SEC Football is miles ahead of most when it comes to tradition, talent, and atmosphere; so, why are we lagging so far behind when it comes to beer sales?
Before you call me a lush, more and more major programs are turning to beer sales to boost revenue. Over 40 schools now allow beer sales at football games, including Ohio State, Texas, Miami, Western Kentucky, West Virginia, and, of course, Louisville. Just this week, Purdue and Marshall agreed to sell beer at games, a move many schools are making to offset declining ticket sales. I don’t know about you guys, but having a cold one while sitting in the stands cheering my team on beats having a cold one and watching them from my couch any day.
Here’s a map from January 2016 that shows which schools sell beer at games:
In 2015, Texas made over $1.8 million on alcohol sales at games, a staggering stat. At the SEC spring meetings in Destin in May, the conference pushed off talk of beer sales once again. What’s the hold up?
Sure, there are plenty of loopholes; alcohol can be served in premium/suite areas in SEC stadiums, hence the rising number of stadium renovations to include said areas. Anyone who’s been to a night game at
Commonwealth Stadium Kroger Field can attest that people still sneak in flasks and pound beers in the parking lot beforehand to ensure a buzz. If the league is concerned that alcohol sales would increase hostility at games, check out this paragraph from the NCAA justifying its decision to sell alcohol at the baseball and softball College World Series last year.
“Part of the impetus for the decision came from school reports that indicated once they started selling alcohol at events, alcohol-related incidents declined sharply. Theories suggest that making alcohol available in the stadium prevents incidents of binge drinking before events and discourages people from attempting to bring outside alcohol into the venue.”
Makes sense to me. Come on, SEC. Let’s get with the times and make some (more) money.