Archive for Thursday, April 22, 2004

Ticket holders to get 1st look at points

April 22, 2004


Men's basketball season-ticket holders soon will get their first idea of how a point system will affect their seating in Allen Fieldhouse.

Kansas University athletic department officials on Wednesday said they would send out letters May 24 notifying holders of about 9,000 season tickets with their point totals.

"Everybody will be getting a letter," said Jim Marchiony, associate athletic director for external affairs.

KU switched to a point system for allocating men's basketball season tickets earlier this year. Points are based on such factors as donations to the athletic department or the department's athletic scholarship funds dating to 1978, membership in the KU Alumni Association, past years of season-ticket purchases for basketball and other KU sports.

The letter will include a seating chart of Allen Fieldhouse, showing how the system would have worked if it had been applied during the 2003-04 season.

"We can't tell people where they'll be sitting because we have no way of knowing how much will be donated," Marchiony said. "So the next best thing is to take the data we have now, apply to this past season and say, 'With the points you have now, this is where you would have been sitting.'"

After May 24, season-ticket holders will have until Aug. 31 to increase their point totals by increasing their donations to the Williams Fund, which provides scholarships for student-athletes.

Letters also will be mailed to would-be donors who have expressed an interest in obtaining season tickets.

In response to rumors that donors could earn more points by holding on to their contributions until after point totals are calculated, Marchiony said donations received between Jan. 1, 2004, and June 30 would receive two points for every $100 rather than one point.

Also, after June 30, donors will be allowed to pledge amounts they intend to donate. Donors will earn points for pledges.

"If you're used to giving in January -- and a lot of people are -- this will let you pledge that amount in time for the 2004-05 season," Marchiony said.

Season tickets will be limited to two, four or six tickets per holder.

"There will be a breakdown on how many points it will take to get to buy two, four or six tickets," Marchiony said. "But we don't know what it'll be. We're not there yet."

Season-ticket holders who in the past have bought tickets with money collected from friends or relatives will be allowed to divide points among themselves.

"We know there are lots of cases where three or four couples have pooled their money and bought tickets in one person's name," Marchiony said. "But now only that one person -- the person in whose name the tickets were purchased -- gets the points.

"So if the others want points for whatever amount they put up, they need to call us. We'll set up a meeting. The point total won't change, but if all parties agree, we'll change the way they're allocated."

Marchiony said businesses and corporations that purchased season tickets also would be assigned seats subject to the points systems. The sole way for a corporation to garner points, he said, was through donations to the athletic department.

Plans call for allocating about 9,000 season tickets.

Letters explaining the new system were mailed to season-ticket holders and Williams Fund donors Wednesday.

Marchiony said a recent review revealed that about 1,200 ticket holders whose seats were in the second and third tiers of Allen Fieldhouse were not Williams Fund donors. Only Williams Fund donors will be eligible for season tickets in the coming season.

Last year, nondonors with first-tier seats had to put up $5,000 to keep their seats.

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