The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Saturday February 4th

Short of the prize

The Carolina Athletic Association should do better to publicize the distribution process, while students should realize that it's a gamble.

A number of students recently have been vocal in their complaints about the ticket distribution process for UNC sporting events - and it's only right that they should be.

Many students waited for several hours this Saturday, and on many other Saturdays in the past, only to receive no tickets. They're understandably unhappy about getting up early and having nothing to show for it.

There have been calls for the Carolina Athletic Association, the group that runs distribution, to do a better job, both in determining the specific number of tickets it will be able to give out and in clarifying the distribution process.

The CAA should listen to the criticism.

In doing so, the organization could clear up common misconceptions. After all, there is a method to the madness that is ticket distribution.

To begin with, students get about 6,000 tickets for almost all conference games and about 4,000 tickets for all nonconference games. Then, blocks for the marching band, Carolina Fever, CAA and Ceiling Fan ticket-holders are taken out of the general pool. The remaining tickets then are distributed by way of the familiar bracelet system.

It would be helpful if the CAA made the details of the process more well-known. Also, since the group places the winning lottery number on its Web site, perhaps it also could publish a reasonable estimate regarding the number of tickets that will be available.

Thankfully, CAA President Lindsay Strunk has said the organization is trying to come up with exact numbers for future distributions.

"We want the student body to be informed and not left in the dark," she said.

Granted, students who decide to wait in line for tickets need to keep in mind that they are taking a gamble at a certain point. On any given Saturday, there are major variables in place, such as the number of bracelet-wearers who oversleep or who have only a single UNC ONE Card to present.

Those are risks students will have to accept. But at least with ticket estimates, they'll have a better idea of what that risk is.

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