Temporary Super Bowl Seats Unfinished Before Kickoff

By Matt Goodman, CBSDFW.COM
seatswide Temporary Super Bowl Seats Unfinished Before Kickoff

A black sheet was placed over some temporary seats at the Super Bowl at Cowboys Stadium on February 6, 2011. (credit: Kent Chapline/KTVT/KTXA)

ARLINGTON (CBSDFW.COM) – When Pittsburgh resident Pat Kelly plopped down in a seat next to his wife, Jill, at Cowboys Stadium on Sunday just before kickoff, it marked the end of a nearly six hour spat of confusion spurred by multiple sections of temporary seating that were not finished before the Super Bowl.

“Thank God I’m here,” he said, slumping into an empty seat in the auxiliary media section.

Thousands of Super Bowl ticket holders were just like the Kellys: They were told at the door that “unforeseen circumstances” may prevent them from attending the big game.

According to a statement released by the NFL, workers were still installing temporary seats in the stadium’s west end – three hours before kickoff. Some of those sold seats, the NFL later said, would not be available at all.

“There are a limited number of sections in temporary seating areas inside the stadium that have not been fully completed,” read a release given to media at Cowboys Stadium. “Fans who are not accommodated with seats inside the stadium will each receive the cost of the face value of their ticket.”

The ticket holders won the chance to buy these $600 tickets through a lottery. Their sections at Cowboys Stadium were to be comprised of temporary seats. But when those fans arrived on Sunday afternoon, they were directed to the venue’s standing-room-only Party Plaza.

The NFL said 850 ticketholders in 205a, 215a, 230a, 240a were affected and relocated. Four hundred fans in 425a and 430a could not be relocated and were given three times the $900 face value as a refund. Plus, on Monday morning, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said that the 400 displaced fans would also receive free tickets to next year’s Super Bowl.

After being directed to the waiting area, a security worker told Dallas resident Jake Batsell, who was at the game with his father, that the fire marshal had not signed off on the temporary seating sections. According to Batsell, a former Dallas Morning News reporter, some ticket holders yelled “Thanks a lot, Jerry Jones!” as television crews filmed the confusion.

“It’s a sealed off area. There are tables, heaters, vans. There’s concessions around here. It looks like it’s going to be a private entertainment area,” Batsell said. “Maybe they let us in early or something, I don’t know.”

Officials with the NFL soon passed out a notice saying that many assigned seats would be “unavailable for today’s game.”

letter Temporary Super Bowl Seats Unfinished Before Kickoff

This letter was handed out to some Super Bowl attendees just hours before the game was set to begin. (credit: CBS)

The NFL’s statement, which was issued about an hour after the incident, went on to say that most of those fans would be moved to seats in similar or better areas. Some were later placed in the auxiliary media section in the stadium.

Ticket holders who were unhappy with the new accomodations, or simply did not want to move, were able to refund their tickets for three times the face value. Fans seeking refunds were transported to Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, just down the street from Cowboys Stadium.

Before these statements were released, there was widespread confusion at Cowboys Stadium about the state of these ticket holders. Batsell said that, on one side of the Party Plaza, he was told that he would not be attending the Super Bowl.

dsc 47851 Temporary Super Bowl Seats Unfinished Before Kickoff

A black sheet was placed over some temporary seats at the Super Bowl at Cowboys Stadium on February 6, 2011. (credit: Kent Chapline/KTVT/KTXA)

“So all this is happening on one side of the area, and on the other side an NFL guy is telling everybody it’s going to be 30 minutes and we’ll still get into the game,” Batsell said. “So no one really knows what the final verdict is at this point…we’ll stay first, one way or another”

After the confusion settled, Batsell and his father were seated in the same section where he bought the tickets: 427a, at the “tippy top” of the stadium, as he later tweeted.

“Believe it or not, people are still buying souvenirs,” he added.

Despite all of the troubles — not just with seats, but with the cold weather as well — Goodell said that the North Texas Super Bowl XLV Host Committee did a terrific job. He said that there is no reason that North Texas could not land another Super Bowl in the future.


One Comment

  1. sailordude says:

    What about those who were stupid enough to buy an outdoor spot for $200?

