K-State finishes 25th in attendance

MANHATTAN, Kan. The Kansas State men’s basketball program finished 25th nationally in attendance this past season with an average of just over 12,500 fans, according to a release by the NCAA on Monday.


The Wildcats drew a total of 212,987 fans to its 17 home games for average attendance of 12,529 fans per contest in 2007-08.  The total also included a Dec. 17, 2007 contest against Florida A&M at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo, which was included in the home attendance since the department controlled all ticket and event operations.  The Wildcats and Rattlers drew 17,699 to the new arena. 


The total attendance was the highest by a Kansas State squad in school history, topping the 209,123 fans that saw 18 games during the 2006-07 season.  It also marked the first time in the program’s history that it drew 200,000 or more fans in back-to-back seasons.  Last season, the Wildcats ranked 26th nationally with 209,123 fans to 18 home games for an average of 12,301 per contest. 


The average attendance of 12,529 ranked as the second-highest in school history, just behind the 12,978 who attended the inaugural season of Bramlage Coliseum during the 1988-89 season.  The team also set the school record with nine sellouts, including seven in Big 12 play.  The Wildcats totaled 195,288 for 16 contests in Bramlage Coliseum for an average of 12,206 fans, which represented over 97 percent of the capacity of the arena (12,528).  The program has drawn over 404,411 fans to 34 home games the last two seasons.   


Kentucky led the nation in attendance for the third straight season and the 12th time in the last 13 seasons with an average attendance of 22,554 in 18 games.  North Carolina (20,497), Syracuse (20,345), Tennessee (20,267) and Louisville (19,481) rounded out the top-5.  Kansas led all Big 12 schools with an average of 16,409 fans, which ranked 13th nationally, while Texas (13,815) and Iowa State (13,317) ranked just ahead of K-State in 20th and 23rd places, respectively.  In all, eight Big 12 schools ranked in the nation’s top 50.


The Big 12 was one of five conferences to break attendance records in 2007-08, including total (2,374,927) and average (10,995).  The total trailed just the Big East (3,054,190), Big Ten (2,517,685) and SEC (2,561,545) among all 31 conferences, while the average ranked fifth among all leagues.


Kansas State finished the 2007-08 season with a 21-12 overall record, including a third-place finish in the Big 12 with a 10-6 mark.  The Wildcats advanced to NCAA Tournament for the first time in 12 seasons and collected their first NCAA victory in 20 seasons with an 80-67 victory over USC in the first round.  The squad could return up to nine lettermen, including seven with starting experience, for the 2008-09 season.  


Kansas State has posted a 29-5 record at home over the past two seasons, including a 13-3 mark in Big 12 play.  The 29 wins rank fourth among all Big 12 schools, trailing just Kansas (36), Texas A&M (34) and Texas (32) in that span, while the 13 conference wins are only surpassed by Kansas (15) and Texas (15).