Who else has gone up to the U for the Ken Garff Performance Zone Overview/Sales Pitch?

We went up today. I figured it would be like a high pressure time share pitch, but it wasn’t. Pretty informative, actually. A couple of my thoughts.

  1. It’s really not for us, either from a cost standpoint or the game day experience. We’d prefer to tailgate with the other commoners.
  2. There’s a level there that they haven’t figure out how they’ll price it yet. Those are the seats that will be a dead-on look at the field up top of the new SEZ.
  3. The seats lowest down are still available, but the cost can choke most people. $6k/seat capital donation and then $2k/seat per year. That includes access to the Club amenities, food, better restrooms, etc.
  4. I was reminded of the push poll they did 3+ years ago on this topic. By the end of that I was extremely pissed because it was so obvious they were just doing the survey to say they did it. The new south end reflects exactly what they were pushing. High end concessions, inside seating for really high rollers, loge seating that has a shelf in front of you to hold your high end food, etc.

Anyone else taken a look and have some thoughts?

My only thought is that the people I know that had seats in the SEZ are now priced out. One friend had seats on the front row and now he’s up in the top corner.

For those that are going to say that is the price for better facilities, well…no.

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I sort of poked at that, but if I had known what your friend I would have poked harder. From a “watch the play develop” location the old SEZ was probably as good as it gets. The people that have chosen that location for years deserved better treatment.

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We’ve been sitting in our SEZ seats for 36 years.

Directly above the portal in section 2 (our seat mates brought the U banner that hung down into the portal each game)

Our seats were on the hash mark, 7th row. To get an affordable price we’ll be 20+ rows up even with the edge of the East stands.

We went to the presentation and laughed. To get 6 seats where our old ones were would have been $100,000 for the first season. My whole family works in public service jobs. The U has continued to call with each section, as they keep saying the next will be better. We’re now into the seats that don’t come with the indoor amenities and they’re still $40K for the first year.


I don’t know how people do it I mean when I was a kid, a blue collar dad could take his kids to the game, buy them a pennant or trinket. Buy them some dogs too and maybe get himself a couple of beers and still be able to afford it.

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I formerly had 8 chair seats on row 6 in the SEZ center section for over 30 years (season ticket holders and tailgaters for 37 years). Wonderful seats.

We were basically disenfranchised. It would have cost us the same amount for 2 seats in the rooftop terrace area (above the suites & club area, right under the score board) as our former 8 seats and that did not include the upfront capital contribution.

They keep calling us with each new product offering. We are contemplating watching from the comfort of our home from now on. We will really miss the atmosphere, but it has become cost prohibitive.


We really like the seats we have. I’ve been up in the scholarship boxes (invited by friends) and it’s not really a game experience IMO.

I’ve been very involved in this project since Day 1. I previously sat in the SEZ row 12 right behind the goalposts. I loved the hidden secret of the convenient SEZ for 25 years. I had opportunities to buy from the ludicrously expensive Full Suite Level (all sold, requiring a $1 million lifetime giving commitment), Loge Boxes (all sold), Ledge Seats (about 90% sold) and then I bought 2 Club level seats, the cheapest level of the full amenity access. It’s painful, but I’m willing to reach deeper into my pocket to help build this new asset. Look, I get it, some previous SEZ seat holders (especially larger block of seat holders) are pissed off because they’re facing massive sticker shock or they think the University has to be “loyal” to them. But we’re in a P5 arms race now and the good old days of cheap seats are gone. Why? Primarily market demand. Bottom line is they’re still booking these deals and I support them for matching market demand pricing. The capital contribution is 100% tax deductible and it’s split into 3 separate payments across 3 years. They don’t reveal the next level of seat capital contributions until they’ve sold most of the previous level seats. That’s good economic policy trying to match top dollar of the interested buyer, and they still have a steady supply of them.


I still don’t understand the dynamic though. In the long run, doesn’t it get to a point where no one can afford any seat? Or does the market somehow understand that? I really don’t understand macro/microeconomics so, I posit this question with a curiosity to learn.

