Colleges Eye Fans With Dreams of Owning Seats

(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
At first glance, alumni of the University of California-Berkeley and the University of Kansas might think their respective colleges have entered the mortgage business with words such as "financing," "interest" and "annual payment" appearing in fundraising letters. And they'll be right.

Fans of the Cal Bears and Kansas Jayhawks can buy individual seats in the schools' football stadiums, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal Tuesday. Supporters can buy the seats and pay down a mortgage-like agreement with interest over decades-long periods.

For Cal, selling its seats will help the football team cross the goal line in a 25-year-long fundraising campaign to overhaul Berkeley's Memorial Stadium. Up until now, the program has raised $125 million. If it sells 3,000 seats, the team estimates it will pass its goal of $300 million.

"Without this program, I don't see any way we could secure the funds," Cal associate athletic director David Rosselli told the Journal. "We needed a different approach."

For KU, the Jayhawks plan to add a 3,000-seat luxury-club level to its Memorial Stadium in Lawrence.

The terms of these seat mortgages depend on the quality of the seat. At Cal, the best seat will cost $220,000 over a 50-year period; the cheapest seat sells for $40,000 for a 40-year term. Club tickets for 30 years of Kansas games costs $105,000.

  • Alex Sundby

    Alex Sundby is an associate news editor for