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August 25, 2012

Thank You, Please Show Up

Filed under: Fans,Football,Money — Chas @ 12:21 pm

Over the years, Pitt fans have taken a fair share of (mostly deserved) abuse for the number of empty seats at the football games. Especially from Penn State fans who love to stress that they support their team no matter what. Well, after all that has happened, it seems that there might be a bit more of a struggle to sell tickets this year. Starting with that season opener to honor “the legends who stayed.”

To the point where for the first time ever/decades/years — no one is exactly sure — Penn State is offering discount tickets to Penn State employees. But of course, it isn’t because the tickets aren’t selling. No, no, nooooo. It’s to recognize and thank the employees in these recent times of turmoil.

Penn State spokeswoman Jill Shockey said there are about 10,000 seats still available for the game. Of those, about 3,500 have been set aside for employees.

“If more tickets need to be made available for the employee appreciation offer, Athletics has said they will address that,” Shockey said in an email.

Penn State’s Office of Human Resources and department of athletics are offering the ticket deal. The university’s retirement plan partner, TIAA-CREF, is supporting concession vouchers and giving the first 1,000 employees with IDs at the upper concourse behind the NA or NL sections a special gift.

The deal is 2 tickets for $79 plus $20 in concession vouchers.

A friend of mine forwarded the e-mail (he’s married to a PSU employee).

If you want to read the actual e-mail, it is below the fold.

From: “Susan Basso, Associate Vice President for Human Resources”
Sent: Thursday, August 23, 2012 3:27:02 PM
Subject: Employee appreciation event offers special ticket rate to Sept. 1 game

Employee appreciation event offers special ticket rate to Sept. 1 game

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State’s Office of Human Resources and Intercollegiate Athletics have partnered for a special employee appreciation opportunity. To thank employees for their dedication during the last several months, all full-time University faculty and staff will be eligible for a limited-availability, specially priced package of two game tickets and two accompanying $10 concession vouchers to the Sept. 1 football game versus Ohio University at Beaver Stadium.

“The commitment and resolve of our faculty and staff have been tremendous during the most challenging of times, and we want to say thank you,” said Susan Basso, associate vice president for Human Resources. “Through the generous support of Penn State Human Resources’ retirement-plan partner TIAA-CREF, we are able to extend this offer to employees to come out and support our student-athletes during their first game of this very special season.”

Beginning 8 a.m. Monday (Aug. 27), any full-time employee with a valid University I.D. card will be eligible to purchase the opening game package for the employee appreciation price of $79.

The employee appreciation sale will be conducted on a first-come, first-served basis and will conclude at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 29, or when tickets are no longer available. Specially priced tickets will not be sold to employees prior to 8 a.m. Monday.

Full-time employees may call 1-800-NITTANY to secure the ticket package by credit card. Employees will be required to verify their employment status using their employee I.D. card number at the time of purchase. All employees also are able to purchase $10 advance parking permits for the game at that time.

Employees also may purchase their ticket packages in person, as work schedules permit, at the outside windows of the Beaver Stadium Ticket Office (adjacent to Gate E) during the promotional period, 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Aug. 27-29. Those wishing to purchase tickets in person will be required to show their Penn State I.D. card at the time of purchase.
University Park employees who order by phone must pick up their ticket packages and parking permits in person by 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 30, no exceptions, please.

Non-University Park employees will pick up their tickets at the Beaver Stadium will call window on game day and also will have the option of paying for express mail service to receive the ticket package and parking permit by Friday, Aug. 31. The parking permit must be displayed in vehicles approaching parking lots on game day.

Parking permits not purchased in advance will cost $40.

The first 1,000 faculty and staff employees who attend the game Sept. 1 and show their Penn State I.D. to Human Resources staff on the upper concourse behind either Section NA or NL will receive a special gift from TIAA-CREF.

A limited number of season tickets also remain available for full-time University faculty and staff in the Red or Blue seating zones of Beaver Stadium at 50 percent of the Nittany Lion Club published giving levels. Information on remaining ticket locations is also available by calling 1-800-NITTANY. Employee season tickets are reserved seating locations for all home games.

