Rabalais: I hate to mix sports, politics; it's unfair legislators get special access to LSU vs. UL-Lafayette tickets _lowres

Advocate staff file photo by Mark Saltz -- Alex Box Stadium at Skip Bertman Field.

Louisiana legislators getting special treatment is hardly a new story.

LSU playing Louisiana-Lafayette in an NCAA baseball super regional is.

Despite the Tigers and Ragin’ Cajuns’ proud baseball traditions, this will be a first. Considering what’s at stake – a trip to the College World Series – plus the history, plus the proximity of the two schools, plus the lack of love between these two fan bases, this promises to be the biggest weekend of college baseball in Louisiana since Tulane beat LSU in the 2001 super regional at Zephyr Field.

It may even be bigger than that.

We’re talking one tough ticket. I joked with LSU athletic director Joe Alleva after the Tigers eliminated UNC Wilmington on Monday that if the Cajuns were coming to town they should move this show to Tiger Stadium. He smiled, knowing there will be a lot more demand for tickets than 10,326-seat Alex Box Stadium can hold. LSU will no doubt sell some standing room only passes, but the ballpark will probably max out at something under 13,000 tickets.

It will be toughest for Louisiana-Lafayette fans to get in the ballpark. They’re only guaranteed 600 tickets by NCAA rule. Considering LSU has about 9,200 season ticket holders, people who bought those season tickets in part for the right to buy tickets for a super regional like this, there won’t be many seats left for anyone else.

That makes those 288 tickets LSU has set aside for state senators and representatives (two per legislator) worth a lot more than the $67 it will cost to purchase ticket books for the best-of-three series.

I hate to see politics mixed with sports (or anything, really), but at times like this my populist tendencies really come out. To me, the chance to snare some of the precious few available super regional tickets should be an equal shot for everyone. That includes lawmakers who have yet to prove they can deliver a brighter economic future for Louisiana higher education during the current legislative session.

So, Mr. Senator and Mr. Representative, if you want a pair of tickets to watch the Tigers and Cajuns battle it out, get out there early Saturday afternoon a few of hours ahead of the 7 p.m. first pitch and stick a couple of fingers in the air.

Just like everybody else.