    I mean, c’mon! A party of four could be living large watching the game at a sports bar or for that matter a strip bar.

    American’s got way too much money it would seem. Not enough brains.

    1. Dave-o says:


      We’re Americans, not ‘American’s’. And use proper grammar, please. It’s ‘Americans have’, not ‘American’s got.’

      Way to prove your own point.

      1. les says:

        i see the grammer police are at it again.

      2. alllen says:

        aent ya got know odder thang to dew den kerrect usens grandma?

      3. Sargent Hulka says:

        Lighten up Francis!

      4. Jahnke says:

        I am with you, man. I hate these illiterate morons … stupid public schools.

      5. bannie says:

        If it weren’t for the grammar police, we’d all be writing in sloppy “text-ese.” God bless the grammar police!

      6. rickyg94 says:


        If all you can do is complain about grammar and spelling then why respond at all? I have a feeling you understood his point just fine, and his point offended you. But instead of refuting his point, you picked on irrelevant stuff like grammar. Get a life… If you understood his point his writing skills are sufficient.

        Do you really think you can eliminate improper grammar and spelling by responding and pointing out mistakes? Really you just seem like an @nus.

      7. Rob0206 says:

        grammEr?? Really? Someone please call the spelling police! Hurry!! If they are too busy, maybe the GED tutor can help Les?

    2. Dave says:

      Who is ‘American’? And how do you know how much money he has?

      1. GordonsBabyArm says:

        Dave, seriously, I can’t take this no more. Let Sailordue be Sailordude, ya chump.

      2. rickyg94 says:

        Dave, are you really this stupid? American, in the context that the guy was using the term, refers to US citizens. That is obvious. And the guy never claimed to know how much money these people have. He only said they have too much. The fact that they can waste so much money on watching this game proves his point.

      3. Bill Webb says:

        Love Stripes…good quote Uncle hulka.

    3. capitalist says:

      What the market can get surely confuses some. We should all be living in misery.

    4. BIGTEX says:

      if us “American’s” have so much money dont you think you should be moving here and learning some proper language skills so you can get a job and make some money also…thats why we have so MUCH money as you say

      1. Dan Brown says:

        It’s “we americans,” of course, to use “proper language skills.”

    5. Dmitrie says:

      Da, Comrade. Too much money. Glorious State must decide how we spend money we earn, not us. Prolitariat too stupid to make own decisions. With such good grasp of needs and wants you must surely be serving the People very well on the Politburo. Continue, Great Comrade: Tell us how is best for us to spend our money. Thanks goodness that in home country the only decision is do we watch superbowl with regular borscht or extra spicy! Stupid, greedy Americans! Now is tine for bathroob break… here comes rolling blackout!

    6. chipgiii says:


      Surely your mental ship is singing.

      1. chipgiii says:

        lol…and so is mine! I meant sinking!

    7. Bill in Buffalo says:

      Most Americans can’t afford to go to the Super Bowl. My family had a Super Bowl party for a fraction of the cost of one ticket.

  2. Egbert says:

    There’s a football game today? Who’s playing?

    1. Boris Yeltisn FBS says:

      Dunno.. Im not much into soccor.

      1. BIGTEX says:

        what is this game you call soccor??

  3. Bill Simons says:

    For the kind of money needed to attend the superbowl, one could buy a 46 inch flat screen and see the game at home and have closer views of plays and re plays than you could ever have at the game. Your wife could make some chicken wings etc .The money and time to get to the game would be nicely given to using the above method . Are you nuts to spend the large amount of money to get to the superbowl plus the travel time ,high gas price ? Or do you have more money to spend than brains . When the game is over you would wind up with a really nice TV .and still put a bunch of money in the bank

    1. BIGTEX says:

      i’m gonna go out on a limb and say you are a materialistic person…its not about the money you spend and what you have in the end…its about living and having fun and doing once in a lifetime things!!!

  4. GordonsBabyArm says:

    Hey Dave-o, we don’t need no stinkin’ grammar police lurking ’round here BOY!

    1. Dave Lambers says:

      He’s not lurking, BOY!