For complete game day information, including stadium seating diagrams, driving directions, parking lot layout and other details, visit

Click here for a special message from members of this year’s football team.

Even season ticket packages in the endzone being sold at clearance prices. It is definitely a new world in Happy Valley.

Perhaps they could throw a few free tickets Mike McCreary’s way. He has been a little strapped since they fired him a few months ago.
And don’t forget about Joe’s fat lawyer son, the one who vowed to find the ‘real’ truth in Freeh’s quagmire of lies. Of course, fat-boy might not make it to all of the games as he is a little tied up, supervising the construction of his 9,000 sq ft new house.
And I know that Spanier and his cadre of lawyers would love a few free seats. A day in the Beaver Stadium sunshine would be a welcome reprieve from the constant barrage of finger-pointing they have been forced to defend.
Jay, of course, would like nothing better. Perhaps his seats could be right next to the coaches booth, so it could feel like old times.
And don’t forget putting a few in the will-call list for Schultz and Curley. They don’t have anything scheduled till December. And maybe PSU could include a few dogs and some nachos; after all, PSU is still footing the bill for their legal expenses, so what’s a few refreshments for the fellows who have dedicated themselves to the Blue and White?

Comment by Gas 08.25.12 @ 1:09 pm

The civil law suits are just starting, PSU has very deep pockets and will pay dearly but no amount of money can ever remove the atrocious behavior of so many not protecting innocent children, may all of the guilty who tried to ignore Sandusky burn in hell.

Comment by WLAT and the Big Beat 08.25.12 @ 1:52 pm

OK, so you have a 12 game exhibition season. Even if you win ’em all (ahem), it won’t mean a thing. I liken this to all the folks who call for tax increases on the rich to help pay down the deficit, but when they are asked to volunteer to pay more taxes, they suddenly can’t find their wallets. All that talk and bluster about rallying around the flag is a bunch of rubbish. At least some of those losers who graduated from that pile of garbage have the remaining sense to show some form of embarrassment by not showing up on a Saturday as if nothing happened.

Comment by wally 08.25.12 @ 1:54 pm

“The deal is 2 tickets for $79 plus $20 in concession vouchers.”

In the immortal words of Izzy Polansky, “vs. Ohio, such a deal.”

“giving the first 1,000 employees with IDs at the upper concourse behind the NA or NL sections a special gift.”

All those left over JoePa tees.

Comment by steve1 08.25.12 @ 2:31 pm

A raise might have been a better employee appreciation opportunity, since PSU hasn’t given one in a few years now.

Comment by Lee in Altoona 08.25.12 @ 2:41 pm

LOL. Fuck PSU.

Comment by Chris 08.25.12 @ 3:01 pm

Pitt should do the same sort of thing with it’s employees… for ALL the games.

Comment by Joe D 08.25.12 @ 3:50 pm

They’ll still have 70k there every weekend. The chip in the alumi’s heads starts giving them terrible headaches if they don’t get back to the campus.

Comment by Yeti 08.25.12 @ 3:56 pm

How about free tickets for the inmates of Rockview. For good behavior.

Comment by alcofan 08.25.12 @ 4:50 pm

I don’t know guys, it’s hard to hate on Penn State when they can “only” bring in 70k for a game. Where does that leave us?

Comment by Timmeh 08.25.12 @ 5:50 pm

One more week, let’s hope we get a reasonable crowd for ribfest and Youngstown.

Comment by gc 08.25.12 @ 6:30 pm

Timmeh I watched The Truman Show the other night and Happy Valley and 70k football fans immediately came to mind.

Where would you rather be?

Comment by steve1 08.25.12 @ 6:33 pm

I understand that, but their fan loyalty and brand is still undeniable. I’d prefer to focus on building us up before putting them down.

Comment by Timmeh 08.25.12 @ 7:23 pm

We should always be building us up and putting them down.

Comment by Houston Panther 08.25.12 @ 8:00 pm

The Penn State brand was JoePa.

The realization that he’s gone is just now beginning to set in and the mystique he built over fifty years of coaching Penn State football is staring to oxidize.

Imagine for a second if Johnny Majora never left for Tennessee and continued to coach Pitt football for another 30 years.

