NCAA lauds Kentucky, Syracuse, Big Ten for attendance

Published Aug 11, 2017 at 4:00pm

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Kentucky, Syracuse and the Big Ten recorded three of the top NCAA basketball attendance marks during the 2016-17 season.

In a short video released by the NCAA on Tuesday, the two storied programs and the powerhouse league were recognized for their accomplishments.

The Wildcats led the nation with an average attendance of 23,461. The Orange was the only team to top 400,000 in total attendance, packing 444,809 into the Carrier Dome in just 21 home games.

The Big Ten bested all conferences in men's basketball attendance for the 41st consecutive season, totaling 3,119,823 for home and league tournament games. That's the most in Big Ten history. The conference averaged 12,235 a game across its 14 schools. Eleven of those ranked among the top 40 in average attendance, with Wisconsin leading the way at 17,286 a game.

Missouri's women's program was lauded for notching the country's highest increase in average home attendance. The Tigers were up 3,635 a game, more evidence that fans embrace winners. Coach Robin Pingeton's team went 15-1 at Mizzou Arena last season and has won 31 of its last 35 home games.