Home attendance up for Bulls from last season
For all the talk early in the season about season ticket sales being down about 13 percent from last year, USF's home attendance -- both announced and actual -- is up from 2008, and that's before a healthy boost from Saturday's final home game against Miami, which is close to a sellout.
The average announced attendance for USF's five home games so far is 49,770, just barely up from 49,690 last season. Those figures are based on the number of tickets distributed, but when you check the actual attendance -- the turnstile count recorded by the Tampa Sports Authority -- USF's actual average is 38,301, up about 2 percent from 37,598 a year ago.
Saturday's home game against Louisville, a 34-22 Bulls win, saw the biggest disparity this season between the announced crowd and the actual attendance -- 49,388 and 32,905, which means for every two people in the stands, there was a third ticket distributed but not used.
USF coach Jim Leavitt said during Monday's Big East coaches teleconference that he expects the Miami game -- the Bulls' first home game against one of the state's other three BCS-conference programs -- to be sold out, saying that about 1,000 tickets remained available. A check at Ticketmaster.com showed only single seats left for the lower two levels, with pairs remaining in the upper deck at Raymond James Stadium.