Huskers attendance skyrockets thanks to new arena, strong team

Huskers attendance skyrockets thanks to new arena, strong team
June 14, 2014, 10:15 am
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Vinnie Duber

Get pumped, people. We're officially living in the Age of Nebrasketball.

The Huskers put together their best season in years in 2013-14, staging a few gargantuan upsets — they beat Wisconsin in Lincoln and Michigan State in East Lansing, if you'll recall — and reaching the NCAA tournament. Well, all that plus a brand spanking new stadium in Lincoln had quite the effect, as the Huskers experienced the largest increase in attendance in the NCAA.

Nebraska put out a release trumpeting its achievements in the field of attendance on Friday, and there's reason to brag about it. The 5,000-plus fan increase is the largest from one year to the next the NCAA has seen in seven years. Since the start of the new millennium, it's only eighth time a school has increased its attendance by 5,000 fans.

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The Huskers averaged 15,419 fans per game at Pinnacle Bank Arena and totaled 246,702 on the season. That last number ranked 13th in the entire country, the highest Nebraska has ever ranked on the NCAA's list.

Nebraska had an excellent season, shattering expectations along with its attendance records. Head coach Tim Miles jokingly chided media members at Big Ten media day before the season that they'd again picked the Huskers to finish last and promised them different. He turned out to be more than right, as the Huskers finished the regular season with the conference's fourth-best record then moved on to their first NCAA tournament appearance since 1998.

Terran Petteway led the Big Ten in scoring with 18.1 points per game. He and four other starters will return for the 2014-15 season, and the Huskers should again be packing them into Pinnacle Bank Arena.