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Need your opinion...

AORedHawk33AORedHawk33 Wealthy Alum
edited September 2018 in Football
We need your help...

For the last month and a half, I’ve been trying to organize a road trip to see Miami football play Army at West Point on October 20th.

It’s rare that the RedHawks make a trip to the east coast since UMASS moved on from the MAC. Needless to say, there are a few of us who have had October 20th, 2018 circled on the calendar for quite some time.

On August 17th, I emailed Miami’s ticketing department inquiring about Army tickets. I received no response from them, so three days later I tried going through the Army ticketing office..... Ryan Beckner (name of the ticket rep) informed me that group tickets were sold at a lesser rate and gave me the breakdown of prices per section, number of guests, and game. It’s been tough trying to rally people to go to the game, and I am still unsure of our final number, but knew it’d be in the ballpark of 20-25 Miami fans. Ryan was sympathetic to my situation, and let me know that if I put down a 25% deposit down, he’d reserve as many tickets as need be, and then once the other 75% was due (two weeks before the game), we would adjust the amount of tickets needed and price.

This excited me and it got me even more pumped about the trip. I immediately reached out to Miami University’s New York Alumni Chapter via Facebook on August 22, and asked if I could organize a bus trip. They responded immediately as well, and the chapter president was gung-ho about getting it done. We had a plan in place the next day (Move-In Miami Day) and forwarded our plans to an associate director of alumni chapters. We knew that she’d be busy with the fundraising end of things, especially on Move-In Miami, but the three of us were able to set up a phone conference at the associates liking.

To no ones surprise, the New York chapter president and I were left in the dust.. as the associate never showed up for the phone conference, nor did they answer the next 5 emails. Earlier this week (roughly 3 weeks after the plan was in place), we received an email from the associate saying that we were good go, but that the event could not be posted online for at least another two weeks. This meant that the bus trip could not be advertised nor purchased until three weeks before the actual game.

I was discouraged, but hopeful that we could do our own recruiting via MHT and social media... plus between friends and family, the bus was already 1/3 of the way full!!! The associate asked for the final invoice.... I called the bus company I had been working with to finally place a formal reservation.

Unfortunately both bus companies who is been working with were now sold out. “I’m so sorry, but we had to give away your bus this past weekend,” was what I heard over the phone. “I wish you would’ve called me last week!” was the other response. I hurried to find comparable quotes from other charter bus companies, but all other quotes were exorbitantly more than the original quote I presented.

So long story short (or short story long), we are left renting a few child molester looking vans from NJ and NY, which will still be a great time.
—————
Just as we are about to buy our tickets through Army, I decide to follow up on my original Miami e-mail because I feel guilty that our group won’t be buying from them. I give them another chance.

Contrary to the first email I sent, this time I receive a response almost immediately, but the tickets are more expensive by $11 a ticket... which adds up when you account for a bus rental and tailgating supplies (including Alex’s meat). Where does Miami get off upcharging their alumni and fans?? Need I remind you of 11 of 12 losing seasons. Not to mention, we can only buy an 8 ticket maximum, and there is no deposit plan.

———-

So here we are.... We are stuck between a rock and a hard place. Do we give our hard earned money to the Army athletic department who is cost-effective, responsive, and caring OR do we sit in the Miami section, because we all still feel an ounce of loyalty to our alma mater.

Quick breakdown-

Tickets through Army:
Cheaper and no fees
Able to buy as many as we need
Able to put down a deposit

Tickets through Miami:
More expensive by $11 a ticket (without fees)
Only 8 at a time
No deposit

Help us!!!!!

