Glass hopes students fill Memorial Stadium for memorable Saturday #iufb

Fred Glass met his wife at an Indiana football game. He remembers a childhood spent listening to his father’s stories of watching Old Oaken Bucket games in the freezing bleachers and, as IU prepares to host No. 1 Ohio State on Saturday, he hopes to make the Memorial Stadium experience a memorable one for students this weekend.

The IU athletic director appeared on coach Kevin Wilson’s weekly radio show Wednesday to discuss his department’s plan to offer students $10 tickets from the school’s general public allotment. With Indiana expecting its first sellout since the Michigan game in 2010, Glass is hoping the discounted tickets encourage more IU students to attend the game and create memories around the football program’s best start in 25 years.

“We really want students to have an experience here,” Glass said. “We want this to be one of those games where (students can say), ‘I remember when Ohio State came in here and was undefeated, the No. 1 team in the country, defending national champions and it was a great game.'”

Glass indicated that IU has spent weeks, if not months, preparing for its biggest gate of the year. The department has taken extra measures to further coordinate traffic and parking, while hiring extra ticket scanners and additional gameday personnel.

When the team returned home from its 31-24 win at Wake Forest on Saturday, Glass said the IU athletic department had approximately 4,000 tickets remaining to sell. Rather than market them all to the general public for $65 apiece, Glass said his department wanted to focus on ways to get more IU students into the stadium.

Discouting the tickets became the primary solution, and as IU prepares to face a No. 1 ranked team in Bloomington for the first time since 1998, Glass hopes a capacity crowd of 52,929 can help make Saturday a memorable occasion.

“Kevin (Wilson) says this all the time that Indiana University is an excellent place,” Glass said. “Excellent academics, excellent internationally, excellent in research. We should have an excellent football team. That’s what he’s said about building, and I think he’s done a fabulous job of leading this program. It’s been a pretty big battleship to turn and we knew it would take some time and some repetition, but I think we’re really seeing the payoff of getting with the program, keeping some guys together, letting it build on itself and putting us in a position to have a year that could really be something special.”

12 comments

  1. Note how Glass (first quote) in recounting how students will remember this game years from now (ha!) says nothing about IU winning. Just that an undefeated no. 1-ranked team came to town. Smart man. Also, the o$u game in ’12 wasn’t a sellout? That surprises me. Had to be close. 48, 49k.

  2. I sure hope they can find a way to fill the stadium. I don’t recall ever seeing it full since they expanded in the north end zone. Heck, I am not sure if I have seen it full since I was in school when they actually went to bowl games. Let’s Go Hoosiers! Give them a fight!

  3. You’re right hoosiercow, and it’s going to take IU going to another bowl game before it will be sold out again. Young people today have too many other entertainment options, like binge drinking at a tailgate party while playing corn-hole. I think a very healthy percentage of the fans in the seats will be OSU fans on Saturday.

    Glass said, “It’s been a pretty big battleship to turn and we knew it would take some time and some repetition, but I think we’re really seeing the payoff of getting with the program.” That part about turning “a pretty big battleship” is just self serving B.S.. Turning that battleship takes so long because Glass and his bosses chose not to spend the money necessary to hire a proven head coach with the experience and reputation necessary to turn the football program around faster. I think Wilson has a chance to become a really good head coach, but Glass needs needs to stop talking nonsense and admit that it was all about the money, the administrations’ lack of confidence about football, and IU’s aversion to financial risk. It certainly was not about the size of the battleship. And let’s just hope that after Wilson produces IU’s first winning season in many years, some other “excellent place” with “excellent academics” does not lure him away with money that Glass is unable or unwilling to spend. If that happens, Glass will never be able to wipe all the egg off his face. A CEO I once worked for used to say, “ideally, no employee should ever leave this company unless we want them to leave. Voluntary separation is an indication that we’re doing something wrong.”

  4. Lol. The old canard that the only reason we don’t have a great coach is because we are too cheap to get one. Name one amazing coach that got paid top dollar to turn around a bottom feeding program with no tradition of winning in its history…..tap tap tap tap.

    Po, arguing with you is like playing tennis against a wall. Your obsessive dismissal of Wilson is Harvard-esque, without the humor.

  5. Texas offered all the money they could find, which is a damn sight more than Alabama could ever come up with, and Saban never packed his bags. Red McCombs would have bought Alabama for him.

  6. Podunker,

    That’s another quality rant from you, but:

    A. The game will sell out today, so it’s not going to take a bowl game to sell the place out.

    B. OSU always travels well, but they returned close to 1000 tickets to IU.

    C. If you are this miserable over a 4-0 start, why even follow football? IU football is a monumentally tough job. This isn’t a video game. You can talk about throwing around money all you want, but it’s not always that simple.

