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Author Topic: Attendance last night  (Read 3357 times)

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Fan701

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #100 on: February 07, 2019, 09:28:14 am »

That only took several hours and unnecessary posts to get to a reasonable common ground.
Ok.  But I think there may have been more common ground than you noticed from the beginning.  You perhaps assumed I was simply trashing your argument. whereas I was just trying to put it into the context of a nationwide trend.  Yes, fan enthusiasm waxes and wanes with the ups and downs of the teams, but these are ups and downs around an overall downtrend nationwide in actual attendance.  Actual attendance to ticket sales ratios are down everywhere as the article cited above makes plain:  https://www.courier-journal.com/story/sports/college/kentucky/2019/01/26/kentucky-basketball-attendance-down-tim-sullivan/2646455002/  In the end, ticket sales do matter since they represent revenue to the athletic department, and they are also a way to compare the size of our fan base to other schools using easily available NCAA data. 
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Atlhogfan1

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #101 on: February 07, 2019, 09:38:45 am »

Ok.  But I think there may have been more common ground than you noticed from the beginning.  You perhaps assumed I was simply trashing your argument. whereas I was just trying to put it into the context of a nationwide trend.  Yes, fan enthusiasm waxes and wanes with the ups and downs of the teams, but these are ups and downs around an overall downtrend nationwide in actual attendance.  Actual attendance to ticket sales ratios are down everywhere as the article cited above makes plain:  https://www.courier-journal.com/story/sports/college/kentucky/2019/01/26/kentucky-basketball-attendance-down-tim-sullivan/2646455002/  In the end, ticket sales do matter since they represent revenue to the athletic department, and they are also a way to compare the size of our fan base to other schools using easily available NCAA data.

The revenue from basketball for us isn't as big of a factor as it once was as it is a much smaller percentage of our intake with the SEC payout and football revenue being what it is nowadays.  $43.1 million payout vs $20.9 million in 2013-14 from the SEC. 
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Fan701

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #102 on: February 07, 2019, 09:47:53 am »

The revenue from basketball for us isn't as big of a factor as it once was as it is a much smaller percentage of our intake with the SEC payout and football revenue being what it is nowadays.  $43.1 million payout vs $20.9 million in 2013-14 from the SEC.
Yes, these days our revenue share from media rights may be as significant as our revenue from ticket sales.  Since people are increasingly inclined to stay home and watch the games, does this mean they lack enthusiasm for the team, or does TV make it easier to follow the team, know the players and maintain enthusiasm?  Not sure of the answer.
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Inhogswetrust

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #103 on: February 07, 2019, 09:58:02 am »

Yes, a little over half a million for the whole MSA, which is about how many live in just my neighborhood in another part of the country.  It ranks way down at around 105th for the country as a whole.  Sorry, but I didn't mean it as an insult.  I'm sure it's a wonderful place to live, just not many people live there.

It ranks #104 out of over 380 designated MSA’s and it keeps growing at a very fast rate relative to others immediately in front of it and will probably move into the top 100 as two of them close to them in the top 100 are losing population and two others aren’t growing nearly as fast.They already rank in the top one third of the largest. There are not many mega MSA’s and those skew the numbers. Heck only about 69 are even over 1,000,000. You would need to define the boundaries of a neighborhood to say a half million live in it.
Also generally speaking most people living in mega sized MSA’s don’t care as much about college sports. It’s the law of big numbers.
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hobhog

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #104 on: February 07, 2019, 10:03:55 am »

If an AD can’t understand the difference between a packed BWA and one that is a third full then he is in wrong profession. Winning would change everything, including fan culture.
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FineAsSwine

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #105 on: February 07, 2019, 10:31:26 am »

If an AD can’t understand the difference between a packed BWA and one that is a third full then he is in wrong profession. Winning would change everything, including fan culture.

But Rupp Arena isn't packed anymore and the Wildcats win plenty. So much narrow minded focus here.
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hobhog

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #106 on: February 07, 2019, 10:36:21 am »

But Rupp Arena isn't packed anymore and the Wildcats win plenty. So much narrow minded focus here.

