Lincoln - Nebraska’s national attendance ranking was its highest since 1996-97, as the NCAA released its men’s basketball attendance figures from the 2012-13 season on Wednesday. The Huskers were 38th nationally in attendance in 2012-13, drawing an average of 10,352 fans per game in the final season of the Bob Devaney Sports Center.
The average was NU’s highest since the 2006-07 season, while the No. 38 ranking marked its best performance since a No. 34 ranking during the 1996-97 season. Nebraska’s per-game average is also 10 percent higher than it was during its final season in the Big 12 two years ago.
The Huskers’ average attendance will make a sizeable leap next year Nebraska moves into the brand new Pinnacle Bank Arena in the Haymarket District of Lincoln. All 2013-14 tickets in the 15,147 seat arena have already been presold since last May.
Once again, the Big Ten led all conference in average attendance with 13,114 fans per game, which is over 2,400 more fans per game than the next-closest conference. It marks the 37th consecutive year the Big Ten has led the nation in attendance. During the 2012-13 regular season, the Big Ten welcomed 2,937,630 fans over 224 games, which set the conference’s all-time total attendance record for the second-straight season, and is the 21st straight year the conference eclipsed the two-million mark.
Seven of the conference’s 12 schools ranked among the top 25 nationally, while no other conference had more than three top-25 programs.
In addition, the 2013 Big Ten Basketball Tournament set the total attendance record, as the conference welcomed 124,543 fans to the United Center in Chicago for the four-day event. The mark out-paced the previous record for total attendance of 109,769, which was set during the 2001 event in Chicago. All six sessions of the tournament were officially sold out, with an average of 20,757 patrons attending each session.
Media members will see Pinnacle Bank Arena on a media tour on Tuesday, Aug. 27, while the ribbon cutting and open house will take place on Thursday, Aug. 29. The open house will continue on Aug. 30-31, while fans can also watch the Huskers’ football game against Wyoming on the HD video board and purchase concessions on Aug. 31.