  5. VideoWatcher says:

    Let’s see… For a family of 4, sitting outside, the cost would be…

    Tickets: 200.00 X 4 = 800.00
    Air Fare, Rd. Trip: 500.00 X 4 = 2,000.00
    (Economy Coach,
    Hotel – 2 rooms: 800.00 X 2 = 1,600.00
    (Econo rms @
    Superbowl rates)
    Food & Misc. 200.00 X 4 = 800.00
    Expenses _________

    Total: $5,200.00
    That would buy a REALLY BIG screen TV and one hell of a Superbowl party
    at home!

    1. jb80538 says:

      Bump that by a bit because they were $600 seats not $200!

  6. A Dog's Life says:

    You think they have problems… I just arrived at my family room, and found my lab sleeping in my seat! And, there’s no usher available to communicate a formal complaint!

    Guess I’ll just throw some popcorn on the floor; that should get his attention, and give me my seat back!

  7. scott says:

    Get a life. So much moe in life then cramming into a stadium to watch a game that is available for free

    1. GordonsBabyArm says:

      Slow clap, scotty, slow clap

  8. Dr. Bomaby says:

    “Half this game is ninety percent mental.”
    – Yogi Berra


    1. Russ says:

      Half the fans are 90% mental too.

      1. Robert Frost says:

        90% are half mental…

  9. Bruce says:

    Some fans are very confused. Jerry Jones is not running Super Bowl 45.
    The NFL is in complete control of this operation. The NFL has dropped the ball here, not the City of Arlington or Jerry Jones

    1. Jahnke says:

      You, sir, are dead wrong.

      1. Anthony says:

        Jahnke wanta bet? who is in charge?

      2. Tommy Chapman says:

        You are dead wrong, i work at the stadium and Jerry had NO control of the seating…

  10. GordonsBabyArm says:

    Uh, Bruski, I beg to differ. Jerry Jones promised the NFL that the logistics would be in place and, as such, is carrying the torch for the league, so to speak, and that’s how it should be, now and yesterday and the year before like’s it has always been done. Good morning to ya.

  11. Brendan says:

    Perhaps its about more than just money, Bill.

  12. Mona says:

    c’mon people you all know you would like to experience going to the BIG game. Why did they wait till the last day, excuse me, the last few hours, to try and finish something they started two weeks ago? I think Jerry should invite some of the people up to his suite. Actually I’m sure they could invite at least 5 per suite and accomodate all those who lost their seats to total disorganization.

    1. GordonsBabyArm says:

      Mona, uhhhh, you don’t want the, uhhhh, riff raff commoners running around those high priced stadyum suites. The clean-up costs would be, uhhh, prohibitive and would require a substantial cash outlay.

  13. Moneypenny says:

    It’s nice to know that mediocre is being accepted everywhere and the answer is to throw money at it after the fact instead of doing it right the first time.

    Would someone PLEASE do a debrief cost analysis? P L E A S E

    1. GordonsBabyArm says:

      Moneypenny, uhhh, your moniker clearly, clearly shows that you don’t have the, uhhh, economical insight and uhh, prowess, as it were, to grasp what is at stake in our community where we maintain our domiciles throughout the lifetimes of our grandchildren. Good mornin’ to ya.

  14. just lurking says:

    Hey Guys, It’s their money and they can CHOOSE to spend it how they want to spend it. If they want to go to the game and spend that much money, IT’S THEIR MONEY! You can choose to spend your money how you choose so lighten up!

    1. J.G. Wentworth says:

      It’s YOUR cash, use it when YOU need it!

    2. rickyg94 says:

      just lurking,

      You might have a point if we didn’t have numerous government programs that take from some and give to others. I guarantee there are lots of people buying these tickets who are the same people who don’t have health insurance and claim they can’t afford health care. In reality, they just choose to make irresponsible decisions by buying other things. You know, the same way people drive fancy cars but don’t save for retirement or job loss, etc. So as long as I am taxed to pay for necessities for irresponsible people, some of which I am sure are paying hundreds of dollars to see a moronic game, I will continue to state my opinion on how people should spend their money.

      BTW, if you don’t like reading peoples’ opinions, don’t read the comments. It doesn’t take a genius to figure that out.