Joe Reel
Class of 2010
redhawk11
«1

Comments

  • bpatbpat Senior Barfly
    You could look at it as you're supporting the troops by going Army. I don't think you owe Miami anything. It certainly seems they don't particularly care on the athletic front.
    It would make a great story for the Miamian ;)

  • NickskinNickskin Wealthy Alum
    GO ARMY
  • redhawk11redhawk11 Wealthy Alum
    It is part of the Miami Charm
  • RedseaRedsea Wealthy Alum
    I would think you should do whatever you think will make the Miami fans that you recruited to go the happiest. Probably the army option. Then maybe they will be more likely to go again.
  • skin66skin66 Wealthy Alum
    Do the Army thing.
  • BluesmanBluesman Wealthy Alum
    Sad situation Joe. No Miami fan should ever have to be put in this situation. Never.
  • EDDIEEDDIE Wealthy Alum
    Definitely Army. You can still root for Miami in the Army section.
  • DICKDICK Wealthy Alum
    Joe, thanks for all the effort you put into supporting our team.  As I have discovered over the years, Miami often makes it very difficult to be a fan.  None the less, we love our school.  Don't give up.  Even if this football season continues downhill, I do think both basketball teams are going to be good in the upcoming years. If Chuck can't rally the troops, somebody else should get the chance next year.
    redhawk11naptownHawkKoheen
  • NickskinNickskin Wealthy Alum
    DICK said:

    Joe, thanks for all the effort you put into supporting our team.  As I have discovered over the years, Miami often makes it very difficult to be a fan.  None the less, we love our school.  Don't give up.  Even if this football season continues downhill, I do think both basketball teams are going to be good in the upcoming years. If Chuck can't rally the troops, somebody else should get the chance next year.

    This.

    Joe's willing to organize a bus trip with approximately 50 people to an away game and:

     (1) can't get the Miami ticket office to call him back and 
     (2) can't get assistance from the Miami alumni office with the trip. 

       
    8D
    naptownHawk
  • BluesmanBluesman Wealthy Alum
    I would strongly suggest reaching out to David Sayler, if you haven't already. He is a lot more receptive than you might think. Also, Miami does not set prices for away games. The home team does. I have talked to David about this in the past. That being said the lack of support from the NY alumni association is quite disturbing. 
    dave67
  • RenmancoRenmanco Wealthy Alum
    This is why the Miami "fan base" continues to shrink. In 2018, you simply cannot handle those who would like to be your customers this way.

    I've been to a game at West Point...it is a great setting and and overall fabulous experience. Sit on the Army side if you have to.
  • Bluesman said:

    I would strongly suggest reaching out to David Sayler, if you haven't already. He is a lot more receptive than you might think. Also, Miami does not set prices for away games. The home team does. I have talked to David about this in the past. That being said the lack of support from the NY alumni association is quite disturbing. 

    Just want to point out... the New York Alumni Association was, and is, terrific.  The President was super motivated to get this done.  Unfortunately, it was the higher-ups in Oxford who failed to respond, and approve the trip in a timely manner.
    naptownHawk
  • TruckCrewTruckCrew Wealthy Alum
    edited September 2018
    Regarding the ticket pricing: I don’t know any more than what I’ve read here, but Army can do whatever they want with ticket prices to their home games. Miami can’t do anything to ticket pricing for road games. So it doesn’t surprise me that Army offered a group rate.

    However that doesn’t make the lack of response you received acceptable.

    Edit: I now see Blues offered the same opinion. I hope I’m not censored for redundancy!
    redhawk11
  • hawkattack06hawkattack06 Off-Campus Slummer

    Bluesman said:

    I would strongly suggest reaching out to David Sayler, if you haven't already. He is a lot more receptive than you might think. Also, Miami does not set prices for away games. The home team does. I have talked to David about this in the past. That being said the lack of support from the NY alumni association is quite disturbing. 

    Just want to point out... the New York Alumni Association was, and is, terrific.  The President was super motivated to get this done.  Unfortunately, it was the higher-ups in Oxford who failed to respond, and approve the trip in a timely manner.
    Why is Oxford even involved? Why can't the alumni groups just organize their own events?
  • Go Army! Take Miami fans/Alumni money.
  • Bluesman said:

    I would strongly suggest reaching out to David Sayler, if you haven't already. He is a lot more receptive than you might think. Also, Miami does not set prices for away games. The home team does. I have talked to David about this in the past. That being said the lack of support from the NY alumni association is quite disturbing. 

