Football Fans Too Poor to Get to Miami

You know times are tough when crazed college football fans in places like cold-ass Blacksburg, Virginia; and Cincinnati, Ohio, 

can't scrounge up enough change

to get to sunny Miami for a January 1 bowl game. But alas, that is the cold, hard truth of these tough economic times.

More depressing recession-related news and what it means for our tourism-dependent economy after the jump.

Ticket sales for the Orange Bowl are so low that Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer recently made a short video for the school's website, imploring Hokie fans to travel to Miami to watch the January 1 game against Cincinnati.

Cincinnati and Virginia Tech both got 17,500 tickets to sell to their fans and students, but so far Cincinnati has sold only about 9,000, and one travel agent in Blacksburg, Virginia, says she's having a hard time selling travel packages to the game. 

Sales are even down for the national championship, also held at Dolphin Stadium, January 8. All of which is very bad news for Miami, which is more or less the epicenter of the subprime mortgage meltdown, because the two bowl games were expected to have a total economic impact of $350 million to $400 million for South Florida.

The upside to all of this, Florida fan? Ticket prices are plummeting, meaning that for a couple hundred bucks, you might actually be able to watch the Gators play live for the national championship.

-- Jesse Hyde

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