Boyd's World-> Breadcrumbs Back to Omaha-> Some Notes on Attendance About the author, Boyd Nation

Some Notes on Attendance

Publication Date: August 16, 2005

So, Who Showed Up?

Every year, the NCAA releases a list of the top attendance average and total figures for the previous season. The list is occasionally interesting, but mostly it amounts to a listing of who was able to sell the most season tickets the last year, with repeat offenders usually taking the top spots. This year's isn't out yet, but I've run through my box score archive and come up with some things that I think are a bit on the interesting side, since I think they better reflect both actual interest in the team and give some context to that interest. Not all box scores have attendance figures given, and not all games have available box scores, but I have figures for about 94%, which should give us some accurate readings. On the other hand, that means the numbers here probably won't match any official figures.

We'll start off with the obvious one. Here are the top 25 in average home attendance:

Ave. G  Team

7325 36 Louisiana State
6685 28 Arkansas
6019 33 Mississippi State
5918 25 Texas A&M
5224 41 Texas
4964 35 Nebraska
4362 39 Mississippi
4048 32 Clemson
4039 37 Florida State
3915 35 Alabama
3643 38 Wichita State
3448 37 Tulane
3423 33 South Carolina
3245 27 East Carolina
3219 34 Southern Mississippi
3055 35 Baylor
3020 35 Auburn
3010 32 Rice
2727 36 Hawaii
2654 32 Arizona State
2607 43 Florida
2570 18 Ohio State
2360 32 Texas Tech
2345 37 Miami, Florida
2252 37 Cal State Fullerton

Note that Mark Johnson still lost his job after finishing fourth on this list; it may be harder sometimes when everyone's actually paying attention.

Now, a number that you don't see much of, but which may be more telling. The top 25 in average road attendance:

Ave. G  Team

4325 22 Texas
4233 21 Louisiana State
4225 18 Kentucky
4127 23 Auburn
4086 19 Mississippi
3936 21 Alabama
3865 24 South Carolina
3805 18 Florida
3329 20 Oklahoma
3265 20 Mississippi State
3254 19 Vanderbilt
3217 17 Oklahoma State
3155 17 Kansas State
3143 20 Miami, Florida
3105 19 Missouri
2744 23 Rice
2686 19 Tennessee
2653 16 North Carolina
2640 22 Arizona State
2629 23 Baylor
2530 26 Clemson
2514 23 Georgia
2470 29 Arkansas
2426 22 Alabama-Birmingham
2401 18 Nebraska

The main lesson from this list (UAB?) is that you should go play in front of big crowds. Kentucky managed this by playing in the SEC, for example; several others of these played in front of much larger crowds on the road than at home. From a recruiting and program-building point of view, this may not be a bad thing.

Finally, a number that I really like, since it adjusts for the schedule. These are the top 25 teams by the average percentage of average home attendance for the teams road opponents (in other words, more than two-and-a-half times as many people as normal showed up for a game when LSU was in town this year):

  %   Team

256.0 Louisiana State
218.5 Notre Dame
200.2 Cal State Fullerton
199.5 Miami, Florida
192.5 South Carolina
188.7 Texas
161.5 Tulane
159.9 Florida State
159.8 Clemson
155.8 Arkansas
154.9 Texas A&M
154.8 Wichita State
152.3 Michigan
147.0 Mississippi
142.8 East Carolina
140.9 Minnesota
138.7 North Carolina
138.2 Tennessee
137.0 Missouri
134.5 Arizona
134.3 Florida
133.6 Auburn
131.5 The Citadel
130.3 North Carolina-Wilmington
128.9 Arizona State

Now, some of this is really fun. Obviously, LSU travels well, but who would have figured that Notre Dame could get folks to come out? Well, average attendance for Irish road games was only 1140, but their opponents only managed around 500 in average attendance, so they were worth having in.

If you're interested in reprinting this or any other Boyd's World material for your publication or Web site, please read the reprint policy and contact me


Boyd's World-> Breadcrumbs Back to Omaha-> Some Notes on Attendance About the author, Boyd Nation