, Kentucky, Duke and Gonzaga.

IU is the only program in the top five in terms of ticket prices on the secondary market that is not ranked in the top 20 in either the AP or USA Today poll.

The demand and pricing for IU tickets is pretty impressive on two counts. First, IU’s Assembly Hall is fairly large by college standards, at 17,472 seats, and IU has more home games (18) than many schools. So the supply, by comparison, is pretty high.

Also, if you’re familiar with IU’s home venue, you know there are plenty of bad seats in the house, which would tend to drag down prices on the secondary market.

Yet, strong demand for IU hoops tickets continues to push up secondary prices , which are the best gauge—kind of like the stock market—of current supply and demand.

Kansas has the highest median price, at $265. Duke, because the best seats in the tiny (9,314-seat) Cameron Indoor Stadium are sky-high, has the highest average, at $442. IU ranks fifth in both categories.

There are only two other Big Ten schools within the top 20 in terms of (median) ticket prices on the secondary market, according to Vivid Seats. And college basketball fans might be surprised to find out who those schools are.

Minnesota comes in at 11th, with average prices at $107 and the median at $84. Iowa comes in at 18th, with an average price of $97 and a median of $74.

Michigan State, which is ranked No. 1 in the country in the latest AP poll, has an average ticket price on the secondary market of $78 and a median of $55, according to Vivid Seats. Ohio State, No. 8 in the AP poll, has an average price of $93 and a median of $63. Wisconsin, No. 12 in the AP poll, has an average price of $75 and median of $60. Michigan, No. 15, has an average secondary ticket price of $87 and a median of $55.

Memphis arguably has the most reasonably priced tickets on the secondary market. Despite ranking No. 11 in the most recent AP poll, Memphis has a median ticket price of $9. That’s cheaper than some high school games.

Duke’s ticket prices get a boost from its marquee match-up with Tobacco Road rival North Carolina. That match-up is stirring up the highest college basketball ticket prices on the secondary market, according to Vivid Seats, with a median price of $1,459.

Six of the top eight highest-priced college basketball game tickets on the secondary market are at Duke’s home venue, according to Vivid Seats, including match-ups against Syracuse, Maryland, North Carolina State, Florida State and Michigan.
 
 

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