Univ. Of Kentucky Continues To See Decline In Attendance For Men's Basketball
Attendance at Rupp Arena for the Univ. of Kentucky men's basketball team's first seven games has dropped for "the fourth consecutive year," according to John Clay of the LEXINGTON HERALD-LEADER. Average attendance has "gone from 23,868 through the first seven home games" of '09, John Calipari's first season as the UK coach, "to 21,799 this season." Most of the empty seats this year are "upper-level seats reserved for students," and the team has played a "weak home schedule." UK's "three most interesting matchups this season have been neutral-site games -- Michigan State in Chicago; Providence in Brooklyn and Baylor in Dallas." The prevalence of these "made-for-TV, big-ticket affairs has all but turned the home-and-home series into an antique."Also UK and Indiana "canceled their home-and-home series." Additionally, there may be "a creeping one-and-done fatigue" among UK fans "wistful for the good old days when you got to know players over an extended period." Also, the Rupp Arena experience has "turned stale," with the introductions video "the only noticeable in-game change." The venue's lower level "has always lacked enthusiasm, while the upper level remains cramped and uncomfortable with a poor view of the action" (LEXINGTON HERALD-LEADER, 12/12).