In 2010, the University of Minnesota decided to ban the sale of alcohol in all areas of TCF Bank Stadium. Originally, the University administration wanted to sell alcohol only in premium areas, but when forced to choose between selling it everywhere or nowhere, they chose to not sell it at all.
Now the debate is back on the table, with basically the same problem. The Minnesota Senate approved a new bill that would allow alcohol only to be sold in certain areas, but in the end, the Board of Regents makes the final decision. The University should allow TCF Bank Stadium to sell alcohol to everyone of age in the stadium, including students.
The University must treat students like adults. Any students of legal age should be able to purchase alcohol at the stadium like they would be allowed to anywhere else. Selling alcohol at football games could also counter the problem of students binge drinking beforehand — with the option of buying alcohol at the stadium, students may not feel they need to drink a lot before games.
If the current bill goes through, it could mean an extra $2 million in revenue for the University. If the bill included selling to all people of drinking age, including students, this number would likely increase.
Whether the bill was brought back on the table because of the Vikings deal or because the University has a new president, the board should support selling alcohol to students as well as the general public.
The bill will now move to the House and then the governor, and then it must be approved by the Board of Regents. As the bill goes through, we should support ideas to sell to those in the student sections, which would increase revenue even more.