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Distributing Super Bowl Tickets to STHs

Falcon Freddie

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Yeah, I know ... chickens, eggs, hatched ... but here's an article from the Denver Post published last January on how Super Bowl tickets are distributed (or not) to Season Ticket Holders


How the NFL controls Super Bowl ticket sales

By Jennifer Brown, Denver Post

PUBLISHED: January 29, 2016


Broncos season-ticket holders got one of two e-mails within a few hours of the team’s down-to-the-wire win over the New England Patriots, before the rush of a nerve-wracking AFC championship had even begun to wear off.

How many were among the lucky ones, whose inboxes held offers of face-value tickets to the Super Bowl?

That’s a secret the Broncos and NFL won’t tell.

The Broncos received thousands of tickets from the NFL, although the league won’t say exactly how many. Of those, an unknown amount were offered to Broncos season-ticket holders, and an unknown number were sold to PrimeSport, the Broncos’ “travel partner.”

Season-ticket holders who got the bad-news e-mail notifying them they didn’t win the ticket lottery instead were offered PrimeSport travel packages to San Francisco ranging from $2,000 to $7,500 per person depending on airfare and hotel.

Mike Siegrist was on the way home from the game Sunday when he got the e-mail suggesting he book a travel package through the Atlanta-based ticket company.

“Win or lose, the lottery is fine,” the season-ticket holder said. “It is wrong, however, after fans support the team year after year and we get to the Super Bowl, to take tickets which could be included in the lottery and sell them to a broker.”

The Broncos play in a stadium owned by taxpayers and should “be transparent about how they split the tickets they receive,” he said. “Their continued refusal to address the issue only leads us all to wonder what they are hiding.”

Denver-area consumers are paying, through a sales tax, the majority of the $400 million construction cost of Sports Authority Field at Mile High, which opened in 2001.

Broncos and league officials wouldn’t say how many tickets were offered to fans two years ago, the last time Denver was in the Super Bowl, and they wouldn’t say this week either.

PrimeSport also would not say how many tickets the company purchased from the Broncos.

Tim Hoops, a Broncos season-ticket holder since 1967 who has not won any of the team’s eight Super Bowl lotteries over nearly 40 years, was grateful for the “fun ride” this season but annoyed by the team’s secrecy leading up to the big game.

He called it “hypocritical that they cherish their strong fan base but totally manipulate them and their pocketbooks.”

The two Super Bowl [50] teams — the [Denver] Broncos and the Carolina Panthers — each receive 17.5 percent of tickets. Capacity for a regular-season game at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., is about 68,500, but capacity for the Super Bowl “hasn’t been finalized yet,” said NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy.

Doing simple math shows the Broncos got about 11,600 tickets, although the team and the league would confirm only that the number is in the ballpark. The Broncos have 23,000 season-ticket accounts, totaling 71,000 seats.

Broncos spokesman Patrick Smyth said the “limited number” of tickets from the league was divided among season-ticket holders and several other “internal and external” groups. Season-ticket holders were chosen through a computer-generated lottery weighted by tenure.

The Panthers said their total allotment of Super Bowl tickets is less than 10,000, The Charlotte Observer reported Friday. A team spokesman said 7,500 to 8,000 of those tickets go to personal seat license owners. The others go to players’ and coaches’ families and friends and others affiliated with the team.

The NFL retains 25 percent of Super Bowl tickets to sell to media members, sponsors and others. The San Francisco 49ers, as hosts of this year’s game, get 5 percent of the tickets, and the remaining NFL teams each get 1.2 percent.


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