      Thank you,

  15. Jp says:

    You can de ice a plane why not the stadium

    1. GordonsBabyArm says:

      That’s easy, uhhhh, Jp. There are no wangs on the stadyum, so undoing the icing scenario is not plausible at this juncture in our lives. Good mornin’ to ya sir.

  16. Mona says:

    lmfao, you might have a point, on the other hand, maybe they are only rif without the raff and can handle themselves??? Personally I like the commercials so I like watching it on T.V. but one day I would like to go.

  17. Me says:

    As a resident of Texas. I thank all of you that are putting money into our economy.

  18. MrHand says:

    Pretty sad. Why spend all that for something forgotten by next near?

  19. DarkStarAz says:

    They are giving three times the face value, 3 x 600=1800
    “…what dya mean $1800? …my wife and I bought 2 of these from a scalper for 2500/ea, flew to dallas, rented a car and a hotel…”

  20. john says:

    complain complain complain..

  21. diane_s says:

    They are giving three times the face value, 3 x 600=1800
    “…what dya mean $1800? …my wife and I bought 2 of these from a scalper for 2500/ea, flew to dallas, rented a car and a hotel…”

    Not real smart, are ya?

  22. gstefan says:

    Have a great Superbowl Slackers and Sqealers fans. I hope the weather was cold enough. I don’t think they could have found 2 teams Dallas fans hate more to play at the Death Star.

  23. 1968mustang says:

    Jerry Jones just didn’t care to take care of this issue on schedule since his ‘Boys weren’t in the game. He’s a joke.

    1. Steven Jones says:

      juvenile Jerry Jones Attack

  24. john says:

    Blame Jerry Jones for the weather also

  25. capability says:

    Gregg Rosenthal is an even bigger idiot for blaming the DALLAS fire marshall. The superbowl is in Arlington, TX, not DALLAS, TX. Why doesn’t the incompetent reporter blame the Culver City, CA – the headquarters of the NFL.

  26. Last time I come to Dallas .. Oh im Mean Arlington.. says:

    Yeah I am going to blame Greedy King Jerry for not caring about the lowly
    shmucks who bought tickets and waited in the freakin snow at the airports,waited at his stadium only to find out their tickets were worth nothing.
    I hope you never get another superbowl in Arlington. Jerry sees them as
    dollar signs and small collatoral damage to his great majestic place in history!

    1. jcwink says:

      Jerry Jones is the best owner in the NFL …. General Manager not so good. I hope he make tons of money he needs to………. he has the guts to build the best sporting facility in the world right here in the DFW Metro and your are calling him greedy? Why don’t you pay the mortgage on that facility. We could still have the old Texas stadium and no superbowl. No NBA all star, no NCAA championship. If in fact you do not live here no big deal if you don’t come back.. Your small mind will not be missed…. Adios Amigo

      1. John Gault says:

        Exactly,,,,, he built a 1.3 Billion stadium during a rescession!!! Thats takes some cajones. Modern American Risk Taker…

  27. Boing says:

    How someone spends THEIR money should be of no ones business unless it threatens you physically and can bring you harm. The judgemental attitude here is certainly with in your right to make a comment. But to act as though you want to tell someone how to spend their money is JUST PLAIN WRONG!

    1. unionman says:

      It is the modern American way to think we are entitled to tell people how to spend their money and even to feel like we are entitled to ther peoples’ money. It is called being a democrat. Get used to it because it is only gonna get worse. I feel like anybody who has thousands of dollars to spend to watch a silly game has too much money and Obama and his democrats should force them to give some to me. Sorry you don’t like my opinion sissyboy.

      1. governmentisamonster says:

        Unions are one of the main causes of the mess we are in financially. You must be a taker not a producer.

  28. Chuck says:

    Wow the CBS Dumb F— Web really reeled in a bunch of fish this time. All the girly boys sitting around slamming stuff they don’t like just because putting down others is their national pastime. I’ll bet not one of you dweebs ever turned on MTV. Now there’s a place that really challenges the intellect – if you’re a slug.

