Boston College Plans “Sweeping Changes” to Football Gameday Experience


Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Wednesday marked the day that season tickets for the 2013 football campaign officially went on sale, but that was perhaps the least notable development.

Athletic Director Brad Bates and Boston College Athletics also announced that after several “town hall” meetings with ticketholders and fans, the school will make considerable efforts to fix the gameday experience for those visiting Chestnut Hill on Fall Saturdays.

Bates had the following to say in a statement released by Boston College on Wednesday afternoon:

"“We have been listening, and the message from our fans is clear. We need to improve in some key areas. Our message back to our fans is that we will strive to present the best gameday experience in the ACC. The input we heard most centered around parking, hospitality options, regulation enforcement, customer service and in-game entertainment. Our goal is to do the best we can to improve in these areas and others as quickly as possible, then continue to find new ways to enhance the gameday experience.”"

The remainder of the release is short on specifics, but does indicate that campus will be open to visitors sooner on football gamedays and it also implies that other restrictions from prior seasons may be slightly relaxed.

One might think this focuses mainly on tailgating, an issue about which many Boston College fans have expressed concerns for the last several years. Some have described an experience that was as dysfunctional as it was unfriendly to game attendees and others. We on the outside will need to gather more specifics over the next five months, but that Bates and the Athletics Department have taken this step signals a definitive change in policy from the previous administration, and that at the very least, an effort is being made to accommodate those who give their hard-earned money to enjoy watching Boston College sports.

Any plans to improve the gameday experience in football are welcome, but one might also hope that it is just the beginning. This new fan-friendly tack must expand to all of the revenue sports on campus, even the ones that don’t include tailgating.

Although we do not have concrete policy changes to dissect, these are encouraging developments and a sign that BC is willing to change its gameday operations for the better.