By Gary K. Johnson
Men’s basketball attendance for all three NCAA divisions during the 2010-11 season equaled 32,820,701, the fifth-highest all-time.
Division I leaders
Division II leaders
Division III leaders
The record is 33,396,316 from the 2008 season.
Division I attendance in 2011 was fourth all-time at 27,626,165 and showed an increase of 86,706 fans from 2010. The record was set in 2008 at 28,135,901. Division II totaled 2,695,025 fans and Division III attracted 1,962,344.
Overall attendance for 2010-11 was down about one-half percent from the previous year.
Kentucky led the nation in home attendance average at 23,603 fans per game. It was the 15th time in the last 16 seasons and the sixth straight year that Wildcat fans led the way. Syracuse was second at 22,312. One of those two schools has led the nation in each of the past 35 seasons.
Louisville took advantage of 21 home games to lead the nation in total home attendance with 458,463 fans. Next was Syracuse (423,924 in 19 games), Kentucky (354,046 in 15), Tennessee (341,130 in 18), Memphis (318,601 in 19) and Ohio State (302,498 in 20).
For all-game attendance – including home, road and neutral site games – Kentucky was tops as 755,748 fans watched the Wildcats over 38 games. Twelve teams played in front more than a half million fans this season.
The Big Ten Conference led the nation for the 35th consecutive year in conference attendance. Its 11 teams totaled 2,475,440 fans and averaged 12,826 per game.
After the Big Ten, the Big East (11,323), Southeastern (11,187), Big 12 (10,716) and Atlantic Coast (10,266) rounded out the top five in conference attendance average per game.
The 16 teams of the Big East totaled 3,170,540 fans, the second most ever for a conference. The record is 3,259,992 by the Big East in 2007.
The top five conferences in average attendance were also the only leagues to total more than 2 million fans each. However, four of the 31 Division I conferences set a league best for total attendance. The four were the Mountain West (previous best was in 2003), West Coast (2010), Mid-Eastern (2003) and Northeast (2000).
Other attendance highlights from 2010-11:
Gary K. Johnson is NCAA associate director of statistics