The NCAA announced record attendance for the 2013 football season on Wednesday, and those huge numbers were buoyed by some of the Big Ten’s biggest houses.
Michigan and Ohio State led the nation in both total and average attendance, thanks to their massive 100,000-plus capacity stadiums. Nebraska was third in total attendance, while Penn State and Nebraska placed in the top 10 in average attendance. Wisconsin, Michigan State and Iowa also ranked in the top 25 in average attendance.
The Wolverines led the country, drawing 781,144 fans last season, an average of 111,592 per game at Michigan Stadium. The Big House officially has a capacity of 109,901, but that number was smashed for the Sep. 7 game against Notre Dame, which drew a record 115,109 fans.
The Buckeyes ranked second, drawing a total of 734,528 fans to Ohio Stadium, an average of 104,933 per game. Alabama was the only other school in the country to average more than 100,000 fans per game.
In addition to the usual suspects, Purdue and Northwestern both ranked in the top 20 when it came to the largest increases in average attendance last season. The Boilermakers averaged 5,365 more fans last season than in 2012, while the Wildcats drew an average of 3,610 more fans than they did during the 2012 season.
Still, because this is college football, the Big Ten — even with its conference-record 6,127,526 total fans — couldn’t out-draw the SEC. The 14-team SEC drew 7,567,406 fans last season, an all-time record for conference attendance in college football.
For those who want to take a real in-depth look at the numbers, here are the numbers.