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  • Ian Livingston Brooking

Coastal softball to charge admission, what other sports will follow suit?

When the 2018 Coastal Carolina Softball schedule was released on Dec. 14, 2017, there was another surprising announcement: softball will be charging admission for all home games.

The Chanticleers open their 2018 season hosting three tournaments, starting with the Kickin’ Chicken Classic that begins on Friday, Feb. 9 when Coastal takes on Iowa State at 5 p.m.

The cost for a ticket of a tournament game that Coastal is the host of will be $10 per person, per day while single games and doubleheaders will be $5 per person, per day. All seating will be general admission and will include the ability to view games from the first base line.

As per Coastal Carolina University Athletics gameday policies, a Clear Bag Policy for all ticketed events will be enforced. Along with numerous institutions around the country, the state of South Carolina and professional sports around the world, this new policy will limit the size and style of bags carried into ticketed venues.

Baseball, football and men’s and women’s basketball are the four Coastal Carolina sports that charge for admission to athletic events. While it wasn’t stated in the release by GoCCUSports, Coastal Carolina students will be able to claim free tickets for softball games in the same way that they would do for any football, baseball or basketball event.

While some have no problem with the admission charges for games, others are asking when will other sports follow suit, if at all?

Softball has been a very successful program with five straight winning seasons and a 2012 NCAA Tournament appearance. The men’s soccer team and volleyball have also been very successful, making numerous NCAA Tournament appearances and winning conference championship titles. The only difference between those three is that softball now will be charging.

Whether it is Kentucky basketball or a Division III lacrosse team, athletics at any university brings in an incredible amount of money. And if those programs are successful year in and year out, the more money they bring in.

Does the success of an athletic program lead an athletic department to charge for admission in order to raise money for respective programs and make their university more enticing for recruits?

On Nov. 18, 2015, an architect was selected to design the blueprints for a new soccer complex that will cost $5 million and, while no real progress has been made since then, one can assume that once that timeline is set, there might be an admission fee charge in order to help pay for that new complex.

While there is no doubt that fans will continue to support the softball team, it will be interesting to see how fans, both home and away, react to this new change.

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