Wow. Really?!!! Did you just go there?
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Fan701

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #108 on: February 07, 2019, 11:30:44 am »

It ranks #104 out of over 380 designated MSA’s and it keeps growing at a very fast rate relative to others immediately in front of it and will probably move into the top 100 as two of them close to them in the top 100 are losing population and two others aren’t growing nearly as fast.They already rank in the top one third of the largest. There are not many mega MSA’s and those skew the numbers. Heck only about 69 are even over 1,000,000. You would need to define the boundaries of a neighborhood to say a half million live in it.
Also generally speaking most people living in mega sized MSA’s don’t care as much about college sports. It’s the law of big numbers.
Again, I didn't mean to diss NWA, but it is a pretty small MSA, quasi rural, though growing. 
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Hogberry Snortcake

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #109 on: February 07, 2019, 11:37:19 am »

Again, I didn't mean to diss NWA, but it is a pretty small MSA, quasi rural, though growing. 

For what it's worth, I wish most of them would go back to where they came from.  Nothing personal, just too many people. 
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gchamblee

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #110 on: February 07, 2019, 02:56:06 pm »

I have no way of proving this but I do believe basketball has been affected by other sports. I think people paint our programs with a brush. Most fans don't watch baseball, but then tuned into for the CWS and the most devastating loss possible. The football season was a disaster. I think people are just disappointed by the Razorbacks in general.

Not easy to be a fan of the major sports right now.

I disagree. I have no difficulty at all being a fan of anything razorback related, including the major sports. I think the problem with newer generation fans is the lack of dedication. There is a certain level of fan maturity that is required in order to cope with both success and disappointment in competitive sports. It seems like newer generation fans for all schools feel that if they arent winning something meaningful there is no benefit to being emotionally invested in the team. I always viewed these fans as fair weather fans, but there has been a movement to relabel those fans so that they feel more relevant and less marginalized. Now fair weather fans are calling themselves "realists" and "those that demand better".

There are 347 division 1 mens basketball teams. To be one of the 64 to make the field of the tourney is an accomplishment. Demanding to be sweet 16 is ludicrous, but wanting to be and hoping to be are the essence of rooting for your team to do something. If all 347 schools decided that its sweet 16 or we are firing our coach the coaching turnover at the end of the season would be more entertaining than the season itself. However, I do agree that if it is obvious that level of success is impossible and you feel it should be then replacing your coach makes perfect sense.

As for CMA, ignoring context is a lazy way to push an agenda. I keep seeing "8 years and we suck" but we really don't. I keep reading how we cant get past the second round but it is always by people who refuse to acknowledge that we probably had the national champion beat if not for the refs actively screwing us at the end of the game. Those who want him fired blame him for things that are out of his control constantly, while refusing him any credit for the good. We win, its because the players bailed him out.. we lose its because he cant coach. I think he can get us there and I think he is loaded with very young talent right now. I think we are seeing them grow up this year and good things will happen with them. But Im just a guy ruining our program because I accept mediocrity, so what do I know.

If you want to have an honest discussion about whether or not he should be fired, at the very least you should start with being honest. Blaming him for screw jobs by the refs, players missing wide open desirable shots and dropping passes that hit them in the face is not being honest lol. Blaming him for a national trend in attendance is also not being honest.

Dwight_K_Shrute

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #111 on: February 07, 2019, 03:31:20 pm »

This is 110% accurate, and then some ...

I was not in Fayetteville for Vandy, but have covered the Hogs at BWA all season and it is bizarre that the athletic department has not gotten its arms around the "scanned tickets" numbers because they have been way off and way under without fail each and every game.

In the past when they used "estimated actual attendance", I always thought they estimated a bit high -- not a lot, but maybe a tad high. But the "scanned tickets" are several thousand off and always much less than butts in seats. I've covered Hogs basketball on and off since the late 80s/early 90s, so I've been in BWA either as a fan or on media row since BWA opened, but in general regardless of venue I have a feel within a few hundred what the actual numbers likely are.

This season with the "scanned tickets" reporting, I kept thinking to myself that it was way off but did not say anything in the media room until other media members started talking about it, then I chimed in that I thought it was bizarre. Crazy to think the AD's office is okay underselling -- by a lot -- actual butts in seats. Surely they see the same things we do.

I'm going to ask someone at UA about this by the next home game. I've been curious all season how they are okay with shorting the announced attendance numbers.

