Pres Schill cuts deal with ASUO on ending $1.7M student fee payment to Ducks, students meeting at 4 today

2/2/2021: No details on the deal til 4PM today. Maybe some wealthy UO donor finally decided to start paying for the students, like he pays for the coaches raises? While UO’s students pay the Ducks $1.7M a year for “free” tickets, at Maryland the athletic department pays the students to go to the games via a scholarship lottery, if they stay til the 4th quarter.

From the ASUO student government to the UO Senate:

The ASUO has been in discussion with the University of Oregon administration over the athletics agreement through which students pay for their student tickets. This year’s ASUO administration decided that the use of I Fee funds to purchase tickets was unfair due to the price we were paying, and the way tickets are allocated and distributed, therefore, on Saturday, January 30, the ASUO Legislative branch voted to discontinue the current athletics agreement.

University of Oregon administration approached the ASUO yesterday about this decision, and late last night, President Michael Schill and Senate President Claire O’Connor negotiated a new proposal of a restructured system to secure student tickets to athletic events. If you would like to ask questions or hear more details, the ASUO will be having an open public forum from 4-6 pm and all students are welcome to come learn more and voice their opinions before the ASUO Senate votes on the proposal during an open meeting from 6-6:30 pm. Please consider using this opportunity to learn more and voice your opinion.

This is the link to the public forum: https://uoregon.zoom.us/j/8311573647

1/25/2021: ASUO committee votes to end $1.7M payments to Duck Athletic Cartel for “free” tickets

The final decision seems to be up to President Schill, and since he firmly believes and restated in the Senate 2 weeks ago that the Ducks should not be subsidized, ending this particular subsidy should be an easy call for him. Student attendance has been dropping for years – and many leave early to get on with the partying – and those who do care about big-time college sports can of course still buy tickets. Presumably Duck financial director Eric Roedl will heavily discount these or hire ringers, since they’ll need a section of excited looking student-types with painted faces to focus the TV cameras on.

Reporter Leo Baudhuin has the story in the Emerald:

ASUO’s Athletics and Contracts Finance Committee voted against renewing its athletics ticketing agreement at a Jan. 19 budget hearing. This means the student ticket subsidy will not be funded for the 2021-22 academic year, with the money reallocated to a handful of new programs that ACFC believes will more equitably serve the University of Oregon student body. 

The UO athletics department declined to speak with the Daily Emerald for this story.

According to the 2020-21 contract, ACFC and athletics had mutually agreed upon this markdown rate beginning with Fiscal Year 2016-17. For the 2020-21 fiscal year, ACFC was paying over $1.7 million in student fees for the ticketing contract. The agreement stood at 50% of market value prior to the 2016 deal.

This price allowed I-fee paying members to attend any Ducks sporting event with a student ID — with the exception of football and men’s basketball, which were run through a lottery system that students had to register for.

In place of the athletics contract, ACFC is allocating the $1.7 million to seven new programs: menstrual product accessibility in the EMU, a tiered textbook subsidy program for students with financial need, a basic needs coordinator who will help students apply to programs like SNAP, a student advocacy coordinator for ASUO’s peer-to-peer advocacy work, an across-the-board 20% wage increase for students employed at UO, an emergency housing subsidy fund and a redistribution of roughly $400,000 to other finance committees — which will allow ASUO to decrease or maintain the current I-fee for the 2021-22 fiscal year.

“The reality is not everyone gets a football ticket,” ACFC chair Annika Mayne said, “and a football ticket is not going to pay your rent or help you with legal trouble or increase your wage.” …

… From the hearing, ACFC’s budget proposal will go to the ASUO senate, Mayne said. Pending the senate’s approval, it will make its way to ASUO President Isaiah Boyd before going to UO President Michael Schill. Both Boyd and ASUO Senate President Claire O’Connor voiced their support for the plan during the public comment section of the budget hearing.

“There are some populations of students that I’m sure aren’t going to be happy about this,” said Laus. “But by and large, it’s a university, it’s not a sports team.” …

Here’s a past post on this issue:

June 2017: Duck athletic cartel’s Eric Roedl shake down UO students for another 40 large:

Screen Shot 2015-01-16 at 3.55.34 PM

Kenny Jacoby has the story in the Daily Emerald, here:

This year, athletics requested another 4-percent increase, even though prices for regular season-ticket holders are decreasing.

“Really the reason behind the 4-percent ask is that we’ve been frozen for so long and we’re trying to just catch up a little bit with the [incidental fee],” [the very well paid AAD Eric Roedl] said.

Dunn said each year Roedl and other athletic department officials “come to the table very frustrated that the conversation is the same.” Students want to pay less, but athletic department officials wants them to pay more, so the end result remains unchanged.

“They don’t think about how any sort of change in these fees or tuition will actually impact the students here on our campus,” Dunn said. “Asking students to pay more for their student athletic tickets in a year where tuition is supposed to go up almost 11 percent is a little ridiculous.”

In the end ASUO gave them only $10K, so now Roedl is threatening to take away the students tickets – or go directly to the TFAB, for a new student fee devoted solely to the athletic department.

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6 Responses to Pres Schill cuts deal with ASUO on ending $1.7M student fee payment to Ducks, students meeting at 4 today

  1. honest Uncle Bernie says:

    A solution: don’t go to the games. Better yet, a public student boycott of the Ducks. Think of the great national publicity for UO academics!

    Then: a student “tuition boycott.” Not for real – I still wanna get paid — just a national protest against both excessive bureaucracy AND slacker faculty.

    It would make for boffo box office!

    Much better than all that bullshit about that dumb law professor and all her idiot colleagues.

    • UO Matters says:

      Professor calls for a “a public student boycott of the Ducks”

      Bernie, I’m torn on this. On the one hand, why didn’t you run for Senate president? On the other hand, have you not read Gibbon?

      • honest Uncle Bernie says:

        My nephews tell me I’m no historian. I have to admit I last read Gibbon many years ago. Please explain what you have in mind with that allusion.

        Senate president? My nephews tell me I am no politician, just a blog commentator, at best. Spotlight averse! And taking on the Ducks. Look what happened to that econ guy at UO. They see he was somehow turned into the Manchurian professor –sorry if that is politically incorrect, one of my favorite students way back when was Manchurian — then they got him to run for Senate president. Twice!

  2. environmental necessity says:

    Why isn’t the AD required to reserve a section for students on account of their association with, well, this university? Who the F cares if Roedl et al whine?

    Given the importance of students in generating enthusiasm and ESPN coverage, at least for some sports, why would the AD want to exclude students? You think GameDay sets up shop outside Lillis if students can’t go to games (and most can’t buy tickets at market rates, except for last year)? Please.

    The idea the “profitable” AD can shakedown students in this way is disgusting. Especially since so many students do not care about athletics or do not care about the sports at issue in this shakedown. I say this as one who loves Oregon athletics and has my entire life.

    Make the AD live within the revenue they generate from tickets, donations, and licensing. And for the right to exist they should be required by the leaders of the university to provide X% of tickets to students for football and basketball, without taking money from the Women’s Center, the chess club, and other student groups.

    That this is at all an issue is really disheartening.

  3. Sports Fan says:

    Rob Mullens and co. need a new playbook beyond “squeeze the most profit possible out of the most passionate constituents.” It destroyed the football season ticket base, which clearly has not recovered.

  4. Payroll Guy says:

    They are just following the Business model that is sucking the life blood from the economy. For another great example of this model at work, just look to the administration and their compounding salaries. While undercutting and blaming the pillars that have created a reason for their job in the first place.

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