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Could Kentucky benefit from changing student ticket method?


Student attendance at the Kentucky football games has always been a struggle. It has been so poor in the past that during the renovations of Commonwealth Stadium, the student section has been moved and the number of seats have decreased.

After spending my weekend in Columbia with a friend who attends the University of South Carolina, I learned about their student ticket method. Their method is one that Kentucky could take note of in the future to increase the student attendance at the football games.

South Carolina uses a loyalty point system. What that means is that students receive points by attending football, basketball and baseball games throughout the year. All athletic tickets are put onto your CarolinaCard (a.k.a student ID) in order to keep track of points. So at a football, basketball and baseball game your card is swiped and your points are recorded on your student account.

Point System Information

  • Ten percent of the points you earned in a school year will be carried over to the next school year.
  • All non-conference football and basketball games are worth two points
  • All Southeastern conference football and basketball games and all games for other sports are one point.
  • Each sport will host at least one double rewards game for students.
  • Based on your grade classification, you earn a certain amount of points at the start of each school year.Freshmen: 3 points
    Sophomore: 4 points
    Junior/Graduate student: 6 points
    Senior: 8 points

Students have two days to request a football ticket of each home game on days indicated by the USC Ticket Office. The students are then put in order (highest to lowest) based on their loyalty points. The first 9200 students are awarded lower decks tickets. Emails are sent to students who can claim one of those 9200 tickets and to the students who did not receive a ticket. If any of the lower deck tickets are not claimed, the remaining will be available online on a first-come, first-served basis.

The most important part of South Carolina’s student ticket method is that students are penalized if they have a ticket and do not enter the game. The student loses their ability to attend any of the remaining home games. This rule is what makes South Carolina games so popular for their students and so well attended, which is a very smart tactic by the university.

This method could be very beneficial in increasing student attendance at sporting events overall, but especially at football games. I believe that if Kentucky were to use this method, they would need to add more teams to the list other than football, basketball and baseball; like soccer and volleyball.

So Big Blue Nation, what do you think?

Article written by Kindsey Bernhard

Lover of dogs, sports and beer. @kindseybernhard

23 Comments for Could Kentucky benefit from changing student ticket method?

  1. 8 god
    9:39 pm September 17, 2015 Permalink

    I don’t think student attendance Saturday will be an issue. It’s a monumental game against a traditional power. They will actually care, unlike during an apparent blowout against Lafayette.

  2. Sam Sharp
    10:03 pm September 17, 2015 Permalink

    No points for grades, academic accomplishments, or tuition paid? I thought the primary objective of Universities was to foster and reward education.

    • DB11
      10:12 pm September 17, 2015 Permalink

      It’s called a GPA…

    • Captain Obvious
      10:19 pm September 17, 2015 Permalink

      And a degree…

    • Gowcats
      10:50 pm September 17, 2015 Permalink

      Have you ever heard of the college experience? Social ease with other people, other than online gaming is a plus to employers, not to mention having memories of something other than this one time your study group got together and madness ensued.

    • Gowcats
      10:58 pm September 17, 2015 Permalink

      And if you are only interested in academics and have zero interest in sports this doesn’t apply to you anyway. But then again, this is primarily a sports site, so what are you doing on this site anyway?

  3. UK86
    10:39 pm September 17, 2015 Permalink

    I think this (or something like it) is exactly what UK should do. Any way to get the students motivated to attend all sports, but FOOTBALL in particular, would be extremely helpful. I think this is a very creative way to make it happen. Thanks for the report.

  4. JHyrne
    10:44 pm September 17, 2015 Permalink

    Seriously….is anyone else offended that the student ID is called a Carolina Card???? Find a different vendor or get them to change the name!

    • Captain Obvious
      10:55 pm September 17, 2015 Permalink


    • ukjaybrat
      7:45 am September 18, 2015 Permalink

      …. they are called the carolina card at south carolina…. that’s not what our cards are called…

  5. JD
    10:49 pm September 17, 2015 Permalink

    What difference does it make if they leave at halftime and leave a big gaping hole in the lower level of the stadium,SMH.

    • ukjaybrat
      7:46 am September 18, 2015 Permalink

      That’s what i was thinking. They need to have a way students can scan their cards after the fourth quarter to get another point or so. otherwise they can just walk in walk out and tailgate the whole time without being penalized.

    • ukjaybrat
      7:46 am September 18, 2015 Permalink

      after fourth quarter -> after the final

    • Bigmac106
      8:45 am September 18, 2015 Permalink

      Last year they actually started giving out vouchers as you left the stadium at the end of the game for extra loyalty points. This was to combat the issue of people just walking in and then leaving at half time.

      Source: am student at USC

  6. DACats86
    8:10 am September 18, 2015 Permalink

    UGA has a similar system, and Saban vowed to personally track down and strangle any student that left an Alabama game early after they had a mass exodus in a blowout game last year. Alabama and Tuscaloosa police offered to assist.

    UK needs to follow suit. Ridiculous.

  7. Joey111113
    9:31 am September 18, 2015 Permalink

    I think this sounds like an awesome system, but I agree they should have to swipe their card after the game is over to get their points. Also, I think it’s a little exteme to suspend the student from games for the rest of the year if they have a ticket and don’t go. It would suck to be a senior who has car trouble or something on the way to the game and never be able to sit in the student section again!

  8. GAWildcat
    9:40 am September 18, 2015 Permalink

    UGA is coached by Richt.

  9. coachcalsays
    10:34 am September 18, 2015 Permalink

    Simple solution, you don’t attend or attempt to get tickets to football games you cannot get basketball tickets. Leave early to “par-tay”, loose your rights to basketball tickets.

  10. USC Student
    11:00 am September 18, 2015 Permalink

    We get points for going to basketball, football and baseball as well as soccer (men’s and women’s), volleyball, cross country etc. It’s not just the big three. Also to fix the problem of leaving at halftime, we get an extra point for staying until the end of the game so if you go to the football game and stay till the end you get 2 points

    • Kindsey Bernhard
      7:31 pm September 18, 2015 Permalink

      Thank you. I was using your student ticketing website as a reference.

  11. Grumpy Old Man
    11:09 am September 18, 2015 Permalink

    It’s crazy we have to provide incentives our own students to go to football games.

  12. Grumpy Old Man
    11:11 am September 18, 2015 Permalink

    stick them in the upper corners until they show up a few games in a row… they reward them with a small block of lowers.

  13. Student
    1:13 pm September 18, 2015 Permalink

    The problem wasn’t people not going to the game, It was people not staying. It was hot and most of the people had been at those seats for at least an hour to get the lower section seats. Also it was 24-7 against Lafayette and our defense playing stout. I don’t blame people for leaving