Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Sports fans paying it forward on legal Web site

Jim Williams, The Examiner
Nov 14, 2006 5:00 AM (2 hrs 10 mins ago)
Current rank: # 2 of 5,782 articles

BALTIMORE - So you are now convinced that Maryland is going to a BCS bowl and the Ravens will be in the Super Bowl, and you want tickets. But how do you get them without selling the farm?

TicketReserve.com is a fascinating new concept that allow sports fans to buy tickets at face value for investing some cash in their favorite team’s chances of making it to a big-time bowl game or the Super Bowl. The concept is based on the stock market, with each team assigned a value that either goes up or down depending on its success.

TicketReserve.com is legal, well-controlled, supervised and has impressed so many top bowls and other key sporting event managers that it has won the support of the BCS bowls, as well as a number of other bowls. They also have the support of the NFL and NBA, among others.

For $10 per ticket, a Maryland fan can buy a FanForward pass, assuring them the chance to purchase up to eight tickets at face value should Maryland make the BCS or any of the top-tier bowl games. If they don’t, you are out your $10-per-ticket investment. Right now, the Ravens are at $100 per ticket and growing fast for Super Bowl seats.

Just like the stock market, the “buy-in” goes up the better the team plays. For example, a fan of Ohio State bought the FanForward at the opening price of $156. The Buckeyes’ victory over Texas on Sept. 9 pushed prices over $600. The most recent check saw the buy-in at $595.

For the fan who bought the right to purchase the tickets at $156 over face value, he can either choose to do that or make a profit like the stock market and sell his FanForward to someone else on the Web site. Again, all perfectly legal and very much fan-controlled.

Jim Williams is a seven-time Emmy Award-winning TV producer, director and writer. E-mail him at jwilliamsexaminer@gmail.com.

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