Take one national championship, add a top-tier recruiting class, and mix it into an already-established college basketball brand and what do you get?
Increased ticket prices.
According to Darren Rovell of CNBC, the Kentucky Wildcats will be raising ticket prices by $5 per game for season ticket holders, and between $7 and $10 for single-game tickets for the 2012-13 season.
Rovell also reports that the first four rows at Rupp Arena, reserved for the biggest donors to the Kentucky program, will remain at $5,000 per seat.
Coach John Calipari and the Wildcats won the national title this past season, which typically calls for a boost in ticket prices, but it also doesn’t hurt that Kentucky will be bringing in a Top 3 recruiting class, led by center Nerlens Noel.
The Wildcats are sending six players to the NBA draft, including presumed top overall pick Anthony Davis. Joining Davis will be Terrence Jones, Doron Lamb, Marquis Teague, Darius Miller, and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.
Calipari has officially succeeded in his experiment with youth, as questions lingered before this season’s national championship whether he could turn a group of highly skilled recruits into a cohesive team capable of making a deep run in the tournament.
His 2012 recruiting class continues that cycle, but one major factor that set the 2011-12 team apart was a willingness to play defense, which will need to show up again this coming season for the Wildcats to have success.
Either way, you’ll have to pay a little more to watch it all unfold in person.