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‘Bucks On Us’ campaign launches to celebrate free admission sports

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Brutus Buckeye and Ohio State Athletic Director Gene Smith participate during the “Buckeye Kick-Off” on August 27 at Ohio Stadium. Credit: Ed Momot / For The Lantern

Brutus Buckeye and Ohio State Athletic Director Gene Smith participate during the Buckeye Kick-Off on August 27 at Ohio Stadium. Credit: Michael Huson / Managing Editor

The Ohio State University Department of Athletics announced the launch of the “Bucks On Us” campaign, which highlights the university’s free admission sports beyond the student body.

OSU students already have garnered free admission to athletics events other than football and men’s basketball.

Varsity sports such as tennis, field hockey, women’s ice hockey, women’s lacrosse and men’s volleyball are just a few of the more than 20 athletic programs that offer free tickets and free parking at regular season home games, as well as unique gifts and concession discounts at select competitions. Meet-and-greets with athletes and coaches are also commonly held after home games.

Athletic Director and Senior Vice President Gene Smith said providing Buckeye fans with free admission games creates an atmosphere that benefits both the athletes and spectators.

“It’s always been a priority of ours to offer affordable opportunities for families and fans to experience Buckeye athletics,” Smith said in a press release. “We’re blessed to have amazing coaches and student-athletes that consistently produce a strong product on the field. They are undoubtedly energized by the way our fans pack their respective venues, creating a home field advantage that is second to none.”

With over 172 free athletic events offered each year on Ohio State’s campus, the “second to none” home field advantage has been apparent at events such as the men’s soccer team’s 2015 Big Ten regular season championship game against Michigan, which drew a crowd of 3,448. Additionally, softball set both single-game and single-season attendance records last spring.

Ethan Rowley, assistant director of fan experience and promotions, said that he hopes the “Bucks On Us” campaign will bring awareness to both students and the general public about the wide variety of sporting events that they have access to.

“Buckeye fans are passionate, but we want them to know that there’s more than football,” Rowley said. “We want them to come out and see all our sports and educate them about all the sports that the athletics department stands behind.”

The next free-admission sporting event will be held by the men’s soccer team when they take on Virginia Tech on Friday, Aug. 26 at 7 p.m. as they host the annual Bert and Iris Wolstein Soccer Classic the weekend of Aug. 26 to 28.

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