UK Men's Basketball

Kentucky again leads nation in basketball attendance

Fans in the E-Rupption-Zone wore jockey goggles given out by Keeneland before the LSU at Kentucky men’s basketball game in Rupp Arena on March 5, 2016.
Fans in the E-Rupption-Zone wore jockey goggles given out by Keeneland before the LSU at Kentucky men’s basketball game in Rupp Arena on March 5, 2016. palcala@herald-leader.com

Nearly 400,000 fans watched the University of Kentucky men’s basketball team in Rupp Arena during the 2015-16 season, marking the 18th time in the last 21 years that UK has led the nation in home attendance.

According to figures released by the NCAA on Wednesday, UK led all schools with an average of 23,361 fans per home game. Following Kentucky were Syracuse at 21,592 and Louisville at 20,859.

Since Rupp Arena opened for the 1976-77 season, UK has ranked either first or second in average home attendance every season.

The Wildcats have averaged more than 23,000 fans in six of Coach John Calipari’s seven seasons at Kentucky.

A total of 397,148 fans attended Kentucky’s 17 home games in 2015-16. UK was one of only seven schools with at least 300,000 fans at its home games.

A total of 694,871 fans watched the Wildcats play at home, on the road and at neutral sites in 2015-16, which ranked second in the country. Kentucky set the NCAA record in 2013-14 with 922,653 total fans.

The Southeastern Conference had the second-highest attendance among the 32 NCAA Division I conferences, trailing only the Big Ten.

A total of 32,382,283 fans watched student-athletes in Divisions I, II and III in college basketball last season, the 10th-highest attendance in NCAA history.

UK women No. 8

The UK women’s team ranked eighth nationally in average attendance last season, with 6,454 fans per game. That marked the 13th straight season in which Kentucky has ranked among the top 25.

The 6,454 figure was second best all-time for the UK women, behind only the 6,727 average of 2013-14.

SEC rivals South Carolina (14,364) and Tennessee (10,412) ranked one and two, and were followed by Iowa State (9,833), Louisville (9,503), national champion UConn (8,920), Notre Dame (8,437) and Michigan State (6,561).

College basketball attendance

Average crowds in the 2015-16 season

1. Kentucky (23,361)

2. Syracuse (21,592)

3. Louisville (20,859)

4. North Carolina (18,326)

5. Maryland (17,863)

View the complete list

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