More games mean more FCS attendance in 2019

(Stats Perform) – The average attendance at FCS games decreased slightly during the 2019 season, but the overall total rose due to more games than a year earlier.

FCS programs were allowed to play up to 12 regular-season games, one more than in 2018. According to NCAA data, the average crowd size was 7,830, down 23 from 7,853 in the 2018 season. But the 723 games (home and neutral-site) drew 5,661,059 fans, an increase of 407,688 from 5,253,371 at 669 games a year earlier (games between FBS and FCS teams are considered part of FBS attendance figures; reclassifying FCS programs North Alabama and Merrimack also were not included in FCS numbers).

The slight decrease in attendance average continued the general pattern across college football.

Jackson State was the FCS attendance leader, averaging 33,762 over five home games. Montana (22,545, seven home games) was second followed in the top 10 by James Madison (18,108, nine), Alabama State (17,799, five), national champion North Dakota State (17,440, nine), Montana State (17,281, eight), Southern (16,957, four), North Carolina A&T (16,927, five), Jacksonville State (16,829, seven) and Florida A&M (16,537, six).

The Southwestern Athletic Conference led the 13 conferences with 15,266 fans per game followed in the top five by the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (9,782), Big Sky Conference (9,444), CAA Football (8,930) and Missouri Valley Football Conference (8,928).

In contrast, the 888 games on the FBS level drew on average 41,477 fans. Michigan was the national leader, averaging 111,459 over seven home games, while Penn State, Ohio State, Texas A&M, Alabama and national champion LSU also were above 100,000 per home game.