  29. dee says:

    the rerun of csi miami was a good one tonight. did tune in to see which team won.
    now the people who drove for 27 hours to get to arlington and paid $9,000 for a ticket can start the drive back home. arlington can clean up the mess, using their firefighters, and the phrase’ ‘super bowl’ can be retired for a year.

  30. Chuck says:

    Why do you people care how other people spend their time and money? It’s NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS! That’s a phrase that deserves a big comeback. I’m sure people don’t like you and your goth garb either and I’m sure that’s just how you want it. But my guess is that your mouth gets you in trouble quite often. When I see those clown patrols coming my way I do the polite thing and laugh. That’s what you want isn’t it? All clowns want people to laugh don’t they? Oh I forgot. You actually take yourself seriously. Your infinite teenage wisdom should run the world, right? Here’s my advice. Get all the tats you can get while you’re young because you will really love them when you’re 45. Really. And yes children you will live to be 45 most likely. And teenage angst will still be trying to get a rise out of old folks but YOU will be the old folks then.

  31. waicool says:

    bunch of crybabies, sit down shut up and watch the game ya bunch of dramaqueeens, somebody find dad a chair. get real people

  32. StJames888 says:

    Tickets – >$2000.00
    Transportation- >$2000.0
    Satisfaction= 0
    Police State Demonstration= What You Are Willing To Pay
    Regret= Infinate
    Wake Up America… INFOWARS.COM

  33. R P Foster says:

    Sounds to me like Mr Jones got greedy. It is not like they didn’t know when the game was going to be played. Chalk it up to Mr. Jones not giving a horse’s rear end about the fans

  34. s carter says:

    Jerry Jones owns 50 percent and Arlington taxpayers are footing the bill for the remainder of the stadium. You can be sure that the only ones who will profit from this fiasco are Jerry, his son, daughter and the NFL. (the city of Arlington will foot the bill for the firefighters who had to clear the roof of ice and not to mention cleaning up the trash and funding security among many other city services provided ). Of course we can t blame anyone for the weather but everything else pretty much falls back to Jerry Jones and his organizination. From not having the holes in the roof repaired to the temporary seats not being installed. And don t forget the terrible halftime show.. He has insurance to cover the refunds to fans. He s so busy running around acting like a big shot he could care less how the disallusioned fans (both local and visiting) feel. Mr Jones is always making many promises he can t keep. Ranging from the broken down football team he owns and how NEXT YEAR is always going to be the year we re going to the superbowl! To promising the NFL his new billion dollar stadium will be a showcase for years to come. (notice not one comentator made mention of it because no one has any respect for him). Long story short, as long as Mr Jones can be a legend in his own mind the . . . . with every one else! He is an egotistical . . . . . . .! AND THE ENTIRE EVENT WAS A MESS!!!! WE HAVE NO HOPE OF EVER GETTING ANOTHER SUPER BOWL.

  35. s carter says:

    waicool is oh so funny…

  36. catherwood says:


  37. Jack P says:

    The elitists got what they deserved and Jerry Jones will never be awarded another Super Bowl. Couldn’t ask for a better outcome.

  38. Earl Pitts says:

    Wake up America? You stole my line. You want us to all have to stand in line 6 hours for a Slurpee at the local 7/11 don’t you? That’s how all the good commies want things. Pitts off.

  39. Hunter says:

    I was in section 407a and experienced these issues too, horrible! They issued us a letter in the third quarter saying that we would receive a refund for the face value of our tickets. We have to mail our tickets in and hopefully the NFL honors their word…I’m sure many lawsuits are going to come against the NFL and Jerry Jones for this unforgivable situation!

  40. mjl says:

    i was sitting in section 245a row 44seat 1,2, the lastrow couldn see are hear the nfl didn’t said nothing to me i told worker that my seat were to bad i can see the sand up then i cant see the 25inh tv i told iam a DAV go back to your seat i did because we came to have some fun i live in dallas tx, it was more poeple in the section.

  41. bob b says:

    you all are idiots!!!! This is America!!!!! i pay my own way, i do my part in this place! So F.O.

  42. Taker not Producer says:

    I am jellious of what other people have and will use my vote to take their wealth away from them

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