Home games of the Football Bowl Subdivision got an average crowd of 43,483 spectators per match, which is 4% lesser than 2013’s figure. According to an analysis of attendance to NCAA games by CBSSports.com, it is the lowest figure after 2000’s average crowd of 42,631. The strength of crowds has been below 46,000 for the past six seasons after reaching a peak of 46,456 in 2008.
The CBSSports.com analysis has taken into account data related only to home games.
This year, six new FBS teams submitted their attendance figures to the NCAA for the first time. These new schools are Old Dominion, Georgia Southern, Appalachian State, Charlotte, Texas San Antonio, and Georgia State. Even if these teams are not taken into consideration, the average crowd strength for FBS schools will be 44,544, the lowest after 2002.
On the brighter side, 75% of the 25 college football teams that get top attendance have either attracted larger crowds or retained their crowd size. But on the downside, only 48% of the other teams could succeed in maintaining the crowd average. The worst news is that crowds to smaller conference schools have been steadily declining.
The Power Five schools that reported the highest increase in crowd average were Maryland, LSU, Texas A&M, Rutgers, Florida State, Mississippi State, and ULCA. The Power Five schools that reported the largest declines were Purdue, Virginia, Pittsburgh, Arizona State, Kansas, and Oklahoma State.