Duke Women’s Basketball Dean’s Challenge


Overview: An engaging competition built around ticket sales and attendance put on by the Duke Women’s Basketball program and facilitated by the Duke Athletics Ticket Sales Team and the Duke Athletics Marketing Team.  The idea is to drive ticket sales and attendance for our rivalry game against UNC each year while allowing the schools to support the athletics department in friendly competition.

As a campus community here at Duke University, the Dean’s Challenge offers all of the participating schools a chance to come together for a Women’s Basketball game at Cameron Indoor Stadium and to foster fellowship and camaraderie.  This experience is just as important to our student-athletes, as the team feeds off of the crowd’s energy, recruiting benefits from large and enthusiastic crowds and lifelong memories are created as part of their student experience.


Prize Available: For the school that obtains the most Dean’s Challenge points, a Trophy as well as lunch with the women’s basketball team* is up for grabs. The trophy is presented on-court at halftime of the game with the winning school then keeping the trophy on display for the duration of the year until the next year’s competition.

*For lunch, we will either have the team hand-deliver lunch to the department or invite the department  to come eat lunch with the team. This prize is new to the program and it will be the first year we activate. We are waiting to finalize the budget for this particular program.


Who Participates: We openly invite all on-campus schools (both graduate and undergraduate) to participate.  Prior participants include …

  • College of Arts & Sciences
  • College of Engineering
  • School of Environment
  • School of Public Policy
  • Divinity School
  • School of Law
  • School of Business
  • School of Nursing
  • School of Medicine


Dean’s Challenge Rules/Points:

  • Number of tickets purchased
    1. Size of department/school taken into consideration
    2. Redemption rates also taken into consideration
  • Pre-game promotion
    1. Signage throughout buildings, emails promoting the event to faculty & staff
  • In-game Spirit
    1. signs, t-shirts, pom-poms
  • Bonus Points are also available
    1. Pre-game tailgate/hospitality
    2. In-game activation – videos promoting their own school can academia
    3. Winning in-game activities
      1. In-game contests like potato sack race or three-legged race
      2. Loudest cheering section


Results: Since inception 10 years ago, the challenge has sold over 10,000 women’s basketball group tickets for over $70,000. Across the last three seasons, the Dean’s Challenge has sold over 3,500 group tickets for over $25,000 in revenue.  All results are strictly for women’s basketball and do not reflect any cross-promotion or cross-sell of football or any other ticketed sports.


What Everyone Has to Say:

                – “Thank you, thank you, thank you!!  I wanted you to see how important what you coordinated yesterday was.  Yesterday’s event meant so much to the staff in A&S.  There were so many children who came and had a good time.  And, there were many people who said they had never been in Cameron before.  Many people see Cameron on TV but never get to go inside.  I am so glad we could make this opportunity available to them. I can’t thank you enough for all your efforts.” – Mary J, Coordinator for Trinity School of Arts and Sciences

                – “Every part of the day was wonderful. From the ease of parking and getting a lift to the stadium, including the delicious and beautiful lunch, and ending with the exciting and well-played game. Those ladies sure hit the floor ready to play. Thank you for putting the event on and for taking such amazing care of me and my group!” – Mindy S, attendee with Trinity School of Arts and Sciences

                – “The Deans Challenge has been a tremendous success in helping to create a topnotch in-game atmosphere for our women’s basketball program. The ability to foster cross campus relationships to create a competitive advantage for a huge rivalry match-up, make all of the difference to our program. Not only does it impact the basketball program but it also impacts the departments that we work with, to give them an opportunity to attend a game with fellow colleagues and classmates. This is an event we look forward to hosting each and every year.” -Meagan Arce, Duke Sports Marketing


For more information on the Duke Women’s Basketball Dean’s Challenge, please reach out to Bradley Reynolds at [email protected].