Kevin, definitely appreciate if you would ask because it is odd.  I've been to several home games this year and thought the same thing.  Is attendance great?  No, but there were definitely more than 6k there for the Vandy game and Georgia as well. I've seen Mike Irwin say the same thing.

 It's just weird that they would continually under report when it's usually in a departments best interest to be accurate or fudge to the positive side. 

Hogmatic

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #112 on: February 07, 2019, 05:19:01 pm »

Also, a comparison of tickets sold now against most other schools' past ticket sales numbers will show a decline, too.  We are far from unique.  Nationwide, attendance as measured by ticket sales is down about 15% from 1995.  By comparison, Arkansas attendance as measured by ticket sales is down about 19% from 1995, but, of course, 1995 was a banner year for attendance since we were reigning national champions.  Compared to 2001, a year with Joe Johnson and of comparable success to last year, attendance as measured by ticket sales was almost identical:  16,181 per game last year vs. 16,225 in 2001, whereas over that period nationwide average attendance declined about 9%.  Arkansas really has a great fan base, and they still buy tickets.

Nobody in their right mind thinks our ticket sales are only down by 19% compared to 1995 when half the arena is empty now.  You have no credibility and show how far you will go to protect Mike.
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hawg66

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #113 on: February 07, 2019, 06:40:04 pm »

Nobody in their right mind thinks our ticket sales are only down by 19% compared to 1995 when half the arena is empty now.  You have no credibility and show how far you will go to protect Mike.
Nobody in their right mind argues with simple arithmetic. You’re making your UA diploma look bad

Fan701

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #114 on: February 07, 2019, 06:48:29 pm »

Nobody in their right mind thinks our ticket sales are only down by 19% compared to 1995 when half the arena is empty now.  You have no credibility and show how far you will go to protect Mike.
Go complain to the NCAA.  Those numbers come straight from them.
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razorback1829

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #115 on: February 07, 2019, 07:58:16 pm »

If an AD can’t understand the difference between a packed BWA and one that is a third full then he is in wrong profession. Winning would change everything, including fan culture.

For a couple of games. Hog fans are like the rest at the minute. Sorry if anybody takes it personally, but being at the games as long as I have been going, you can feel the shift.
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razorback1829

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #116 on: February 07, 2019, 08:00:00 pm »

Nobody in their right mind thinks our ticket sales are only down by 19% compared to 1995 when half the arena is empty now.  You have no credibility and show how far you will go to protect Mike.

LOL he gave you real numbers and you can’t believe it because of your bias. But you’ll come on here and speak as if you’re a Razorback fan. Just simply not the case. You’ve beeen figured out.
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Hogmatic

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #117 on: February 07, 2019, 09:00:57 pm »

Ok so I don't agree with your numbers because they don't make sense and any data can be twisted.  You little MA lovers have twisted data and stories before so I don't trust you.  For one, what are those numbers based on Season tickets, scanned, all tickets sold, etc. 

Where is the link to the NCAA data that you found this?
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Hogmatic

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #118 on: February 07, 2019, 09:23:09 pm »

Nobody in their right mind argues with simple arithmetic. You’re making your UA diploma look bad

This is one of many reasons besides the eye test in BWA that make me laugh at your numbers.  This article from 2013 says there has a 62% decline in attendance from the first season in BWA. 

http://www.uatrav.com/sports/article_a0dd2b22-6693-11e3-b61b-0019bb30f31a.html
Empty seats at Bud Walton Arena have become commonplace in recent years, as attendance has dropped 62.5 percent since the 1993-94 season, when it opened.  This season alone, attendance is down nearly 20 percent from last year through six games, with less than 5,559 people attending per game.

https://247sports.com/college/arkansas/Bolt/SIU-coach-calls-out-small-crowd-48995288/
He isn't the first coach in recent years to call out Arkansas' crowd, which has fallen off dramatically since the new millennium. The Razorbacks haven't cracked the national top 10 in attendance since 2008 and from 2010-2014, they were ranked no higher than 20th.

When Arkansas beat SMU on Nov. 18, 2013, in front of 8,927 fans, legendary head coach Larry Brown said, "No offense to Arkansas, but I've been in loud buildings. I was in Barnhill. You talk about a loud building..."


