TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – As momentum builds around new coach Willie Taggart, and with a home schedule that features dates with Virginia Tech, Clemson and Florida, Florida State is putting the finishing touches on a new system that will provide recent FSU graduates with unprecedented flexibility in how they attend games at Doak Campbell Stadium this fall.
It’s called Torch – a mobile-only, custom season pass that guarantees a different seat inside the stadium while allowing recent grads to choose which games they attend at a more affordable rate than a traditional season ticket.
Torch is being sold in increments of five, 10 or 20 passes, with each pass granting one admission per game. For example, a five-pass holder could attend five games, bring his or herself and four friends to one game, or split them up across the season.
All FSU students who graduated in December of 2014 or later are eligible for Torch, but FSU Athletics is leaving open the possibility for future expansion.
“There’s a lot more flexibility,” said Chris Wilson, director of service and retention in the FSU ticket office. “And that’s the point of it: To have more flexibility while they’re enjoying Florida State football.”
The Torch program comes on the heels of the similar “Benchwarmer Pass” that debuted with FSU men’s basketball this season.
And it’s part of a wider trend across college and pro athletics that seems to be redefining the traditional season-ticket model.
Franchises in Major League Baseball, the NFL, NBA and NHL have all ushered in similar systems in recent years, with the NHL’s Carolina Hurricanes announcing their “Canes Pass” just earlier this week.
Between high-definition television and social media, as well as a secondary ticket market that has been revolutionized by the likes of StubHub and SeatGeek, more and more teams are brainstorming innovative ways to attract fans to their live experiences.
Florida State is among the first college football programs in the country to adopt such an approach.
“That’s definitely where everyone is going right now,” Wilson said. “The season ticket model is changing. … People want more flexibility. They prefer a tailor-made option.”
Like in basketball, Torch seat locations will be confirmed 48 hours before kickoff, with exact location determined by availability.
While there is a cap on passes used for each game (two for Clemson, four for Virginia Tech and Florida, 10 for all others), Torch allows pass-holders to connect with and request seats with each other via the mobile app.
Torch passes can be purchased at Seminoles.com, and pass-holders can begin making their game selections on August 1.
A little more than one month later, the Taggart era at Florida State will begin when the Seminoles host the Virginia Tech Hokies on Labor Day.