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Thursday, January 6, 2011
Ticket sales for BCS title game halted

Associated Press

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- StubHub suspended sales of tickets to Monday's BCS title game because of a seller who did not have enough tickets to fill orders.

On Wednesday night, the secondary ticket marketplace removed all tickets to the game between No. 1 Auburn and second-ranked Oregon from its website. On Thursday, the company sent out e-mails to fans who had already purchased tickets, offering them a full refund and an additional payment of twice the ticket price.

For example, if a fan paid $1,000 for a ticket, StubHub offered to refund the $1,000, as well as an additional $2,000 for the ticket.

StubHub spokeswomen Joellen Ferrer said it appears that the website has enough takers to satisfy the orders that could not be filled. The San Francisco-based company, a division of eBay, says it will bill the seller for the extra costs.

"We wanted to make sure we made good on all of our transactions," Ferrer said.

Ferrer said it looked as though the site might make tickets for the event available again over the weekend. In addition, the company will have representatives in Arizona on game day to handle any issues that may arise.

StubHub is not a ticket broker, but an online platform for others to sell tickets. Nothing like this had ever happened before, Ferrer said.

This season's national championship game is the top-selling event in company history, she said.

StubHub carefully screens its sellers and it did not appear that the seller in question, who was not identified, was trying to scam customers. Rather, the seller simply was overwhelmed by the demand and not able to secure the number of tickets that were needed.

Tickets for the game were selling for well above the face values of $300 and $325. On Wednesday, individual seats were going for as much as $8,691.