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Pitt closing in on record number of football season ticket sales - The Pitt News

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Pitt closing in on record number of football season ticket sales

Attendance+is+on+the+rise+heading+into+the+2016-17+Pitt+football+season.++Jeff+Ahearn+%7C+Senior+Staff+Photographer
Attendance is on the rise heading into the 2016-17 Pitt football season.  Jeff Ahearn | Senior Staff Photographer

Attendance is on the rise heading into the 2016-17 Pitt football season. Jeff Ahearn | Senior Staff Photographer

Attendance is on the rise heading into the 2016-17 Pitt football season. Jeff Ahearn | Senior Staff Photographer

By Steve Rotstein / Sports Editor

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The stands at Heinz Field aren’t always full on football Saturdays, but they’re trending in that direction.

Pitt’s athletic department announced in a letter Tuesday morning that 93 percent of season ticket holders have renewed their subscription for the upcoming football season.

On top of that, Pitt has sold almost 10,000 new season tickets, putting the University on track to break the school record for season ticket sales — a goal Athletic Director Scott Barnes set in February.

“Our goal is to set an all-time record for season tickets at Heinz Field,” Barnes told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “You sometimes are challenged when you come out with a goal and you don’t meet the goal. We feel really comfortable in stating this.”

Pitt’s all-time record for season ticket sales is 53,775, set in 2003. According to the letter — which both Barnes and head football coach Pat Narduzzi signed — the school expects to actually break the record in August, when the majority of undergraduate student ticket purchases occur.

Since his hiring in April 2015, Barnes has made an effort to revamp Pitt’s athletic facilities, streamline varsity athletic uniforms to feature the Pitt script logo, improve the school’s donor base and increase ticket sales.

The athletic department unveiled the new athletic uniforms in a special ceremony at the Petersen Events Center May 18, and some of the facilities upgrades — including a new turf field at Pitt’s football practice facility complete with the new script logo — are already complete.

Now, with the announcement of increased ticket sales, Barnes appears to have the athletic department headed in the direction he envisioned.

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Pitt closing in on record number of football season ticket sales