The Rutgers Scarlet Knights first year of playing college football in the Big Ten Conference was a huge success at the box office, as Rutgers home attendance increased by 8.2% during its first year in the Big Ten in 2014.
In 2013, while playing in the American Athletic Conference, Rutgers drew an average of 46,549 fans per home game at High Point Solutions Stadium in Piscataway, New Jersey. In 2014, in its first season in the Big Ten, Rutgers drew an average of 50,361 fans per home game.
In addition to the 8.2% year-over-year attendance increase, Rutgers also had three sell-outs at home in 2014 vs new Big Ten rivals Penn State, Michigan, and Wisconsin. Rutgers was also a ratings success for the Big Ten Network on TV in 2014, as the Rutgers vs Penn State game drew the highest college football ratings for that week on TV in both the Philadelphia and New York markets.
Rutgers college football attendance up 8.2% first year Big Ten in 2014
Here’s the attendance for the six home games Rutgers hosted in 2014. Four of the home games were vs Big Ten rivals.
Rutgers home game opponents and attendance in 2014
- Howard – 48,040
- Penn State – 53,774
- Tulane – 48,361
- Michigan – 53,327
- Wisconsin – 52,797
- Indiana – 47,492
Seating capacity at High Point Solutions Stadium is 52,454. So any game that draws that many fans or above is a sell-out and the Penn State, Michigan, and Wisconsin games all did.
With an average of 50,361 fans per home game and a seating capacity of 52,454, Rutgers filled 96% of its official seating capacity in 2014 in its first year in the Big Ten. That is up from the 88.7% of capacity Rutgers played before in 2013.
Rutgers went 7-5 in its first season in the Big Ten, including going 3-5 in Big Ten play which far exceeded the predictions of the Big Ten writers who picked the Scarlet Knights to finish last in the league in 2014.