    Just want to point out... the New York Alumni Association was, and is, terrific.  The President was super motivated to get this done.  Unfortunately, it was the higher-ups in Oxford who failed to respond, and approve the trip in a timely manner.
    Why is Oxford even involved? Why can't the alumni groups just organize their own events?
    Because Oxford provides the mail outs (whether through snail mail or email blasts) announcing alumni chapter events, plus they provide a way for participants to rsvp and pay online for events and subsequently pay the vendors. Sure, an alumni chapter could handle all of that themselves, but having served as a chapter president for several years I found that the alumni office in Oxford had more up to date and current contact information for alums in my area then I could ever hope to compile. Plus, a lot vendors and venues want some sort of payment up front which was always handled more efficiently by the alumni office than by a small group of volunteers. Not saying the alumni office is always timely or efficient. Obviously for this particular New York chapter event that appears not to be the case, but for the most part handling the announcement of events and the money involved by the alumni office in Oxford makes things easier and simpler for the people who are essentially volunteering their time.    
    DSnyder15dave67
  • grumpy1grumpy1 Senior Barfly
    Just another in a long history of incompetence and ineptitude.  The names may change but the service remains the same.

    BTW, DICK first said "Miami makes it hard to be a fan" sometime in the 80's and here we are.
    redhawk11The_Sackman
  • RenmancoRenmanco Wealthy Alum
    Putting all of this into context, shouldn't the ticket office, etc. be eager to work with both alums and alumni chapters for the greater good of all. From this incident as well as others that have been documented/commented upon in the past, it all comes across as more adversarial than cooperative.
  • dave67dave67 Wealthy Alum
    It is a disgrace that the Ticket Operations (or whatever is the right term) / Alumni Office (Chapter Support) can't make that stuff happen.  Like Bash, I was a Chapter Pres for several years and needed the Alumni Office to handle the voluminous list for some 40,000 alumni in the Greater Cincinnati area; however comma that was the extent of real support.  A shame there is not someone in the athletic office who does intra University communication and coordination.  I spent a lot of time going to and from Millett and Murstein on my own.
    Off the soapbox, and out of the Jungle.
  • yanksalexyanksalex Wealthy Alum
    edited September 2018
    The issue here is not the differing ticket prices, as the only difference in the prices is a group discount. This is a far cry from last year when Miami was selling us tickets to the Notre Dame game at $90, when the face value on those tickets was $45. 

    The issue here is that, as @DICK said, Miami can make it really hard to be a proactive fan. Frankly, Miami has so few fans that there really is no one on the front lines in a customer service capacity. To the extent @AORedHawk33 got any resolution here, it was because the athletic director got involved personally. That's both great in this instance and not a sustainable customer service model in the long term.

    I can, as others already have, speak to the horrors of dealing with the Miami Alumni Association's mothership in Oxford. The employees of the association are do-nothings that, in particular, treat initiatives involving athletics with the same regard Brad Bates treated men's basketball. Contrast that with the average alumni association of a FBS school in America, which harnesses the power of collegiate athletics to its favor to galvanize its alumni base.

    The complete inaction as it relates to the Army game, I find, to be particularly egregious. I don't know when the last time Miami football played within 100 miles of New York City, but I imagine it has been decades. I cannot believe there has been absolutely 0 attempt to galvanize and congregate alumni at the game. Further, I cannot believe that it took alums like AO and me (but, mostly, AO) to even think about bringing people en masse from NYC and making a weekend out of the game. And further still, I cannot believe that when presented with the idea and having the local alumni chapter on board, the collective response from Oxford was a shrug. The nonfeasance of the NYC Chapter's liaison in Oxford (e.g., blowing off scheduled conference calls and failing to respond to emails) would be grounds for dismissal at most similar jobs. 

