OAKLAND (KCBS) – The Oakland Raiders are covering 11,000 stadium seats with tarps and lowering prices to help sell out more games.

For years, the Oakland A’s have used tarps over much of the stadium’s third level during baseball season to create a more intimate fan experience. The stadium can hold more than 60,000 fans as a football stadium, but when set up for baseball with the tarps, it only holds about 35,000. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, the new capacity for football will be reduced from 64,200 to 53,250.

“It’s to keep the fans coming,” John Madden told the KCBS Radio morning crew. “That’s one of the things that I think the whole NFL is going to be worried about… Television has gotten so good, and it’s so easy to stay home or wherever and watch the game and see it on TV, and be able to watch multiple games, to check your fantasy team, to do all those things… (They need) to make the experience in the stadium better than it is on television. Right now, they’re losing that battle.”

Madden said ticket prices are a problem.

“Going to the stadium has become so expensive that you’re taking a lot of people out of play. It (used to be) a family thing, a mother father and a couple of kids, and you don’t see that much anymore,” he said.

The 49ers coach is among the players at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am this week.

“It’s funny to see Jim Harbaugh,” Madden said. “Just a couple of days ago, he’s coaching the Super Bowl. Now he’s on the practice range hitting balls right next to Bill Belichick.”

A nice diversion for Harbaugh after the Super Bowl loss?

“I don’t know. When you’re in the Super Bowl and you’re at that high, and then you lose that game, man it takes awhile. I don’t know if I could have done it. I don’t know that I’d want to go out (and play.)” (8:50)

Listen to the John Madden segment live weekday mornings at 8:15 on KCBS All News 740 AM/106.9 FM.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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