Having said that, I’ve spent my entire time in Utah enjoying games at home on TV and especially with high-def TV. Seems to be a wonderful experience to observe everything without having to deal with all the realities of driving parking getting home etc… Luxury boxes always seem removed from the event, but people seem to love that experience as well.
So with that, I want to thank you for investing in the University, the team, and contributing to the environment that I get to enjoy on TV. Because it really is spectacular. A few times I’ve gone to a live game it’s always been just a great experience. But I would not be inclined to spend tens of thousands.

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I don’t disagree with your view. My perspective is rooted in the realization that there are no 8-seat blocks available anywhere in the stadium other than at 4 to 8 or more times the price of my present contribution. Over the years, I have supported the U athletics to the tone of several hundreds of thousands dollars. Not to mention that we have nine degrees from the U between my wife and I and our five children.

My only problem is that there is a tone in your comments that not stepping up to a price tag that is well above what a now nearly-retired person on a fixed income can afford is playing a disloyal-to-the-U card. I didn’t ask for loyalty from the U, I was just disappointed that the U didn’t have any realistic options for us or several other multi-seat, longtime ticket holders.


Here’s the problem, the U doesn’t care about fans.

They care about money.

They should at least admit they care about money instead of acting like they appreciate the fans.

Most of the seats they’re selling are going to corporations, the same thing that’s happened with the Jazz.

I don’t think anyone who has been a long time season ticket holder expected special treatment, they expected honesty. We all knew what they’re were doing, but the U doesn’t want to admit they don’t care.

36 seasons, many with a terrible product.

The least they could do is be honest, but that’s something they struggle with and have for years.


And us other commoners appreciate it.


I share your PTSD on decades of crappy products on the field. But that’s where the new arms race comes in. How do you expect the team to consistently compete at this new level of competition without the amenities? They’ve begun to bring in top tier games, so somebody’s gotta pay the freight. Help me understand how they’ve been dishonest to you? I’ve been receiving the same information and have never once thought they have been dishonest.


They haven’t released the top bench seat pricing yet. How do you know it’s 4X more expensive than your previous row 6 seats?

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There really is much less romance and fun in intercollegiate athletics now. The athletics departments and their leadership are more mercenary than ever before. It’s sad but that’s the reality.

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One thing I left out of my original post: There will be no improvements in the facility anywhere other than the KGPZ. That means the concourse at halftime will still be a shoulder to shoulder mess and the line thru the men’s room will still take about half a quarter.

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It is sad too that live collegiate sports is becoming out of reach for most people.

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We were offered corner-fill-in bench seating in the upper deck (you know the kinds of seats you get at visitor’s stadiums for anywhere from $75 to $100 a pop). But when you have had (and paid handsomely for) chair seats for 37 years, this old body cannot deal with bench seating without paying a physical toll.

Please tell me how many of the fans presently in non-SEZ chair seats who are willing and able to continue paying for those chair seats, would gladly give them up to move to to upper-deck, corner, bench seating.


It is kind of unfortunate that long time loyal season ticket holders are being displaced. Sadly this is the state of the world of sports these days and it is not something unique to Utah. I worked for a bunch of years in the ticketing business and believe me the sentiment that ordinary folks are being priced out is commonplace across multiple sports in multiple locations. I have heard the same type of complaints from NHL fans, NFL fans, CFL fans, etc. and that was prior to moving to Utah 14 years ago. Sadly if you are a believer in and supporter of the free market dictating the price of goods and services then this is eventually what happens.

I have posted before that I know of many local tech companies who have long wanted to get access to tickets of any kind for Utah Football and preferably premium type tickets to help with enticing high end employees, vendors, and customers to do business with them. Until now those options have not been available. If a lowly tech employee like me is aware of some demand then it is not surprising that there is a large demand for these ticket options.

I am in the same boat as others in that eventually I will get priced out of my NE corner seat at RES. So far it seems like there are plenty of folks lined up to take my spot. I don’t necessarily like it but that is the state of the world of sports today.

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Sadly eventually the commoners will be priced out of the Guardsman tailgate lot as well. :frowning:

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