The disappearance of the BCS format and the creation of the College Football Playoff has led teams to focus on strength of schedule. In previous years, we’ve seen the selection committee use big non-conference wins to decide between two very similar teams. As a result, we as fans benefit. Teams are required to load weeks 1 and 2 with integral power-5 match-ups with hopes it sets them apart later in the season. It’s official, fans can now declare opening weekend as the biggest weekend in football stuffed with some of the best match-ups that make it worth the agonizing 8-month wait. This year, the fans have spoken, opening weekend’s most in-demand game is Michigan v. Notre Dame.
TicketCity looked at the numbers and one thing is clear: The rivalry between Michigan v. Notre Dame is back and fans want in to the reunion for an average ticket price of $749. That’s nearly three times more than the second most in-demand game between LSU v. Miami and $200 more expensive than the last time the two competed back in 2014. Here is the data from the previous three match-ups compared with this year’s match-up in South Bend. Notre Dame at home vs. Michigan is the most-coveted and in-demand tickets for opening weekend, and maybe even the entire season.
|Year||Average Order Value||Average Ticket Price||Venue|
|2018||$1,891.56||$749.90||Notre Dame Stadium|
|2014||$1,760.06||$565.76||Notre Dame Stadium|
|2012||$1,414.65||$397.01||Notre Dame Stadium|
These two teams also boast the highest average ticket prices in the country. Here’s the Top-10 most in-demand college football teams heading into the 2018 season as well as the average ticket price for their season ahead:
|Top 10 Most In-Demand College Football Teams (2018)||Average Ticket Price|
|Notre Dame||$ 277.00|
|Penn State||$ 226.00|
|Mississippi State||$ 168.00|
|Michigan State||$ 166.00|
The AP Top 25’s choice for #1, Alabama might be re-claiming their rightful place at the top, but fans are less interested with their average ticket price making them the 10th most in-demand game of 2018’s opening weekend. But, this provides fans who haven’t made the annual SEC Championship and National Championship trips a chance to see the Tide at a discounted rate. Alabama opens up their season in Orlando, Florida against the Louisville Cardinals.