The first time I saw it, I truly thought it was a spoof. It was a video on YouTube.com featuring the Seminoles (including Coach Bowden, Jimbo Fisher, Chuck Amato and a host of FSU players) in what appears to be a television commercial urging fans to purchase football season tickets.
Have the “Mighty Noles” fallen so far that they’re now resorting to infomercials to sell season tickets? It looks like semi-fans aren’t sold on the so called “Coaching Dream Team” just yet.
At first, I thought that infomercial was a dead ringer for an NCAA violation because FSU’s athletes were being used to endorse the sale of season tickets. Then again the NCAA has been all about money these days, so it conveniently looks the other way when its own athletes promote its own products in the pursuit of the almighty dollar.
What really had me wondering if the infomercial was a spoof was the fact that the tickets were being promoted as on sale for just $215 for the entire season. Disbelievingly, I just had to check the official website for the Seminoles and much to my amusement, there it was right in front of my eyes. Season tickets for $215!
Heck, it costs some UF alumni that much alone in fuel to drive their glorious Orange and Blue RVs from Atlanta for just one home game! Yet, there’s no commercials in the state of Florida by the Gators trying to unload season tickets. As a matter of fact, I cannot remember this as ever happening.
On the official site for Florida athletics, the season ticket announcement reads like this:
“Due to the high demand for season football tickets, very few season tickets become available each year for purchase. Therefore, only new orders will be accepted from persons wishing to join Gator Boosters at the Bull Gator or Scholarship Club member levels.
For those wishing to do so. The Bull Gator tickets are limited to eight tickets at a minimum donation of $12,000 and the Scholarship Club is limited to four tickets for a minimum of $3900.”
The Gators are sold out again, as they have been for over 20 years. You would expect it from a team defending a national championship, but the Gators had their lean years on the field as well and still managed to sell all of their season tickets.
The Nole faithful are some of the most boisterous, but it seems they aren’t ready to put their money where their mouth is this season. Over and over we have heard about the “coaching staff of the century” or Bowden’s “coaching dream team”. But it looks like the fans are not ready to go “all-in” just yet. They may have good reason to wait.
Offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher was the number one target for the Noles in the off-season. Fisher left LSU as the offensive coordinator and an offense that ranked first in the SEC. Still, with three first round picks in the 2007 NFL Draft, including the top overall pick at quarterback, the Tigers could muster no more than 318 yards in losses to Florida and Auburn and an overtime victory with Ole Miss.
The Seminoles struggled on offense last year to the tune of a 7-6 overall record. Inconsistency from the quarterback position as well as an almost total lack of a running game caused the Nole faithful to wallow in disgust as the more losses piled on since Bobby Bowden’s first season.
In the Nole’s annual spring game, the offense still looked habitually ineffective. There were as many interceptions (4) as touchdowns from the quarterbacks through the air. And the running game accounted for 145 yards on 55 rushes a mere 2.6 yards per carry—something RB coach Dexter Carter was brought in to allegedly improve. After that hapless offensive display, Coach Fisher was heard muttering the words “disgusted” and “ridiculous” in a post-exhibition interview on the official website.
So, it is understandable why the few thousand in attendance may be a bit skeptical about the 2007 season. Is the Seminole coaching dream team going to be enough to win back the faithful? Maybe so, but according to the time tested theory of supply and demand, the Seminole fans have definitely voted with their wallets by refusing to open them up for their own beloved football team.
I have a better marketing suggestion for the Seminoles: Open up an eBay store and sell the tickets there for $215 or best offer!