The Pains of Penn State Football Tickets

Erin MaweContributor IJune 7, 2010

STATE COLLEGE, PA - NOVEMBER 7: Penn State Nittany Lion fans cheer as their team runs onto the field during a game against the Ohio State Buckeyes on November 7, 2009 at Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania. Ohio State won 24-7. (Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
Hunter Martin/Getty Images




Ah, June. For college students, summer has begun, and a relaxing few months ensues. 

With June also comes the panic of wondering whether Penn State students will get season tickets for football. 

Last May, I made the mistake of forgetting to pre-register, so I was not able to purchase my own season tickets. 

Pre-register, you ask? At Penn State, the process of acquiring season tickets is almost as lengthy and difficult as actually getting into the university.

First, students have to pre-register by a certain day in mid-May. This requires logging into Ticketmaster and essentially "fake-buying" tickets. Once you have done this, you are allowed to attempt to actually purchase the tickets.

This dreaded day comes sometime in June, with each class level having a separate day to do so. 

Starting on June 21, seniors will drag themselves out of bed at 7 a.m. to frantically log onto Ticketmaster and complete the process. If you are late by even one minute, you won't get tickets.

This, in my opinion, is absolutely ridiculous. With the biggest stadium in the country, ALL students at Penn State should have the opportunity to purchase season tickets if they want to. 

For the students lucky enough to actually get tickets, the adventures really begin when football season starts.

For anyone who has tuned into a Penn State football game only to wonder, "where are the students?" I have the answer. In case you haven’t seen this phenomenon, the student section at Beaver Stadium doesn’t fill up until midway through the second quarter.

From the time you get in line to enter the stadium until you are happily crammed into the bleachers, there is just mass chaos. I know that having the biggest stadium in the country (sorry Michigan!) comes with some responsibility, and the stadium staff isn't handling it very well. 

Students use their IDs to get into games, and the computer-swipers are particularly temperamental. If your ID doesn't successfully swipe, you have to go and stand in yet another line to be looked up in the computer system.

After that debacle, there is another line to get your paper ticket. Once you have that, you're golden. Right? Wrong. 

The ramps and staircases leading to the student section have a Los Angeles-worthy traffic jam. I have literally spent over an hour standing on the stairs, only to hear “Zombie Nation” in the distance. 

Along with the thousands of students standing on the ramp with me, I missed kickoff for the Iowa and Ohio State games this year, despite getting in line at least an hour and a half early. Let me tell you, none of us were happy campers.

So this is my plea: Penn State athletics needs to find a better ticketing system. I love Happy Valley and everything Penn State, but if these ticketing kinks aren't worked out soon, there are going to be some 40,000 very unhappy students.