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Rationale Behind RCAF Parking

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I've read a number of comments both positive and negative concerning the new RCAF parking policy over the last few days. Rather than making it personal about those that I may disagree with, let's look at the rationale behind the decision and why it must be done.

For many years the UL Football program has been dysfunctional at best, with losing or mediocre seasons on the field. The administration had to basically give away tickets or parking passes to get causal and diehard Cajun fans alike just to show up. Over many of those seasons, fans could just pull up and park close to the stadium with no problems five minutes before kick-off, because there just wasn't enough people showing up to watch the product on the football field. Heck nor was there much need of prime tailgate spots because those were readily available to all as well. So, many of us little guys really didn't have to pay premium prices for such things because the demand was just not there for the product on the field.

Today, we have a football program that went to its first bowl game in over 40 years and has the potential to return to another bowl game this season. We have a head football coach that is paid over $800,000 per year, which was the total salary for the entire staff within the last few years. We have a modern indoor practice facility, new football equipment, new football offices and major improvements in the works. Fans have begged for years to have a football program that they could be proud of, travel to bowl games to watch and invite friends to tailgate with. Now we have it or at least the beginnings of what could be a very good football program for more than a season. Change has finally come and it comes with a price.

No longer can the casual fan or little guy just pull up to the stadium at game time and get the parking and tailgating benefits as donors to the program do. Change comes with a price and all must pay for the improvements in the program. You don't get good coaches, facilities and winning football without paying for it. Nowhere in the country is there a winning FBS football program that does not charge for such amenities. Change is difficult, but change for the good comes with a cost.

I can understand with the economy entertainment dollars are in short supply for some families. Family comes first and I don't easily dismiss the complaints of those that are currently struggling to get by that the cost are too much for them to pay right now. But clearly there are some that don't want to pay for the change simply because they haven't in the past. Unfortunately for those, there are plenty of people that are willing to pay for it and Coach Hudspeth will make sure more will be willing to pay in the future.

For those that say UL needs to remember the little guy, they haven't forgotten about them but the price of being one of the little guys has went up just like everything else today. No longer can you pack the family in the van or station wagon, pull up to the stadium five minutes before game time, find parking and buy general admissions tickets at the local high school price. Affordable game day tickets are still available for those that cannot afford season tickets and free parking for those that cannot afford the RCAF donation for parking closer to the stadium. A UL football game is still an affordable entertainment venue for most families without season tickets if one does their homework. But the little guy can no longer expect the same benefits of those that are willing to pay more for the conveniences of reserved parking and seating.


  1. Dman's Avatar
    Amen to that! We are still far and away one of the best deals in college football! Does anyone happen to know which game has been designated as homecoming this year? I heard maybe Tulane...but haven't seen anything. Thanks!