Friday, November 11, 2005
Student basketball fans get free admission
By Rebecca Wyatt, OU Web Writer
Coming off successful seasons, including the men’s basketball team’s first trip to the Division I NCAA Tournament, enthusiasm for OU’s basketball teams is at a fever pitch. The OU Athletics Department is trying to keep the excitement high with some changes for student fans this year, including free admission.
Students coming to the games will no longer have to pay admission.
“We did this because we wanted students to be able to come out and support the teams,” said Jim Norton, associate athletics director of external operations. “We didn’t want cost to be a reason they weren’t able to come to the games.”
Norton said students pay money to be students and the Athletics Department feels part of that experience should be the opportunity to support the basketball teams.
With the free admission, students also are getting an upgrade in seats. In previous years, the student section was located at the end of the O’rena in the bleachers. This year, the first 120 students at each home game will be moved around the corner of the venue into what Norton calls the “nice, cushy chairs.”
Students who turn out for the games also can sign up to be part of the Grizz Gang. Participants will receive a free T-shirt to wear to the games to cheer on the Grizzlies with their fellow student fans.
“It’s the kind of gang you can go home and tell your mom about,” Norton said.
Athletics hopes the changes will keep students involved and coming to the games, and hopefully bring out new fans.
“Come out and watch the team as they dance again,” Norton said.
For more information and a complete schedule of the men’s and women’s basketball teams, visit the OU Athletics Web site.