|Minnesota's had a hard time selling students on season tickets. (US Presswire)|
Minnesota opened TCF Bank Stadium in 2009, but it seems the novelty of the new stadium is beginning to wear off on students.
According to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, with only a few weeks left until Minnesota's home opener against New Hampshire -- Minnesota opens its season on the road against UNLV -- the school has sold only 2,000 student season ticket plans.
Compare that to when the school sold 10,000 student season ticket plans in the first year of the stadiums existence. That number has decreased each season, with 7,800 being sold in 2010 and 6,000 being sold in 2011.
Now the Gophers have sold only a third of last season's total, a very rapid decline.
The Star-Tribune asked students why there wasn't much interest in the team, and while some brought up cost -- the season tickets only cost $84 -- the major reason was a lack of wins. Since opening the stadium in 2009 the Gophers have played 21 games and have a record of 7-14 in those games.
Of those 14 losses, some have come to teams like New Mexico State, North Dakota State and
The school has some things planned to help increase ticket sales for the 2012 season, including a video featuring MarQueis Gray that will be emailed to all 40,000 students, as well as fliers around campus and even athletic director Norwood Teague riding around in a golf cart giving tickets away.
Minnesota also expects student ticket sales to pick up once students are on campus, and that certainly makes sense. Still, it seems the only real way to get students interested in purchasing tickets would be winning the games those tickets are being sold to.
I don't think Minnesota needs to start winning Big Ten titles to reignite interest in the program, but the losses to the North Dakota States of the world need to end. Once that happens, the students will return.