Iron Bowl tickets are more expensive than any BCS Bowl Game this season except the National Championship game. Michigan vs. Ohio State tickets are 47% more expensive than Big Ten Football Championship tickets. Why? Because nothing beats College Football Rivalry Week. It defines a season, divides households, and gives the winning team’s fans bragging rights for the entire year. A win against your rival can erase a bad season, save a coach’s job (or in USC case, earn one), win you top recruits, and sell a greater number of season tickets for the following year. A rivalry win gives students, alumni, and fans entitlement, the right to play their fight song at work, wear their school’s letters, and wave their University flags in front of their homes with pride. Often times we work with our rivals, and even live with our rivals, so a loss can mean a substantial amount of stress, tormenting, and an hourly reminder that your school is insignificant to its rival. Rivalries are created within city/state borders, among private and public schools, and midst elite programs. Some are old and some are new, but each is significant.
One rule I’ve learned over the years, is anything can happen on rivalry week. Perfect seasons are shattered, the unexpected happens, the underdog is not existent. Rivalry week this year will solidify many division and conference champions, and for some squash or heighten their chances at a bowl game. With so much of the line in an already highly-anticipated annual event, demand to attend these rivalry games is extremely high. Many of the 50,000+ seats in each stadium have been sold, so your best chance to get in is purchasing a ticket on the secondary market. And, while you can watch the game with your co-workers or family at home or at a bar, there is nothing like saying “I was there” when your team gets the (un)expected win on rivalry week. Plus, doesn’t it just put the cherry on top and give you more ammunition when you return to work on Monday if you were at the stadium to experience the victory?
College Football’s biggest rivalries will largely be played next weekend. The time is now to get out those fight song key chains, pull out your letterman jacket, and grab a ticket to the most important regular season game of the year.