Aug. 12, 2003
Columbia, Mo. - In July we released the seating plan for our new basketball arena, which is set to open on October 1, 2004.
As with anything we do in college athletics, the plan received a great deal of attention, both from the media and the public. Unfortunately, not all accounts of our plan were accurately reported. In an effort to explain things better, we have put together the following facts sheet about our seating plan.
While we've received numerous calls from fans and donors who have been confused by misinformation, we received over 150 Letters of Intent (LOI) to purchase more than 400 seats in the first 10 days after the plan was announced. Those LOI's are not due until January 31, 2004.
When you've read through this information, we hope you'll come to understand two things:
1. Over the long haul, the cost to be a season-ticket holder - in virtually every seating area - will be either cheaper, or remain the same, in the new arena as current prices in Hearnes;
2. More fans will be able to purchase affordable season tickets in the new arena than in Hearnes.
There are two assumptions that need to be made in coming to this understanding. Given the hard data we have from years of donations from thousands of donors, as well as the affinity those donors and all of our fans continue to have for the Tigers, we feel these are very safe assumptions:
1. Season-ticket purchases are for multiple seats per donor. Very rarely does one buy just a single season ticket - remember, we're talking about season tickets, not a single-game purchase. We do, of course, occasionally sell "singles" on a per-game basis, but this seating plan involves season tickets.
2. Donors who purchase season tickets do so for more than just a year or two. Tiger fans are very loyal. Our renewal rate for basketball season tickets is over 90 percent. We rarely have people purchase season tickets for just a year or two, and that piece of information is crucial to understanding that tickets will be cheaper in the new arena over the long haul - five years and longer.
A great deal of attention has been given in the media to the "Leadership Gift" of $25,000 or more that is required to purchase seats in Area 1 (courtside) or Area 2 (seating across from the team benches that would be analogous to "A" section in Hearnes). Unfortunately, most of it has been incorrect or misleading.
|Annual TSF gift per seat - ARENA||= $5,000|
|Multiply by four seats||= $20,000|
|Multiply by five years||= $100,000|
|Add Leadership Gift (one-time)||= $125,000|
Of course, $125,000 is a lot of money, but consider this: Even with the one-time campaign gift included, it's cheaper than what those donors are paying in the Hearnes Center right now:
|Annual TSF gift per seat - HEARNES||= $7,500|
|Multiply by four seats||= $30,000|
|Multiply by five years||= $150,000|
|Area(s)||Location(s)||Gift to Capital Campaign (1-time)||TSF Donation (annual)||Seats||Pct. of Arena|
|1 & 2||Courtside/Club||$25,000||$2-5,000||452||3.01|
|7 & 8||Mid/Upper Baseline, Upper Sideline||NONE||$125-250||4,200||28.00|
|9, SS, FSA||Upper Sideline, Student Section, Family Seating Area||NONE||NONE||6,000||40.00|
- As you know, there are concourses separating "A" section from "B" and "B" from "C" at the Hearnes Center. Those areas have been removed, and the seating condensed closer to the court, in the new arena. There will be just two seating bowls in the new arena, and 60 percent of the seating will be in the lower bowl.
If you have any questions, or are unsure about the details of the seating plan, please feel free to contact any of the following people:
|John Rasmussen||Chet Savage|
|Director, Tiger Scholarship Fund||Assistant Director, Tiger Scholarship Fund|
|(573) 882-5188||(573) 882-5179|
Thanks, as always, for taking the time to read this column. If you have any questions about this topic, or anything related to collegiate athletics at the University of Missouri, please feel free to contact me by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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