Imagine if at the same time Jackie Sherrill stayed on board as his No. 2.

What would the Pitt brand have been?

I’m afraid for Penn Staters it’s now just beocme a matter of time until they realize they’re not right where they left off but back at square one wondering like we Pitt fans have done for three decades now as to when the glorious past will return.

It might be awhile.

Comment by PittofDreams 08.25.12 @ 8:06 pm

Imagine if Sherril never left… (I’m ok with Majors leaving… Sherril was the #1 recruiter)

look what happened by Pitt not putting up the money to keep Sherrill… If I’m not mistaken, it was for $300,000/yr in 1983.

Comment by Joe D 08.25.12 @ 8:40 pm

Don’t forget use of a private jet (i.e. for recruiting purposes only).

Big Oil in those days was tough to beat.

Comment by PittofDreams 08.25.12 @ 9:05 pm

FWIW, Pitt currently has 83 schollies — here is the rundown:

link to

Comment by wbb 08.25.12 @ 9:10 pm

Beaver stadium seats 108,000, with 10,000 tickets left for the opener that means they have sold about 98,000 tickets for that game. We will be lucky to have that amount for our first three games combined! The PSU fan base is as impressive as ever. However, they will be severely tested over the next 5 to 7 years.

Comment by HbgFrank 08.25.12 @ 9:23 pm

Give Penn State our record over the last 3 decades and see how many seats they would sell.
If you think I’m wrong, look at their attendance figures for basketball.
Pitt fans should never be criticized for their paying money. Pitt’s athletic department bears the burden of empty seats…quick, how many head coaches since 1970?

Comment by SFPitt 08.25.12 @ 10:47 pm

Not putting up the money to keep Sherrill cost Pitt tens of millions of dollars over the years.

Comment by Houston Panther 08.25.12 @ 10:49 pm

It also cost Jackie Sherrill a legitimate chance for a National Championship. When he left Pitt he left an incredably talented team behind. Sherrill thought he could duplicate his success at Texas AM and eventhough he had some good years, he had nothing comparable to what he accomplished at Pitt. He made a mistake by leaving Pitt. Posvar, Bozic & company made an even bigger mistake, in letting him leave. They nievely belived that they “Already had the Program” and that it would sustain itself. As much as I loved the Johnny Majors era, Jackie Sherrill’s teams were the most talented and provided the greatest period of sustained excellence.

Comment by Justinian 08.26.12 @ 12:20 am

Pitts AD’s and Admin have cost all Panther Fans dearly over the years. I’d love to forget everything from 1986 to about 2000 but I can’t because we live with those choices today.

Comment by Medium Panther 08.26.12 @ 12:22 am

There have been 10 different head coaches on opening day since 1970: 11 starting next week and who knows how many if you count Frank Kush, Haygood, Bennett, et al.
Pitt stadium in disrepair, a controversial move off campus and a few of the worst AD’s to come down the pike.
Read the comments by Medium Panther and Justinian. It starts at the top and our “top” has been awful.
Frankly, given our circus, Pitt fans ought to be given combat pay.

Comment by SFPitt 08.26.12 @ 7:47 am

It took such a rare convergence of forces to bring us to where we are today.

Wannstedt shown the door in a soap opera climax that many loyalists never thought they’d see.

Pederson reaching for the economically and maybe politically correct replacement whose own personal strife saves us from having to bear witness to his promise to instill a “Freddy Kreugar” like persona in the minds of Pitt players.

Then the anomaly, Pederson’s replacement for the replacement… the hiring of the Napoleon Bonaparte from Mesquite Texas who brought on the absolute lowest of the lows in Pitt football history.

It has taken all of the above to bring us to where we are today which is the point of departure for the Paul Chryst era at Pitt.

With everything that it took to bring us here, this has got be be REALLY REALLY GOOD!

Comment by PittofDreams 08.26.12 @ 8:09 am

maybe they will have to buy a temple home ticket to get apitt away ticket,enjoying our 200 plus mile drive one way,wondering why some cannot show being only miles away.

