Cardinal football season ticket sales up 42 percent over last year

What a difference a winning football record, a victory at the Orange Bowl and an expanded and more competitive conference can make to ticket sales.

Courtesy of David Gonzales Child getting autograph from Andrew Luck

Mia Gonzales, age 5, meets Andrew Luck and gets an autograph at the Football Open House on Aug. 21

Ticket distribution for the Cardinal’s home football opener against San Jose State last Saturday was 47, 816. The actual crowd was probably closer to 40,000. But the increased sea of red shirts in Stanford Stadium was noticeable to Cardinal fans who remember the sparser attendance of not-so-long-ago.

David Vargas, director of football marketing, talks about the increase in football ticket sales.

How are sales going this year?

We are up 42 percent versus a year ago in season ticket sales and have sold out numerous sections and games. We have been trending up the past couple of years, but this is certainly a significant jump in ticket sales versus recent years.


To what do you attribute the increase? 

No. 1, of course, is the team coming off a 12-1, Orange Bowl-winning 2010 season. There’s nothing like success to help grow awareness for the team and help us market Stanford Cardinal Football. The exciting style of play on both sides of the ball also helps make us a "must-see" team. Plus, we are the best value in all of Bay Area sports, with single game ticket prices starting at $14.


How many more people attended the annual August football open house than in the past, and did the attendance surprise you?

We had more then 3,000 people at the recent Stanford Football Open House—an increase of 50 percent from last year and consistent with the kind of increases we’ve been seeing at the Cardinal and White Spring Football Game, the Stanford Football Kick-off Dinner and other fan activities.


Is the new Pac-12 conference also helping?

Under Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott, the Pac-12 has grown in stature through such initiatives as the new Pac-12 Football Championship game, which will be played on Dec. 2. Also, there is the new Pac-12 Enterprises, including the new Pac-12 Television Network, and our own Pac-12 Digital Network. These initiatives have been keeping the Pac-12 in the news and in the daily sports dialogue.


What do the demographics show in terms of where the new interest in Cardinal football is coming from?

We’re seeing growth across all demographic sectors. But the most exciting has been the increase in sales among young alumni. We’re also seeing a return of lapsed season ticket buyers who had ceased to attend games.


What does increased ticket sales mean for the Cardinal program in general?

Increased ticket sales are a revenue boost to the Athletic Department that helps all of our intercollegiate sports programs.