    The problems encountered here are just part and parcel of the frustration Miami fans face regularly. There efforts out of Oxford to galvanize support in our athletics vary from minimal and nonexistent, and grassroots attempts by fans are treated with varying levels of ambivalence and, sometimes, disdain. Just ask @NickSkin about the 6th Man Club.
    redhawk11skin66MowchAORedHawk33JohnnyMacprofholt82naptownHawkKoheen
  • redhawk11redhawk11 Wealthy Alum
    While Bates attempted the LARGEST GATHERING OF MIAMI FANS EVER, the alumni association wants this to be the smallest.
  • RenmancoRenmanco Wealthy Alum
    Watching the whole department implode....pretty sad.
    redhawk11
  • missmiamimissmiami Summer Orientee
    That is totally unacceptable by the alumni association liaison in Oxford to drop the ball like that. As much as it pains me, but I'd go through Army on this one. I only needed 2 and bought through Miami, just hope they get mailed to me in time! 

    And does anyone know why the Red and White club hasn't set anything up except for those who can spend $$$ on this? 


    redhawk11yanksalexLove_and_HonornaptownHawk
  • JohnnyMacJohnnyMac Wealthy Alum
    Cheapest tickets on StubHub right now for The Other Miami @ Toledo are $52.
    greggie76
  • profholt82profholt82 Wealthy Alum
    JohnnyMac said:

    Cheapest tickets on StubHub right now for The Other Miami @ Toledo are $52.

    Not sure how that's relevant to the discussion here, but my old man got his undergrad at UT and he's pretty excited about that game tonight. Toledo has hosted quite a few power conference schools over the years. Their AD must be a real go-getter, or at the very least a ball buster.
  • RenmancoRenmanco Wealthy Alum
    Right up the street from Millett is what they claim is a world class undergraduate B-school.
    In the past, and on many occasions,I have suggested that Miami ICA seek some assistance from them in marketing, brand building, creating a larger fan base, etc., etc. I have never received anything more than a "thanks".....but never any action.
    The incident reported and commented on here is symptomatic of an organization that does not care to better themselves, seek assistance or work in the interests of their customers.
    This is how businesses fail.
    As an alum, it pains me to mention all of this but I do want Miami to be better than mediocre in all that they do....and ICA has a long way to go to raise itself to the level of the rest of the University.
    naptownHawkQuinoaburger
  • MooreHawkMooreHawk Off-Campus Slummer

    JohnnyMac said:

    Cheapest tickets on StubHub right now for The Other Miami @ Toledo are $52.

    Not sure how that's relevant to the discussion here, but my old man got his undergrad at UT and he's pretty excited about that game tonight. Toledo has hosted quite a few power conference schools over the years. Their AD must be a real go-getter, or at the very least a ball buster.
    The AD at Miami (FL) at the time was a friend of Toledo's it sounds like, plus they apparently are fans of playing home and homes with G5 teams since it saves them money on the buy games and they aren't filling Hard Rock that often, especially for OOC games.
    profholt82
  • MooreHawk said:

    JohnnyMac said:

    Cheapest tickets on StubHub right now for The Other Miami @ Toledo are $52.

    Not sure how that's relevant to the discussion here, but my old man got his undergrad at UT and he's pretty excited about that game tonight. Toledo has hosted quite a few power conference schools over the years. Their AD must be a real go-getter, or at the very least a ball buster.
    The AD at Miami (FL) at the time was a friend of Toledo's it sounds like, plus they apparently are fans of playing home and homes with G5 teams since it saves them money on the buy games and they aren't filling Hard Rock that often, especially for OOC games.
    Having a solid program and ties with Gary Pinkel (for the Mizzou game at least) doesn't hurt either. Toledo draws well enough to where they're probably not as dependent on buy games too.
  • 19goSkins19goSkins Senior Barfly
    Stay at home and rearrange your sock drawer. Much better option.
    Professor_FateAORedHawk33
  • Cincykid3Cincykid3 Wealthy Alum
    For sure.
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