Comment by paul shannon 08.26.12 @ 8:23 am

up until the late 90s, the Pitt admin never seemed to understand the financial benefits of a good FB program … now with escalated TV and bowl payouts, it smacked them right in the face.

even as recent as December 2010, our own AD didn’t realize the competitive coaches’ salary market … and the hiring of Haywood clearly marked that Pitt was either unwilling or clueless to function as a top program even in the BE.

whether the admin remains committed to mainaining a competitive FB program remains to be seen as it has often waivered in the past but it would seem that the large financial benefits will finally smack them in the face

Comment by wbb 08.26.12 @ 8:30 am

I agree with timmeh. Pitt needs to focus on pitt. When pitt sells out heinz field every saturday, then we can talk smack

Comment by Pk 08.26.12 @ 8:31 am

+1 Medium Panther

Comment by alcofan 08.26.12 @ 9:08 am

penn state SUCKS! And that’s all I’m goin say bout dat.

Comment by Dr. Tom 08.26.12 @ 9:47 am

wasn’t Sherrill the first million dollar coach, maybe i’m wrong. I’m still glad i’m a Pitt fan and not a PSU zombie and 2012 is hopefully the start of a great era for Pitt. HTP!!!

Comment by steve h 08.26.12 @ 10:32 am

yes.. sort of… Sherril signed a 6 year deal for $1.7million… or about $300k/yr. It was the biggest contract for a football HC at the time.
BCS HC’s at the time probably made 100-200k/yr

Comment by Joe D 08.26.12 @ 10:52 am

Emblazoned on new t-shirts for the Ohio game is “What’s sodomy?”

Comment by steve1 08.26.12 @ 11:33 am

Don’t get me started on the Administration. Although Nordy makes the final call in many areas, the plan presentation and execution comes from Steve Pederson. He has failed in that regard.

Great things have ocurred under SP’s watch, but he wasn’t the one responsible for that. The “Pete” came as a result of a wealthy Pitt Alum, not Smiley’s glad handing. The ACC fit was a result of the body of work of Pitt, especially the AAU status and large endowment. If SP was on his game, we would have all the olympic sports ready to go, but we don’t. An AD failure in my mind. No 5 year plan or 10 year plan.

Would you rather have Steve P or Ollie Luck at the helm? You can say that about a lot of places and Pitt just needs an upgrade in that vital role. We need a presence in that position and I for one am glad that Steve P got trumped on the hiring of Paul Chryst!!

Comment by dhuffdaddy 08.26.12 @ 12:14 pm

Oh, the Penn State story….any mention of our Administration and I go off point. Sorry folks!

Could just be the weak schedule that PSU has. Look, outside Michigan, OSU and Wisc/MSU, the Big 10 is weak as far as quality opponents. With an even weaker out of conference schedule, it is tough to sell tickets. This is also just for the ome opener. Just sayin. I wish it was worse!

Comment by dhuffdaddy 08.26.12 @ 12:18 pm

PSU Tee’s “I was just making sure that he washed everywhere”!

Comment by jw in Raleigh 08.26.12 @ 1:15 pm

PK & Timmeh – fully agree. Even though the first game is against YSU, it’s at 6pm on a Sat night. I don’t expect 60k, but think 40k is a reasonable min expectation.

Comment by Joe Lawrence 08.26.12 @ 2:59 pm

Nice to see Tino still using ‘four different systems’ as a built in crutch for his upcoming possible bad play — another puff pastry piece by Dipaola…at least Zeise is gone — what a shameless hack he was.

Raise your hand if you’re ready to scream like me every time you hear Tino whine about having to learn a new system (like it was original Greek text) or bitch about the WRs.

AGAIN, Russell Wilson came from not only a different system but a completely different school, state, coaches, student body, etc. etc. etc. and put up Heisman quality numbers in his first and only year for Chryst. Shut up, stop winging/blaming, and play f#cking ball.

If Ray can be near to what he was and get 10-15 carries a game, and have Bennett carry about the same, we may have enough to bury 7-8 teams even with spectacularly mediocre QB play. Imagine if we had Tyler P. at the helm instead.

Comment by Matt N. 08.26.12 @ 3:22 pm

In other words, “Dear employees of PSU. Thank you.
Now give me $79!!”

Comment by Class of 69 08.27.12 @ 8:23 am

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