More than 14,000 of the 17,500 tickets Virginia Tech was allotted for the Sugar Bowl are accounted for as the Hokies get set to travel to New Orleans later this week, the school’s ticket office said Tuesday morning.
That figure, though, is a bit misleading. Virginia Tech has actually sold 10,243 tickets and, through the school’s proxy program, fans have purchased another 409 tickets that will be distributed to military personnel and various New Orleans charity organizations.
Sandy Smith, Virginia Tech’s assistant athletic director for ticketing services, said Tuesday an additional 4,000 tickets will be distributed to military personnel with the cost being picked up by a combination of the school and the ACC, because both would have to cover the cost of unsold tickets anyway.
Smith added that he expects to sell more of the school’s ticket allotment in New Orleans over the next week. Athletic Director Jim Weaver has said no matter how many tickets the school sells, he expects 15,000 to 20,000 Hokies fans at the game
Virginia Tech’s inability to sell out its ticket allotment has come into the spotlight this year because of the Sugar Bowl’s controversial decision to select the Hokies based on their fan base’s ability to travel to bowl games. This year, though, Virginia Tech has done much better than recent seasons when it comes to selling tickets.
In 2009, when the Hokies faced Cincinnati in the Orange Bowl, Virginia Tech was only able to sell about 3,300 tickets. For last season’s Orange Bowl against Stanford, the school sold a little more than 6,500 tickets.
The main issue confronting Virginia Tech once again this year has been the secondary market. The lowest face value for Sugar Bowl tickets is $120, but tickets were going for as little as $15 on StubHub on Tuesday.