  7. IU football has always been hampered by a lack of money while basketball pays much more for their coach and always has. I don’t think more money would have brought in a big name coach with IU’s record and facilities at the time. I think Wilson was a great hire but he has had to learn how to be a head coach and it has taken time to upgrade the recruiting [another area basketball spends much more $]. As an offensive coordinator coming in he didn’t have a ready made staff of proven coaches and it took time to see who needed to be let go.

    I think now we have the right coaches and are getting the right players into the program. Just listen to Coach and before the season he talked about this group being the first group that had the right approach to the game although a few Indy kids couldn’t seem to stay on board [I am still really disappointed about the group that committed to IU together aren’t around or currently suspended] so it has been a long time to turn things around. I sure hope the younger players learn the lesson the a couple of older players didn’t learn as they will become a great group once they get enough experience in. Contrary to a few posters, young players can’t just flip a switch and learn everything they need to on the field.

  8. Double Down, I don’t have the time to list all the schools that paid big bucks (in relative terms) for a proven head coach to turn their football or basketball program around, and build a winning tradition. Surely you jest! And what part of “I think Wilson has a chance to become a really good head coach” didn’t you understand? That’s hardly “obsessive dismissal of Wilson.” If you’re going to criticize my opinions, at least pay attention. If you had been, you’d know that I don’t blame Wilson, I blame IU’s lack of a winning “tradition” on IU’s administration (i.e., trustees and Presidents) over the last four or five decades (and some bad luck). The fact is that when he was hired, Wilson was the lowest or second lowest head football coach in the Big Ten. I think he still is!

    Jimmy0, you are right about the sellout, and I was wrong. I admit to being pleasantly surprised that the game is a sellout with OSU returning 1,000 tickets. But I’m still curious to see what percentage of the fans in the stadium will be cheering for OSU. I’m not at all “miserable” being 4 – 0. I’m delighted, but not ready to drink the cool aide just yet. I’ve seen this movie before and I think my skepticism is typical of most IU fans, especially in my age group. We have seen this movie before, and yet we still follow IU football. Even though you misinterpret my comments, it’s good to see a few Hoosier fans defending “The Rock.”

  9. v13, IU’s football facilities were well on their way to being outstanding when Wilson was hired, and they’ve gotten better since. That was not an issue at the time. And the “money was not the issue” argument is sour grapes. Money was a HUGE issue when Glass began his search to replace Lynch. There were articles written about it at the time. IU had just paid or was still paying severance to its former basketball coach (who they fired for cause) and also to Lynch. IU was still paying for both of those hiring mistakes! No experienced, proven head coach was going to accept the IU football job for what IU was offering to pay at that time. Those types of candidates all knew that better, higher paying opportunities would become available to them. Isn’t it interesting that IU had no hesitation making Crean one of the highest paid college BB coaches in the country and gave him a huge guaranteed contract, but offered Wilson a compensation package that makes him the lowest or second lowest paid football coach in the conference? That’s all you need to know about IU’s priorities! With the money IU was offering to pay a football coach, they had no chance to attract a proven head coach. Hey, it might turn out to be a brilliant move by Glass. I really hope it does. I hope Wilson retires as IU’s head coach ten years from now with IU being his only head coaching job. That would be great! It’s just that I thought the line Glass used about IU being like a battleship that is slow to turn was/is total self-serving B.S.

  10. It’s hard not to notice that so many people start off decrying the rebuilding efforts of IU football without, at some point, referring to the fact that IU is, arguably, the worst program in the history of the game. Well, which is it? Is it just another program that needs just the right nudge or is it a grease fire that will take a while to turn around?

    Personally, I’m in the pro Kevin Wilson camp. We have had an increasing number of actual D1 players signing with the program. I really, really hate to say this but, when that happens at pretty much any program, you end up with a few bad actors. Feel free to show me an example where I am mistaken but it is pretty consistent in college football. Honestly, I think we’re doing fine on that. If you don’t believe me get a subscription to the hometown paper of any SEC team and check out the tiny, one paragraph articles of the player public miscues that barely get a mention.

    No, I think ‘ol CKW is doing just fine. Contrary to other comments, there just aren’t any Nick Sabans walking around waiting for a terrible program to offer the right money.

  11. Chet, like you I think we have the right coach on board with Wilson at the helm. Putting in a new offense and needing to put together a coaching staff isn;t as easy as some think it is and yes it takes a while to turn a program like IU around. I like where the program is now and with the incoming recruits the team is ready to start moving up in the B1G heirarchy.

    It would be great to pull off major upset this afternoon.

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