Miami football home attendance numbers see substantial rise in 2016

58,572 fans per home game most for Hurricanes since 2004

PEMBROKE PARK, Fla. – The University of Miami was one of 13 schools that saw an increase of at least 15 percent in regular-season attendance last football season, the National Football Foundation said in a study released Wednesday.

The Hurricanes averaged 58,572 fans per game at Hard Rock Stadium in 2016. That was an increase of 23 percent from the 2015 season.

Miami's home attendance numbers were its best since 2004, when the Hurricanes played in the old Orange Bowl.

The Hurricanes improved to 9-4 and a No. 20 national ranking in their first season under head coach Mark Richt.

Other schools to see an increase of at least 15 percent in 2016 were Eastern Michigan, Georgia State, North Texas, South Florida, Massachusetts, San Diego State, Western Michigan, Appalachian State, Colorado, Wyoming, Central Florida and Houston.

Alabama led the nation in overall attendance with more than 1.3 million fans attending 15 games involving the Crimson Tide. That number factors attendance of all home, away, neutral-site and postseason games.

Twelve other teams eclipsed the 1 million mark in total attendance last season, including Florida. The Gators had 1,037,498 paid spectators during the 2016 season.

The Southeastern Conference title game rematch between Alabama and Florida in Atlanta was the second-most-watched game on television during the 2016 season. More than 11 million viewers tuned in Dec. 3 to watch the Crimson Tide pound Florida, 54-16. It was second only to Michigan at Ohio State in the Nov. 26 regular-season finale for both teams.

About the Author:

Peter Burke returned for a second stint of duty at Local 10 News in February 2014.