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Thread: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

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    What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    Watching the Appalachian State vs. Troy game this weekend and I was struck by how many fans were in attendance. The stands looked packed and according to this article it was the 4th largest crowd in the history of their stadium. App State shares a lot of similarities with us. Both are situated in rural college towns of similar sizes. Both playing in G5 divisions, although App State is in the mighty Sunbelt. Both teams have had a run of successful seasons, although they have been better, record-wise. (yes, our last two season weren't that great, but we weren't exactly packing the house before then, either.)

    What are they doing that we aren't that results in such a big home crowd? What can we do as a university to get butts in the seats? I understand that today's college football is more about TV deals than it is about home attendance as far as money going to your football program, but there's something to be said about people actually wanting to come to your games and the gameday atmosphere on Saturday if there is a large crowd.

    Bear in mind that I don't know much about App State. Maybe they consider Troy the bitterest of rivals? I guess they just moved up to FBS in the past 10 years. Is it the newness of FBS combined with their success? Troy and App State are about 7 hours apart so its not exactly LA Tech vs ULM (i.e. the geographic closeness driving attendance.) I know Gameday being there had a lot to do with it, but apparently they are also routinely among Sun Belt leaders in attendance.

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    Winning will solve a lot of this. Winning some games that we should not win and win all of those that we should of won. We have not done that and the attendance has decreased year over year. To me, winning would be the quickest fix.

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    App State has benefitted from from short-term success and long-term effort.

    First, App State beat A$M (edit) last week. That was huge.

    Second, ESPN Gameday was there on Saturday. That was huge.

    Third, App State had an attractive season ticket package with UNC playing there to start off the season. They often have P5 schools at home. ... Tech on the other hand, is shying away from it.

    Fourth, the App State administration is and has been busting its tail to build a winner and capitalizing on success/opportunities. They strive to win conference championships, and laugh if you want, they strive to win the national championship. ... Tech's administration, on the other hand, historically does not capitalize on momentum and has often taken the easy/lazy road. If it were not for the heat by fans and donors, Dr. Guice would have been more than happy to give us another year of Skippy ball.

    Having said that, hiring Cumbie appears to be a good move (as have most, if not all, of Dr. Wood's hires), but at the end of the day, it will depend on whether or not Dr. Guice will allow success to flourish and spread or if he will revert to the mentality that bowl games are good enough in an age in which bowls games really do not mean much.

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brad View Post
    App State has benefitted from from short-term success and long-term effort.

    First, App State beat Notre Dame last week. That was huge.

    Second, ESPN Gameday was there on Saturday. That was huge.

    Third, App State had an attractive season ticket package with UNC playing there to start off the season. They often have P5 schools at home. ... Tech on the other hand, is shying away from it.

    .
    And the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor!

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    Another factor worth adding in is that North Carolina has 7 Div 1 football schools whereas Louisiana has 10. So, fundamentally divide the state into fan based areas and our piece of the pie is smaller to begin with. IF there wasnít a Grambling, ULM or Northwestern in Techís immediate area I think you could maybe automatically add at least 5,000 to Techís fan base. Now granted thatís never going to happen so the expectations have to be less from the very start. Having said thatÖ a winning team and entertaining style of game will put butts in the seats if Tech doesnít price the fans out of coming. I gave up my parking passes years ago because they were way over priced. Tech has to be real about what their product is worth and thatís even more true with the value of the dollar shrinking hand over fist.

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    Winning will solve a lot. However, I have heard from a lot of people that good tailgate arrangements, better game day, and an exciting product are up there with winning. Also, good rivalries where our opponents travel as well as we tend to would help.

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    Rivalries is a very interesting and important consideration, but seemingly irrelevant since for many years Tech has tried to distance themselves from neighborly rivalries. When you think youíre too good for ULM, Ark St., ULL and then alienate N. Tex, USMÖ etc, etc, etc youíre kind of left with playing distant schools that nobody really cares about. This mess of a big picture situation that Tech is in is all of their own doing.

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    Is it really of OUR own doing though? I think Tech has burned bridges, but it wasn’t Tom the Ticket Holder who did that. It was people who were supposed to have vision and lead up to the mountain top. Instead, we have been brought to the Dead Sea and told to drink our fill.

    I think most fans would be happy with a rotation of ULL, USM, ULM, and Ark St as non conference regulars.

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    1. More important than actually winning is the product our coach puts on the field. That product was inconsistent and not fun to watch from 2013 to 2021. 9 years of boredom will kill attendance...

    2. ...especially when you have an AD and president who think they can treat our students and fans like we are an SEC program. Grass roots efforts by our fans were destroyed after 2012.

    3. Ticket prices are ridiculous. We don't have the product to charge this much in this demographic. ZERO marketing has been done to encourage attendance. Family of four = $200 plus. No way!!!
    HCSH cumulative point differential by quarter:

    231 522 654 -54

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    App state is FUN to watch play football.

    Thatís it.

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dixonfor6 View Post
    App state is FUN to watch play football.

    That’s it.
    That was my #1
    HCSH cumulative point differential by quarter:

    231 522 654 -54

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    You have to be relevant. When we played Hawaii, Boise, A&M, Miss. St. in close games the fan base was energized. Home games against SFA, NSU, and our current conference schedule don’t create much excitement. It’s all about vision and scheduling… areas we have struggled.

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    An economy thatís not in the toilet would be a big help. Not a lot of disposable income floating around North Louisiana these days.
    A better on the field product (which Iím optimistic Cumbie is in the process of building) will help, but only so much.

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    Quote Originally Posted by dawg80 View Post
    And the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor!

    Damn! I must have suffered a heat stroke in Phoenix over the weekend.

    App State over A$M.

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    Re: What will it take to drive game attendance up?

    FUN is the key for sure but the football being played is just one part.

    As others have mentioned though, the cost, the ambience and the ease of doing things are just as important. We could have amazing football, great tailgaiting but if it's too expensive to attend the game, you're going to turn away a lot of attendees.

    We also need to promote better student involvement. Around Dykes reign, there were lots of initiatives for student tailgating and attendance. I remember the ATF being a problem then also so that would need to be avoided. Students are your future donors and fans and if you turn them away, then you're ruining an investment.

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