If you have tickets to Saturday's NC State/Ohio State football game, you are a very fortunate person. In fact, you're probably sitting on a fortune. Thanks to the dedication, fanaticism, and apparently deep pockets of Ohio State fans, tickets for this football game are in higher demand than any NC State home game in recent memory. And where there is demand, there is profit to be had.
There is no question that Saturday offers an opportunity for much financial gain for many ticket holders. However, for the sake of the team Wolfpackers love, it is critical that the parking lots be full of "First in Flight" license plates and not "Pioneers of Aviation" Ohio knock-offs.
North Carolina state law forbids tickets to be sold for greater than three dollars face value. No matter, for all intents and purposes, these tickets are all being sold in Ohio. There has never been so high a market for tickets to an NC State football game, even on the occasions when the motor homes from Tallahassee invade the fairgrounds.
Ohio State fans are proving that they will pay top dollar to get into Carter-Finley, even if they are blissfully oblivious to the new obstructed view or Erector Set temporary bleacher seating they are likely paying top dollar for. After trying them out in the season opener, many ticket holders might not be so disappointed to not relive the knee-in-back, drink-spilling, watch-your-step discomfort that is Non-Lifetime-Rights Wolfpack Football.
Sure NC State fans want to see the game, but if it's going to be on television and there is a cool $400 to be had, well, why not sell your seats? One trip to Ebay and that useless "howel towel" you've been unable to throw away can be unloaded for a hefty profit, as long as you throw in two "free" Ohio St. tickets, and, oh yeah, that burdensome soul of yours, too.
It's not like you'd be selling out, per se. Diluting the team's home field advantage for your own personal selfish and greedy motives shouldn't necessarily be so broadly pigeonholed, right? No, it could just be a case of run-of-the-mill backstabbing, colonial turncoating, or garden variety spineless treason. Actually, such free enterprise is much, much worse than just being a "sell-out." Even if the profits from selling the tickets will be put towards a downpayment on some decent lifetime rights seating, being in league with people from Ohio is an activity that has never worked out well in the end for anyone.
But the Ohioans approach, and they approach fast. You have to understand why they stand by their team so ardently, though. Ohioans have no other competitive sports team to represent the great tourist mecca that is their state but the Buckeyes. This is where the Bengals, Browns, Indians, and yes, the Crew, all reside. What else do Ohioans have but Ohio State football? Such is the fuel for their fanaticism.
NC State fans claim to be passionate about their school, and believe that they have a reputation for supporting the team through thick and thin, but those values will be tested like never before this weekend. Nevermind that Saturday the Pack will have a chance for revenge against a perennial Big Ten-leven power and a chance to measure itself against top competition under a national spotlight. The true test will be of the constitution, loyalty, and degree of financial desperation of NC State ticket holders.
There may be a sea of red in Carter-Finley Saturday, but if Wolfpackers don't resist the handfuls of cash being thrown their way by Buckeye supporters, that sea of red could be fool's red. The stands might instead be filled with nothing but apparel and ponchos that are the shade of red that is somewhat darker and maybe closer to a shade of garnet, perhaps even maroon Ohio State red! Wolfpacker fans must steel their pride and resist the bribing Buckeyes.