Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Acted or Reacted - How Others See Us
No Alcohol in the House That Bob Built

From NCAA Football:

The University of Minnesota's Board of Regents has decided to go dry. The Board acted Wednesday to ban alcohol sales at all its on-campus venues, including the soon-to-open TCF Bank Stadium.

"Acted" might be a bit of stretch, actually. "Reacted" is closer to the truth, as the Minnesota State Legislature recently enacted a law mandating that if some fans would be able to buy alcohol at University sporting events, all fans of legal age had to be allowed to.

That seems like a silly law until you consider that the U of M planned to sell alcohol to people in TCF Bank Stadium's luxury boxes while making it unavailable in the cheap seats. I'm sure the Board had its reasons, but the Legislature stuck up for the little guy for once.

Of course, all this move does is correct a quirk that made the Metrodome doubly unique among Big Ten football stadiums.

The Humpty Dump was not only the Big Ten's only indoor venue; it was also the only one where students of legal age could buy alcohol during a game.

Minnesota is now one of only three schools which explicitly forbid anyone to have alcohol in their athletic venues. (Michigan and Ohio State are the others.) As for the rest of the schools? They just hope you don't wonder too much about what's going in those luxury boxes.

Still, the excitement around the opening of TCF Bank Stadium should build a bigger buzz around Gopher football than anything since the days of Murray Warmath. Tim Brewster and his crew had better be vigilant, however. If the team's performance drives the boosters to drink, they'll have to do it somewhere else.

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