According to the Daily Texan, the University of Texas student newspaper, the school is considering selling alcohol at Texas Longhorns football, basketball, and baseball games. If this does indeed come to pass, the prograam would be the third member of the Big 12 conference to do so, joining the Iowa State Cyclones and the West Virginia Mountaineers.
The NCAA currently does not regulate alcohol sales at regular season sporting events, and there are about 20 major college venues which currently allow it–even more that allow alcohol sales in luxury suites.
Longhorn athletic director Deloss Dodds told the student paper that this is an issue that’s been discussed for several years, adding that he has mixed feelings about the possiblity:
If we ever did it, we’d probably start with baseball. There’s something about it that doesn’t quite feel right, but there’s people telling me that it might be safer to serve it than not serve it. It’s an issue. I guarantee you we talk about it at almost every other staff meeting.
Though I am probably in the minority, I agree with Dodds that something doesn’t feel quite right about it. College football fans are so passionate about their teams that adding alcohol into the equation doesn’t seem like a good idea. Furthermore, one of the things that separates collegiate games from professional games is that college games tend to foster more of a family atmosphere, which could be in jeopardy if more people were drinking. It’s hard to take your seven year old son to a game when you know there will be even more drunk fans all around yelling obscenities and picking fights.
Of course, we all know that fans tend to drink at the events anyway, whether it’s prohibited or not, so would this really be a big change? It’s hard to say. Something else to consider is that it may be easier to regulate fan behavior if drinking was allowed, in that there could be separate sections set up for the drinkers and non-drinkers.
Regardless, I feel that it’s just asking for trouble. Again, college football fans have arguably the craziest and most passionate fan bases in the country, and emotions tend to run deep enough without adding alcohol to the mix.
What do you think?