Texas A&M-Alabama ticket not cheap

Prices paid for the Texas A&M-Alabama game this weekend have entered elite space.

Ticket-reselling marketplace StubHub has sold more than 5,100 tickets to the game at an average price of $639. That price is in the range paid for the so-called "Game of the Century" between No. 1 LSU and No. 2 Alabama in November 2011; those teams met again for the BCS title.

For the 2006 game between No. 1 Ohio State and No. 2 Michigan, tickets averaged $857 on StubHub.

The highest price paid for tickets on StubHub for this Alabama-A&M game was for a group of four club seats that sold for $20,000 earlier this month.

Ticketmaster's resale site, TicketsNow, only quoted average prices paid on its site for tickets to the game ($593). That's at least $200 more than the price paid for the weekend's next-most costly game -- UCLA at Nebraska ($369).

TiqIQ, a ticket-market aggregator, said prices for Alabama-A&M on the resale market listed for an average of $763, which surpasses the "Game of the Century" average list price by nearly $60.

Steve Susce, who owns Birmingham-based AAATix, says he doesn't expect this game to match prices paid for the "Game of the Century" by kickoff. Susce said the Alabama-LSU game reached the prices it did because it was late in the season and Tuscaloosa is only 350 miles from Baton Rouge. Susce said that decisions for Alabama-A&M had to be made sooner because College Station is almost double the drive from cities in Alabama.

Susce said the most coveted ticket he has ever seen -- but not the most expensive -- was before fans could easily buy tickets on the Internet. That was in 1993, when No. 6 Auburn played No. 11 Alabama. And because the Tigers were on probation, the game was not allowed to be televised.

"It was $500 a ticket at kickoff, and that was at a time where we'd never even seen tickets sell for $150," Susce said.

The demand for Saturday's game has helped Texas A&M command the fourth-highest ticket list prices in college football. TiqIQ data suggests that only prices at Ohio State, Notre Dame and Michigan are higher.

Unlike Texas A&M's previous two home games -- against Rice and Sam Houston State, for which students could buy up to six tickets for half price -- this game is in a different stratosphere. On Tuesday, university officials warned students that they are prohibited from selling their tickets for a profit. Any students caught doing so face possible loss of ticket privileges for the rest of their A&M careers.