Sports Biz with Darren Rovell

Rites of Spring: College Football Games

College Football

I love spring college football games. They are literally the worst games to go to. Yet, this Saturday, I am flying from New York to Chicago to watch my Northwestern Wildcats play themselves in the ceremonial final spring practice?

Why? Well, it's because I'm like most rabid college football fans -- we can't wait for the season and the spring game is the best thing we can get until August.

What's amazing about spring football games is the attendance at some of these things. Again, this is because the game is so bad.

Let's go over the details. Your team is playing itself. No one is really trying hard. And there's no one to root against.

And last spring at Alabama, 92,138 people came out to watch.

People always seem to think that attendance at spring games is some sort of indicator as to how crazy the fan base is for a team. So I thought it would be interesting to look at the box scores and stories and put together a small list of spring game crowds from games played so far this year:

Nebraska: 80,149

Ohio State: 76,346

Penn State: 73,000

Florida: 60,000

LSU: 33,624

Virginia Tech: 30,000

Michigan State: 27,000

Missouri: 26,322

Oklahoma: 23,306

Wisconsin: 22,000

West Virginia: 18,000



Illinois: 12,531

Kansas: 7,500

Idaho: 5,100

Utah: 4,500

Arizona State: 3,000

I’m surprised that Idaho, which finished the season 1-11 and 0-8 in the WAC, outdrew Arizona State, which went 10-3 and was the co-champion of the Pac-10. Oklahoma’s numbers look low to me as well.

Questions?  Comments?