Harvard Stadium will be filled to capacity for The Game next Saturday, but alumni from the classes 1950 to the present won't be in the stands--unless they can obtain tickets from enterprising student scalpers.
Because of a flood of ticket applications for what will probably be a confrontation between two of the East's three undefeated football powers, with the Ivy League title at stake, the Harvard Department of Athletics has been unable to meet the ticket requests of approximately 25,000 old grads.
After allotting tickets to undergraduate season ticket holders and other high priority groups, only about 9000 seats were available for alumni. And approximately 30,000 alumni sent in request for two tickets each.
The athletic department erected wooden end-zone stands to add 1956 seats to the Stadium's usual 37,283 capacity, and about 500 standing room tickets for the top of the stadium have been issued, but the number is far short of allowing Harvard to fill even half of the applications.
15,000 Yale Seats
"We could have sold about 100,000 tickets, including those sold at Yale," Gordon M. Page, Harvard's ticket manager said. By agreement between the two schools, Yale receives approximately 15,000 tickets to sell when the game is in Cambridge.
All undergraduates who applied for tickets will be given seats, however, and this is a major reason why some alumni will be left out in the cold. The ticket office reserves sections 33-37, and in this case end-zone and standing room sections, about 9000 seats, for undergraduates and their guests.
"Harvard is one of the few schools that still feels that the game is for the undergraduates," Page said. "We think we should accommodate their requests before we take care of the alumni," he said, "and we make sure they all get in."
Nine thousand student tickets will be issued for The Game--"the largest amount by far at least in my seven years in the ticket office," according to Page.
Freshmen On Top
"Seniors and juniors hit us the hardest," Page said. "They will probably get 90 percent of the seats in the regular stands," he said. Some lucky sophomores will end up in the side stands, but most of them, and all the freshmen will be in the end-zone or on top of the Stadium.
The last time Yale played Harvard in Cambridge, when the Crimson tied for a share of the Ivy title, undergraduates only took between seven and eight thousand seats.
The department of athletics has set up an elaborate system of priorities to determine just who will get tickets for the important games.
In order it is as follows: the President of the University and Fellows; Board of Overseers; Faculty Committee on Athletics; football squad; football "H" men; college faculty members (full or associate professors); undergraduates; Varsity Club members; college alumni (earliest class being given preference); graduate school students; graduate school alumni; and people with no connection whatever to the University.
Other factors have further cut into the amount of tickets that can be given to alumni. Season ticket sales increased by about 700 over last year, and wiped out almost a full section of previously available seats.
Harvard football players receive a certain amount of tickets, also. Each member of the squad gets two complementary seats and has the option to buy two more. The players who actually dress for the game receive four complementary tickets and have a similar option.