Mark Harlan Expects Large Number Of Utah Fans To Attend Rose Bowl

Dec 13, 2021, 2:36 PM | Updated: 4:04 pm
Mark Harlan - Utah Athletic Director...
University of Utah's new Athletics Director Mark Harlan leaves the field at Rice Eccles Stadium on Monday, June 4, 2018. (Courtesy of Deseret News)
(Courtesy of Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY – University of Utah Athletic Director Mark Harlan expects to see Utes fans show up in big numbers when they face Ohio State in the Rose Bowl.

Utah will face Ohio State for just the second team in school history in their first ever Rose Bowl appearance, coming off of their first Pac-12 Championship.

Mark Harlan joined Hans Olsen and Scott Garrard on the “Hans and Scotty G. Show” on The Zone Sports Network on Monday afternoon. You can listen to the full interview, below.

Mark Harlan Expects Big Number Of Utah Fans In Pasadena

Tickets have been and are continuing to be distributed to the Crimson Club before Utah’s allotment gets released to the general public. Utah fans that don’t have the opportunity yet to buy tickets to the Rose Bowl have gone through Ohio State’s allotment, which was released to the general public.

Harlan explained how the ticketing goes for the Rose Bowl and the importance of the agreement between the “Granddaddy of them all” and the Pac-12 Conference.

“Well, if you look within the Pac-12, certainly the Rose Bowl contract, which is the largest contract that we have outside of our television agreements, those revenues are spread pretty equally amongst the 12 schools,” Harlan told The Zone Sports Network. “That helps us get to that mid 30 payout that we all get in the Pac 12 Conference. I think when you talk about the the Rose Bowl, for example, our ticket allotment and all those things, those are tickets that we purchased. Then we turn and sell them to our Crimson Club members.

“Here’s what I know to be true, the revenue really comes in, in sources that are a little bit difficult to track,” Harlan continued. “Things like additional enrollment numbers, or application numbers or brand value as it relates to souvenirs, and those types of things. It’s not extra millions filling into the athletic department in that way. But it’s brought a lift to the entire university. That makes it such a special thing.”


Harlan has been tracking the numbers of tickets that have been sold for the Rose Bowl and thinks this will be a very Utah-heavy crowd in Pasadena.

“On January one, there’ll be more people focused in on the brand of Utah, maybe outside of the Final Four years ago on that day,” Harlan stated. “It’s hard to put a value number on that. But we know things like our renewal numbers will be great in football, and perhaps other opportunities come your way in scheduling down the line. So we know there’s a lot of that going on. But we’re just most excited about all the energy surrounding the University of Utah. I mean, guys, when this thing is said and done, we may have 60,000-plus fans, based on some of the data I was looking at this morning, between our allotment, and out there. We’re gonna just be unbelievable in our representation of the game and that’s just so exciting.”

Reaching The Rose Bowl

Harlan has been front and center of it all when it comes to the 2021 Utah football team. From the high expectations in the preseason, to honoring Ty Jordan, to watching the team get off to a 1-2 start, then dealing with another tragedy after Aaron Lowe was shot and killed in late September. Then to see the team go 9-1 in their last 10 games, which included winning a Pac-12 title and a berth in the Rose Bowl.

“Yeah, there is surreal moments when you stop and think about everything,” mentioned Harlan. “We all haven’t had a lot of time to stop and think, we’re just all moving forward and just enjoying all this. But everything goes to the guys and coach Willingham and that staff and just how they continued to gain momentum throughout the season and overcome tragedy and just stay together. To see them celebrate, now over a week ago in Vegas was something I certainly will never forget.”

Utah will face Ohio State in the Rose Bowl on Saturday, January 1 at 3 p.m. MT on ESPN.

Trevor Allen is a Utah Utes Insider for KSLSports.com, Co-Host of Faith, Family and Football podcast with Clark Phillips III and host of the Crimson Corner podcast. Follow him on Twitter: @TrevorASports.

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Mark Harlan Expects Large Number Of Utah Fans To Attend Rose Bowl