This past week, Washington State sent out a letter from Mike Leach, urging fans to snatch up tickets to The Seattle Game. The fear, of course, is that Oregon fans will greatly outnumber Washington State fans on September 29, and the athletic department is trying to be proactive about marketing the game. This includes the letter below, calls to fans and donors, and various other marketing tricks.
Here's what Leach wrote:
Dear Cougar fan,
On September 29 our football team will host the Oregon Ducks at CenturyLink Field in Seattle. I can't wait to see our fans in the stadium for this game and for the entire 2012 season. As a team we are excited and focused on the upcoming season and are currently working to improve in every area of the game.
Since the Ducks are so close to Seattle, I have heard on multiple occasions that there will be just as many Oregon fans at the game as Cougar fans. I refuse to even fathom that notion. I have great confidence in our fans and I know on September 29 CenturyLink field will be full of Crimson and Gray.
This is our game, Seattle is our town, and you as a Cougar fan have exclusive access to purchase tickets before they go on sale to the general public. Once tickets go on sale to the general public on August 4, we will not be able to control who buys after that date. I want to give you exclusive access right now to get online and get your seats secured. Bring your friend and family as we continue The Seattle Game tradition. Thank you for being on board as we build something great.
I'm going to assume he wrote the letter himself. The language in it certainly seems to fit his style.
The letter actually serves multiple purposes. Sure, it may help mobilize fans and, at the very least, increase awareness about The Seattle Game. It's also a subtle jab at the University of Washington -- Seattle is our town -- and is sure to get Oregon fans worked up a bit.
If my Twitter mentions are any indication, it's working. Oregon fans are in "we'll show you" mode -- which increases the bottom line for WSU anyway -- and Washington fans are ... intrigued by the "our town" line. Either way it works out well for the Cougars, though the hope is that WSU fans will leave only a small number of tickets by the time the general sale rolls around.
To buy tickets -- if you're a CAF member or have a promo code -- head over here.