The Top 25 preseason college football polls are out, and once again the University of Alabama is near the top of the list. This season the Crimson Tide rank second, just behind Florida State who won the National Title last season. The Seminoles bring back Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Jameis Winston, on top of several key parts of that championship squad. But when it comes to ticket prices, Alabama is the team with the top spot.
Before the season starts, fans have the opportunity to reserve postseason tickets at face value through the site TeamTix. At this point Alabama has the most expensive ticket with $170 the cheapest ticket fans can get. The next most expensive ticket is Florida State at $117, and no other team has a minimum above $100.
Believe it or not, that is actually way cheaper than it would’ve cost to get Alabama postseason tickets last season. Alabama football tickets are down 39 percent from the $280 reserve price they cost last year because of the new playoff format. Last season if Alabama had finished second in the rankings, they would have been in the National Championship Game. Now if the Crimson Tide finish second, they will still have to win one more game in order to play for the National Championship, decreasing the odds of appearing in the game.
This year is the first year of the NCAA playoff system for college football, with the top four teams being selected by a committee, and playing in single elimination games to determine the National Champion.
Along with being the favorite, by the ticket market, to play for a national title, home games on the Alabama football schedule have the fourth most expensive average price on the secondary market, according to TiqIQ.
Last season Alabama was looking for their third straight national title, before a last-second loss to Auburn ruined their chances. They were undefeated going into the annual Iron Bowl against their SEC rivals, but Auburn returned a missed field goal for the winning score. Alabama settled for the Sugar Bowl, where they were once again shocked. This time by freshman quarterback Trevor Knight and the Oklahoma Sooners.
But even with that disappointing season, the Crimson Tide is once again favorites in the SEC. They’ve had three straight Number One recruiting classes to restock their defense and offensive line, the two staples of the program. Not to mention they have TJ Yeldon returning at running back, a season after rushing for 1,235 yards with a 6.0 yards per carry average.
Even at quarterback Alabama is in good shape despite losing AJ McCarron. McCarron has been the starter for the team the last three seasons, but left to the NFL following his senior season. Head coach Nick Saban is hoping to replace him with Florida State transfer Jacob Coker, who has gotten good reviews so far in the offseason.
Alabama has the tools to once again finish the season as national champions. It would be a disappointment for the team to finish out of the first BCS playoffs with the recruiting classes they’ve managed to put together. That’s why Alabama tickets remain some the most expensive in all of college football, and have the highest reserve prices to see them play for a national title.