Hazell has visited with Boilermaker fans—from seeing students in the dorms to visiting with alumni groups throughout the country—all with the goal of filling "The Furnace," Ross-Ade Stadium. His efforts are paying off.
Purdue's public season-ticket sales have already surpassed the total from last year, the school announced on Monday. 23,100 season tickets have been sold—far beyond the total of 20,880 from last year. 5,406 new season tickets have been sold. Student season-ticket sales are ahead of pace from one year ago, too, another positive sign for the program.
In an interview with the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel on Monday—before these figures were made public—Hazell detailed his hope to fill Ross-Ade Stadium.
"We need it desperately," said Hazell. "If you watch the Big Ten Network and you see Penn State with its 110,000 fans, and you see Ohio State and its 105,000, and Michigan and its 110,000-plus. Turn on our game and it's 75 percent full or 65 percent full. Why? Why is it like that? There's no reason for that, especially with our venue being considerably smaller than those I just mentioned. Ours is 62,500. Why can't we be hanging off the rafters?"