Michigan’s basketball team has struggled at home this season, falling in three consecutive games at one point to N.J.I.T., Eastern Michigan and SMU in the midst of a four-game losing streak. But ticket prices have skyrocketed for the Wolverines’ Big Ten opener against Illinois on Tuesday night as Michigan fans anticipate the announcement and arrival of new football head coach Jim Harbaugh.
College Football Talk has more on how the San Francisco 49ers head coach is likely heading back to coach his alma mater and Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com is reporting that Harbaugh will be introduced during a press conference on Tuesday.
That would mean Harbaugh would likely receive an introduction to fans at Crisler Arena during Tuesday night’s basketball game. Tickets (as of this writing on Dec. 28) are at a minimum of $119 for Tuesday’s Illinois game, which is nearly double the minimum ticket for the Jan. 24 game against Big Ten favorite Wisconsin ($66) or still $40 or so more than games for rivals Michigan State ($85) or Ohio State ($80).
Some tickets for Big Ten games are going for as cheap as $20, like Nebraska and Iowa, so this Illinois game is definitely in demand. This matters because although John Beilein’s ballclub has broken the four-game losing streak with a home win over Coppin State, now they’ll have a sold out and fired up home crowd for their Big Ten opener.
If we’ve learned anything about the Big Ten this early season, we know the league doesn’t have very many good teams and maybe Michigan can use this sort of game as a springboard to early conference success. The Wolverines have some bad losses, sure, but things can change quickly if conference play goes well. They have enough talent to win some games with players like Caris LeVert, Zak Irvin and Derrick Walton and they need some more outside of that trio and on the interior to win some games.
We’ll see if this potential Harbaugh introduction leads to an energized home crowd for Michigan on Tuesday.
(H/T: Reddit user tks231)