For those of us who could not have afforded tickets while in school, it was a fantastic approach. Subsidized by the students who didn't want to go, rolled into student loans.
If UVA had a student season ticket package, like a lot of schools do, I'd probably have tried to bum extras from alums in the parking lot and then, if successful, met up with friends on the hill. But I think, more realistically, pregame parties would have become gameday parties, and I wouldn't have gone.
I couldn't tell you whether the specific fee amount makes sense these days. My vague memory of 20 years ago is that the fee wasn't large enough to matter, but no shortage of people complained. Maybe they're gotten ridiculous.