Ticket Demand for NCAA Basketball Games in Milwaukee

With No. 2 seeds Wisconsin and Michigan playing at the BMO Harris Bradley Center, NCAA tournament tickets in Milwaukee are among the most expensive in the country this week. Two of the Big Ten’s top dogs get to stay close to home for their first week in the NCAA Tournament, and fans are turning out to make sure they can cheer them into the Sweet 16. The average ticket price of a full strip for the six games in Milwaukee is $427, making it the third-most expensive 2nd/3rd-round full strip behind only St. Louis ($433), benefiting from the presence of Wichita St./Kansas/Kentucky/Kansas State, and Buffalo ($443), which is hosting Syracuse.

Because of Wisconsin’s presence, there’s a growing gap in ticket prices for the two second-round sessions on Thursday. The cheapest ticket available for the afternoon session, which will feature Wisconsin-American and Oregon-BYU, is $87, almost 2x the cost of the least expensive seat on the market ($46) for the evening session of Michigan-Wofford and Texas-Arizona State; going by the average ticket price since scheduling was announced, the afternoon session is also outpacing the evening games, $133 versus $106.

Normally, evening-session tickets are more expensive because more fans are in the market to buy seats to games that tip off after the end of the workday, but the Badgers are causing a reverse of that trend in Milwaukee. Saturday’s third-round session in Milwaukee, which could be headlined by both Wisconsin and Michigan, is the second-most expensive of the eight Saturday/Sunday sessions this year at an average ticket price of $205; only the Buffalo third-round session (potential for a Syracuse-Ohio State/Villanova-UConn doubleheader) is pricier at $210 per ticket. Aside from UFC 164 last August (average ticket price of $207), Saturday’s session is on pace to be the most expensive sporting event at the BMO Harris Bradley Center since 2009 when we began monitoring the secondary market.

NCAA Second and Third-Round Tickets – Milwaukee

Average Prices for NCAA Tournament Tickets

The average prices for NCAA Basketball tickets generally drop as the actual session days approach.

Based on data from last year’s NCAA tournament, the average price paid for a Session 1 ticket fell by 47% from Selection Sunday to gametime. The average Session 2 ticket sold for 21% less on gameday than it did on Selection Sunday, and Session 3 tickets fell by 15%. So for fans who haven’t yet bought tickets, there’s still an ample opportunity to find a good deal as you get closer to the event.

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