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razorback1829

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #119 on: February 07, 2019, 09:31:15 pm »

This is one of many reasons besides the eye test in BWA that make me laugh at your numbers.  This article from 2013 says there has a 62% decline in attendance from the first season in BWA. 

http://www.uatrav.com/sports/article_a0dd2b22-6693-11e3-b61b-0019bb30f31a.html
Empty seats at Bud Walton Arena have become commonplace in recent years, as attendance has dropped 62.5 percent since the 1993-94 season, when it opened.  This season alone, attendance is down nearly 20 percent from last year through six games, with less than 5,559 people attending per game.

https://247sports.com/college/arkansas/Bolt/SIU-coach-calls-out-small-crowd-48995288/
He isn't the first coach in recent years to call out Arkansas' crowd, which has fallen off dramatically since the new millennium. The Razorbacks haven't cracked the national top 10 in attendance since 2008 and from 2010-2014, they were ranked no higher than 20th.

When Arkansas beat SMU on Nov. 18, 2013, in front of 8,927 fans, legendary head coach Larry Brown said, "No offense to Arkansas, but I've been in loud buildings. I was in Barnhill. You talk about a loud building..."


He gave you national numbers and look how hard you reach... keep tryin my man.
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Hogmatic

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #120 on: February 07, 2019, 09:51:39 pm »

19,368, which is the fifth largest for an on-campus arena in the Nation.

Season   Record           SEC           Attend   game    Rank Nation
1993–94   16–0            8–0           322,146   20,134   4th
               
1994–95   14–1 (.933)   7–1 (.875)   301,212   20,081   4th
               
1995–96   14–4 (.778)   6–2 (.750)   346,698   19,261   5th
1996–97   15–3 (.833)   6–2 (.750)   329,540   18,308   5th
1997–98   15–0 (1.000)   8–0           291,089   19,406   4th
1998–99   14–2 (.875)   6–2 (.750)   292,704   18,294   5th
1999–00   9–5  (.643)   5–3 (.625)   249,300   17,807   6th
2000–01   16–2 (.889)   7–1 (.875)   292,057   16,225   9th
2001–02   11–5 (.688)   5–3 (.625)   241,033   15,065   13th
2002–03   8–8 (.500)           3–5 (.375)   236,638   14,790   14th
2003–04   10–6 (.625)   4–4 (.500)   236,676   14,792   13th
2004–05   13–3 (.813)   5–3 (.625)   252,608   15,788   9th
2005–06   15–1 (.938)   7–1 (.875)   239,336   14,958   12th
2006–07   13–3 (.813)   5–3 (.625)   267,520   16,720   9th
2007–08   15–1 (.938)   7–1 (.875)   274,360   17,148   8th
2008–09   12–6 (.667)   2–6 (.250)   288,781   16,043   11th
2009–10   11–8 (.579)   5–3 (.625)   256,667   13,509   17th
2010–11   15–3 (.833)   5–3 (.625)   216,999   12,055   29th
2011–12   17–3 (.850)   5–3 (.625)   262,329   13,116   23rd
2012–13   17–1 (.944)   9–0          252,857   14,047   17th
2013–14   17–2 (.895)   7–2 (.778)   280,465   14,023   10th
2014–15   16–2 (.889)   7–2 (.778)   283,485   15,749   11th
2015–16   13–4 (.765)   6–3 (.667)   258,705   15,217   12th

Totals     316–73 (.812)  135–53 (.718)  6,273,705  16,197   Avg. Rank: 11th

These numbers are from the Wikipedia page for BWA. Attendance numbers are down at least 24.5 % from 1993 to 2015.  This still doesn't make sense because BWA is half full or less for most games.   The attendance numbers must be based on season tickets?  Because there are not this many people in BWA the last few years.   Very odd indeed.   We have the 5th largest on campus arena but our attendance national rank has dropped from #4 to #12 which is more indicative of the drop in butts in seats.
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Hogmatic

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #121 on: February 07, 2019, 09:56:38 pm »

He gave you national numbers and look how hard you reach... keep tryin my man.

All he has to do is provide a link to the NCAA data he used.   I think the figures from 93 to 15 are probably the same ones the UofA submitted to the NCAA.   The no shows of season tickets and unsold seats provide a visual in BWA that does not match these numbers.  These numbers fit your agenda but they are Season tickets/sold tickets....not attendance/butts in seats.
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razorback1829

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #122 on: February 07, 2019, 10:06:32 pm »

All he has to do is provide a link to the NCAA data he used.   I think the figures from 93 to 15 are probably the same ones the UofA submitted to the NCAA.   The no shows of season tickets and unsold seats provide a visual in BWA that does not match these numbers.  These numbers fit your agenda but they are Season tickets/sold tickets....not attendance/butts in seats.

