Determinants of Spectator Attendance at NCAA Division II Football Contests

in Journal of Sport Management
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The purpose of this study was to analyze the relationship between spectator attendance at NCAA Division II football contests and selected determinants by estimating multiple economic demand models. The two primary determinants analyzed were winning percentage and promotional activity. Demand models were estimated using OLS and fixed-effect regression analysis. The results suggested that both current and previous year winning percentages are positively related to attendance. Furthermore, it is shown that the effect of previous season winning on attendance diminishes while the effect of current season winning increases as the season progresses. The results also indicated that promotional activities, the number of enrolled students, and market competition significantly affected attendance. Overall, the demand models explained between 37 and 70 percent of the variation in spectator attendance. The findings of this study may aid Division II athletic administrators who are attempting to increase revenues by attracting additional spectators to small-college football contests.

T.D. DeSchriver is with the Department of Sport Management, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA, and P.E. Jensen is with the Department of Economics and International Business, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA.

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