Thousands of UConn students flooded into Gampel Pavilion on April 8 to watch the Men’s Basketball Championship game against Purdue. 

Students needed to claim their tickets online on April 7 to attend the Gampel Pavilion watch party. With the high demand for these tickets, many students who could not obtain tickets to attend the watch party resulted in purchasing tickets from other UConn students. 

An anonymous first year ACES student spent their Sunday night in the ticket queue, only to find out that the tickets were sold out. 

“I was in the queue to get a ticket at 9:30pm, 30 minutes before tickets went on sale; Once I got into the queue it was so slow that the tickets sold out by the time it was over,” the anonymous student said. “Immediately after that I went on the UConn 2027 story to ask for a ticket and everyone was selling them for insane amounts, some even more than $100.”

Students have increasingly relied on the UConn Class of 2027 Snapchat story as a last resort to secure tickets. The Snapchat story is the known host for athletic ticket bidding, forcing students to spend large amounts of money on a ticket that is originally free. 

An anonymous first year education student was among the many students who bought a ticket from someone who posted on the UConn 2027 Snapchat story. They paid for a championship ticket, received it in their email, and were denied entry into Gampel after finding out that their ticket was already claimed. 

“I was denied admission because it was already claimed,” the anonymous student said. “I was really mad at myself for thinking that I was actually able to trust this person who I thought seemed really nice and I was also mad over the fact that people actually would do something like sell their tickets to multiple people to make more money when these tickets are supposed to be free.”

Students who sold their championship tickets had no intention of attending the watch party and used their ticket as an opportunity to make a profit. These students would sell their ticket to multiple individuals, making it a race to the watch party because the first person to use the ticket would leave those who were sold the same ticket to be denied entry.

Katharine Nolan, a freshman psychology major, who had a ticket from the student ticket portal and was still denied entry. 

“I pulled up both confirmation emails that had been addressed to me by name, and I pulled out my student ID for further proof, because the people getting denied around me had bought their ticket second hand, however the woman turned her nose up at me and said if the screen was red we weren’t allowed to enter,” Nolan said. “It was a really unfortunate situation, and what was even more disappointing was that there was no one willing to help no matter how hard I tried to explain that the ticket was mine, and that I had proof.”

Even with the confirmation emails, Nolan was unable to go inside Gampel and was perplexed by the situation.

“The assumption I am under is that the portal was giving out duplicate tickets, so two people were given the same ticket, because again, I personally gave no one else access to my ticket,” Nolan said. “I have heard people mention that the system may have been hacked, and while I know that some UConn students would probably go that far just to get a ticket, I’m not sure how easy a task like that would be, so I don’t know what my stance on that is.”

Nolan wasn’t the only student denied access into the Gampel that night, many students who held legitimate tickets were unable to get in because the pavilion reached its capacity.

Taylor Murphy, a sophomore communications major, was one of the hundreds of students who were stuck outside of the pavilion all night and had a legitimate ticket. She arrived at Gampel Pavilion at 8:20 p.m. only to be told that it was full.

“My frustration was specifically that I had a completely unscanned, legitimate ticket that due to ignorance to the hundreds of scammed tickets that they let in beforehand, was unable to be used,” Murphy said. “The police were telling students that it was the schools fault and that hundreds of tickets went unscanned, leaving those with legit tickets to still lose out.”

Murphy wasn’t the only individual who encountered police officers that night and found their commentary to be abnormally harsh. Allany Ayala, a junior English major, was also greeted with unsympathetic police officers who expressed their opinions to her in a manner she deemed to be unprofessional. 

“The cops and security were being extremely unprofessional saying we should’ve gotten tickets (which we did) and that it was our fault for missing the watch party,” Ayala said. “Security told us to go home to enjoy the game, but my boyfriend traveled all the way from the Avery Point campus which is an hour drive and by the time he got home the game would be over.”

Additionally, Ayala commented on how UConn regional campus students were also in attendance that night and expressed how some were denied entry even though they had tickets.

“No one takes regional campuses into account and it’s ridiculous,” Ayala said. “They’re valid UConn students who wasted valuable time and gas to enjoy a watch party they were locked out of.”

Between being scammed out of their tickets, being denied entry because the pavilion was full and the treatment from the staff working that night, many UConn students were very upset with the conclusion of their championship game experience.

Students gather outside of Gampel Pavilion after victory on April 8. Photo by Skyler Kim of the Daily Campus.

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