Your arm is out of your socket the way your trying to reach your pint 🤣🤣🤣 I’m laughing out loud really hard. Simple things ya know?
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gchamblee

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #123 on: February 07, 2019, 10:18:20 pm »

All he has to do is provide a link to the NCAA data he used.   I think the figures from 93 to 15 are probably the same ones the UofA submitted to the NCAA.   The no shows of season tickets and unsold seats provide a visual in BWA that does not match these numbers.  These numbers fit your agenda but they are Season tickets/sold tickets....not attendance/butts in seats.

Ok, so your point is attendance is down. Comparing attendance numbers from today to an era when there was no SEC Network AND we were a final 4 calibur team, also ignoring national trends for attendance... What is the bigger point you are trying to make? It would save everybody lots of time and lots of back and forth if you would just make that point and be done with it. You are debating this like you are on a religious mission, so what is it?
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hawgfan4life

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #124 on: February 07, 2019, 10:25:01 pm »

Holy crap!  Attendance is down for almost all programs in recent years.  Arkansas likely has opportunity and reason to be down more than many without factoring in the success of the team.  If head coaches are going to be fired because attendance is down from what it was a few years ago, there are a lot of coaches about to be fired that are considered to be great coaches and that are really good basketball schools.

Can't let logic and facts get in the way of bashing the coach and build up the case to fire him at the end of the season.
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Fan701

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #125 on: February 08, 2019, 06:15:14 am »

All he has to do is provide a link to the NCAA data he used.   I think the figures from 93 to 15 are probably the same ones the UofA submitted to the NCAA.   The no shows of season tickets and unsold seats provide a visual in BWA that does not match these numbers.  These numbers fit your agenda but they are Season tickets/sold tickets....not attendance/butts in seats.
I have no idea what my agenda is supposed to be.  I just went to a reliable website and looked at the data.  I used the raw numbers for ticket sales for 1995, 2001, and 2018 and calculated the percentage change over time both nationally and for Arkansas, a calculation that I don't think has an agenda.  I had no idea you couldn't just Google this information yourself, but here is the link.  http://www.ncaa.org/championships/statistics/ncaa-mens-basketball-attendance  BTW, there is no one who argues that actual attendance is exactly the same as tickets sold, but that is true for every program, not just us.  What you'd have to prove is that the ratio of actual attendance compared to ticket sales has declined at Arkansas faster than it has everywhere else, and particularly fast during the Mike Anderson era.  I don't think there is a shred of evidence for this claim.  On the contrary, at least in terms of ticket sales, there has been a big improvement.  Between 2010 and 2018 ticket sales for Arkansas basketball increased right at 23%, which is pretty substantial.
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Hogmatic

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #126 on: February 08, 2019, 07:05:21 am »

The thread is about attendance and you posted ticket sales.  I have said repeatedly our attendance has dropped from where it was in the early day.   I am speaking about attendance but you keep harping about ticket sales.  As I stated just a few posts above, "The no shows of season tickets and unsold seats provide a visual in BWA that does not match these numbers.  These numbers fit your agenda but they are Season tickets/sold tickets....not attendance/butts in seats."   

You don't want to talk about the ATTENDANCE because it looks bad for Mike.  It is obvious that you won't admit it.  The boosters and AD see what others see -empty seats and that is all that matters.  I am tired of this crap- you guys can think you won but the EMPTY SEATS will rule the day.
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Fan701

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #127 on: February 08, 2019, 07:56:15 am »

The thread is about attendance and you posted ticket sales.  I have said repeatedly our attendance has dropped from where it was in the early day.   I am speaking about attendance but you keep harping about ticket sales.  As I stated just a few posts above, "The no shows of season tickets and unsold seats provide a visual in BWA that does not match these numbers.  These numbers fit your agenda but they are Season tickets/sold tickets....not attendance/butts in seats."   

