Ticket policy fails amid criticism

The U will revert to offering both bundled and single-sport deals.

The University of Minnesota is revoking its new season ticket bundling policy, which required students who wanted hockey or basketball season passes to also purchase the less-popular football package.

The athletics department claimed its new bundling policy was a way to reward fans, saying in a statement that the packaging deal aimed to “make it possible for our most engaged students to attend the sporting events they desired at a discounted price.”

However, the policy saddled some students with extra costs for tickets they may not have wanted. This spurred criticism from many students and even Gov. Mark Dayton.

“The Legislature and I did not provide the additional funding for the University to freeze students’ tuitions over two years so that you could invent other ways to increase their costs,” Dayton wrote in a letter to University President Eric Kaler on Friday morning.

After the letter went public — creating a public relations nightmare for the University — the school’s athletics department announced it would return to its previous student ticket bundling practices next school year. These practices include both bundled options as well as single-sport deals.

It’s clear that Gophers football isn’t as popular as men’s hockey, but we believe that’s no excuse for the University to take advantage of its students’ wallets to “boost” football ticket sales. We applaud the stern criticisms by Dayton and many students, which got the University to reverse a policy that shouldn’t have existed in the first place.