Top Story, Athletics

BC Athletics Turns Down Potential Fenway Game vs. UConn

Boston College football’s chance for redemption under the bright lights of Fenway Park will have to wait at least one more season.

On Thursday evening, The Boston Globe’s Bob Hohler reported that Director of Athletics Brad Bates had turned down a suggestion from Fenway Sports Management to host a game at the beloved home of the Boston Red Sox on Nov. 19 against the University of Connecticut.

Hohler, whose investigative article regarding the state of BC Athletics made waves in the University community a few weeks ago, stated that this would be a reversed experience to last year’s Shamrock Series game against Notre Dame. The Eagles were forced to dress back on the Heights and only received the ACC-standard 5,000 tickets out of 38,686 total. They also suffered the indignity of having “NOTRE DAME” and “FIGHTING IRISH” painted over both end zones. This time, BC would have been the host and would receive the according pomp and circumstance.

Bates, however, reaffirmed his stance: BC wants to play at least six games every year at Alumni Stadium. Given that the Eagles will take on Georgia Tech in Dublin, Ireland as a home game on Sept. 3, a game at Fenway would take away another opportunity for BC fans to see their team in Chestnut Hill. In addition, fans were put off by Fenway’s poor sight lines, a lack of tailgating, and the exorbitant prices given the stadium holds about 5,000 fewer fans.

“Boston College often receives requests to play home games at venues ranging from Gillette Stadium to Fenway Park,’’ Bates told the Globe. “We have consistently stated that we will consider the possibility only if it is more beneficial for our team, students, and fans, and only during those years in which we still have at least six games in Alumni Stadium. As a result, playing at Fenway Park during the 2016 season was never an option.’’

Fenway Sports Management cannot actually offer BC a spot at Fenway. Yet it appears likely that an offer was on the table, given that Fenway Sports Management is owned by Red Sox president Sam Kennedy, and based on his views of last year’s game against Notre Dame.

“Given the positive feedback we received on last November’s Shamrock Series, the Red Sox would love to see a return of BC football to Fenway Park in the near future,’’ Kennedy told the Globe. “We have extended the invitation for BC to return whenever it works for their schedule.’’

Additionally, Hohler has reported that BC is currently struggling to sell tickets to BC’s game in Dublin. According to several spokesmen for the Aer Lingus College Football Classic, BC projected to sell 10,000 tickets but has only sold around 5,000, fewer than the 6,400 bought by the Yellow Jackets faithful. He did concede, however, that BC is closing the gap on Georgia Tech and both schools’ fans will likely purchase 7,500 seats each before they become available to the European public on April 6.

Featured Image by Daniella Fasciano / Heights Senior Staff

March 25, 2016

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