You don't want to talk about the ATTENDANCE because it looks bad for Mike.  It is obvious that you won't admit it.  The boosters and AD see what others see -empty seats and that is all that matters.  I am tired of this crap- you guys can think you won but the EMPTY SEATS will rule the day.
Again, ticket sales are not the same as actual attendance, but they are highly correlated. Actual attendance relative to ticket sales has declined nationwide.  What you'd have to prove is that the ratio of actual attendance compared to ticket sales has declined at Arkansas faster than it has everywhere else, and particularly fast during the Mike Anderson era.  I don't think there is a shred of evidence for this claim. 
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Atlhogfan1

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #128 on: February 08, 2019, 08:22:47 am »

Again, ticket sales are not the same as actual attendance, but they are highly correlated. Actual attendance relative to ticket sales has declined nationwide.  What you'd have to prove is that the ratio of actual attendance compared to ticket sales has declined at Arkansas faster than it has everywhere else, and particularly fast during the Mike Anderson era.  I don't think there is a shred of evidence for this claim.

The UA doesn't publish actual attendance in the boxscores before the 13-14 season.  Unless they tracked it somewhere and it can be found and published, then there won't be the evidence you insist on seeing.  Based on the numbers the UA has published since then, the UA averages 5,000+ no shows per game.  I doubt though anyone will take the time to compare that to other programs. 
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Fan701

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #129 on: February 08, 2019, 08:35:44 am »

The UA doesn't publish actual attendance in the boxscores before the 13-14 season.  Unless they tracked it somewhere and it can be found and published, then there won't be the evidence you insist on seeing.  Based on the numbers the UA has published since then, the UA averages 5,000+ no shows per game.  I doubt though anyone will take the time to compare that to other programs.
I think you're right, and that's the reason I used ticket sales.  We have a lot of data on that going back many years from the NCAA, and it's reasonable to assume that ticket sales and actual attendance are highly, though not perfectly, correlated.  We also know, at least anecdotally, that actual attendance has declined everywhere as the games have been more and more easily accessible on TV or online.  We know that the same has happened at Arkansas as more people, even if they have tickets, choose to stay home and watch on TV.  What we don't know, and what I think is doubtful, is that this gap between actual attendance and ticket sales had widened more and faster at Arkansas than elsewhere.  We do know that ticket sales have gone up sharply since 2010, by 23%, but that might or might not mean 23% more actual people in the stands.
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Fan701

Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #130 on: February 08, 2019, 09:09:48 am »

The UA doesn't publish actual attendance in the boxscores before the 13-14 season.  Unless they tracked it somewhere and it can be found and published, then there won't be the evidence you insist on seeing.  Based on the numbers the UA has published since then, the UA averages 5,000+ no shows per game.  I doubt though anyone will take the time to compare that to other programs.
BTW, I'm not "insisting" on seeing any evidence since I agree with you that it would probably take lots of work to come up with it. All I do insist on is that people who have no evidence, like you-know-who above, not argue as if they do.  If we don't know, we just don't know.  Besides, when you don't know the exact answer, it's usually best, at least as a first approximation, to assume that you're probably somewhere near the average, so, unless someone has compelling evidence to do otherwise, I'm going to assume that our decline in actual attendance relative to ticket sales is probably somewhere around the national average.
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Inhogswetrust

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Re: Attendance last night
« Reply #131 on: February 08, 2019, 11:27:49 am »

Again, I didn't mean to diss NWA, but it is a pretty small MSA, quasi rural, though growing. 

What part of ranking in the top third largest at #104 do you not understand. If you think 500,000 is pretty small you’re wrong. One doesn’t have to live in a place over 5,000,000 much less even 1,000,000 to be a good sized MSA. Just because an MSA doesn’t have tall buildings upon tall buildings you urbanites like doesn’t make it rural or pretty small. Heck I live about 10 miles from downtown Memphis and the MSA here is over 1,000,000 and there is countryside literally right around the corner. We are getting ready to build a house literally on the edge of a suburb in one of those “quasi rural” areas and its almost smack the middle of the MSA. Same county as Memphis but not in any city limits. Just because an MSA doesn’t have multiple sky scrapers doesn’t make it rural. You are talking about density which is not the same as overall population. What definition would you give for an MSA to be considered “pretty small” as you describe? I don’t consider the #104th largest  and in the top third overall of ALL MSA’s to be “pretty small”. As mentioned the megalopolises skew the numbers.
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