With the Nevada football team’s home opener just 51 days away, the Wolf Pack has neared last year’s season-ticket sales number.

“We’re about to hit where we hit last year in terms of our season-ticket number, but that’s not where we want to be,” Rempe recently told Nevada Sports Net for its Wolf Pack Year in Review show.

The Wolf Pack had a season-ticket base last season of 7,790, which was a 10.7 percent year-over-year increase despite the team coming off a 2-10 season. Nevada is again coming off a 2-10 season but hired a new head coach, Jeff Choate, to replace Ken Wilson in December. Rempe credited Choate’s activity in the community for getting fans interested in the program.

“Could not ask for somebody to be better when it comes to Coach Choate sharing his passion, getting out in the community,” Rempe said. “I would ask anybody on the street, if you see a football player, go up to them, talk to them, ask them about their experiences, what they’re learning, what’s going to happen this fall because I think it will be something that people will very much enjoy hearing about the experience of our student-athletes and what they’re doing.”

Nevada’s season-ticket base last season included 5,402 paid season-ticket holders and 2,388 comped season tickets. Since being hired as Nevada’s athletic director two years ago, Rempe has tried to decrease the number of complimentary tickets to lessen the number of free tickets in the community and increase the interest in buying season tickets. Last year included a 17.3 percent increase in paid season tickets.

Last month, the Wolf Pack lost associate athletic director Sam Haughton, who oversaw Nevada’s ticketing operation and fan engagement, after he accepted a job at Vanderbilt. But the Wolf Pack is on pace to increase its season-ticket base in football, which is a key revenue source for the department. In the most recently reported fiscal year (2023), Nevada football lost $3,652,987, a problem that must be fixed with increased ticket sales.

Nevada’s season tickets start at $99 for general admission and $20 for single games, some of the lowest figures in the FBS. The Wolf Pack will play an additional home game this season, which is allowed by the NCAA because Nevada has a road game at Hawaii.

Among the Wolf Pack’s seven home opponents are SMU, Georgia Southern, Eastern Washington, Oregon State, Fresno State, Colorado State and Air Force. Nevada hosts a so-called Week 0 game against SMU on Aug. 24 in Choate’s Wolf Pack coaching debut. Nevada has stumped for a “Drive for 25” to have 25,000 fans in attendance for the game.

“We have incredibly low season-ticket prices,” Rempe said. “We have (two) Power 5 teams that are coming and playing here, which is pretty spectacular. SMU being here, it’s Week 0, so people aren’t used to starting football quite as early. We’re asking people to come out and welcome Coach Choate and all of the players. And we’d love to get 20,000-plus people in the football stadium for the SMU game, so people can buy season tickets still. And then, of course, single games are on sale now. More than anything, we want people to get there on Aug. 24 to kick off the season the right way.”

Nevada is coming off arguably the worst back-to-back seasons in program history, a combined 4-20 record that included a program-long 16-game losing streak. Last season, Nevada won back-to-back games over San Diego State and New Mexico in October but otherwise lost its 10 games, nine coming by double-digits. Nevada lost by an average margin of 16.1 points per game, which led to Wilson’s dismissal and the hiring of Choate, who was Texas’ co-defensive coordinator and linebackers coach. Choate also was Montana State’s head coach for five seasons, going 28-22 overall and 18-14 from 2016-20.

Nevada returns just eight starters (four on offense; four on defense) from last year’s team. Rempe said the players have been putting in extra work to try and turn the program around.

“They had a day off the other day, and it was a required day off, they couldn’t have practice (with coaches) because they’re not in season,” Rempe said. “And the team self-selected to be out there at 6:30 in the morning having workouts themselves, player run. We need people to come out and support.”

You can watch the full interview with Nevada AD Stephanie Rempe below.

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