CHAMPAIGN— Football fans have been thirstier than expected, University of Illinois athletic officials said.
Memorial Stadium beer sales totaled roughly $488,000 during home games this season, The (Champaign) News-Gazette reported. When school officials announced plans earlier this year to sell beer, they predicted sales in the low six figures.
Sales were strongest during three Big Ten football games: Nebraska, Michigan and Wisconsin. The lowest tally came during a sparsely attended loss to Northwestern two days after Thanksgiving, officials said.
Campus police said the numbers of arrests and ejections have been consistent with previous years. Chief Craig Stone said there were few problems — similar to what he experienced in the same job at Ohio State University, when that school started selling beer at football games.
Officials said revenue will be shared between the university's Division of Intercollegiate Athletics and Spectra, which provides concessions for athletic events.