Michigan State athletic director Mark Hollis announced a new pricing policy for football season tickets Thursday at Spartan Stadium.
The changes include assigning equal prices to season tickets throughout the stadium ($308), a $4-per-game increase for student season tickets and expansion of the “scholarship” seating areas.
Some season tickets in the end zone had been less expensive than in other areas of the stadium.
Most season-ticket holders will be required to make a donation of $25-$600, depending on where they sit, to the Spartan Fund.
“We’re going to ask those that support Spartan athletics on a season basis to become members of the Spartan Fund, to make a contribution in addition to purchasing tickets,” Hollis said. “It will have a financial impact on fans. We’re trying to keep it modest.”
What if someone wants season tickets but doesn’t want to contribute to the Spartan Fund?
“There are seats in the upper east stands that will not have a premium associated with it,” Hollis said. “We have found, both here and at other stadiums, that … to be the lower portion of the bowl is desirable.
“There are amenities available in the west upper stands that aren’t available in the east upper stands, so there is a contribution that is on (the west) side.”
Hollis said this change is not intended to be a reseating plan.
“It’s taking what we believe is the market value of each seat and associating a contribution as part of that,” Hollis said.
Hollis said those who have had season tickets for more than 50 years will be grandfathered in and will not have to pay the extra contribution. That affects about 400 seats.
Donations to the Spartan Fund are tax-deductable.
The Spartans were in the middle range of the Big Ten last season in premium seat pricing and ticket-price-per-game. Even with the increases, Hollis said the Spartans still won’t be near the top of the Big Ten in season-ticket costs.
“We’ve had four tremendous years,” Hollis said. “As an AD, any time you have something happen positive, it comes at a cost.”
Hollis said the new pay structure will help pay for increasing athletic costs, including rising salaries for assistant coaches, stadium upkeep and a new scoreboard and two video boards.
Student ticket prices will increase to $164 for the season ($22 per game and a $10 T-shirt).
Individual game tickets will cost $50 for non-premium games and $80 for premium games. Next season, all games will be premium except Eastern Michigan and Northwestern.