UNC Volleyball Draws 19,246 Fans…For a Regular Season Game

  0 Braden Keith | October 14th, 2017 | ACC, College - Women's Indoor, News

The North Carolina Tar Heels, who don’t charge admission for their home volleyball games, broke an NCAA Record on Friday night by drawing an official attendance of 19,246 fans. That makes Friday’s game the highest-attended NCAA volleyball match in history – post-season or otherwise.

UNC has a smaller arena, the Carmichael Arena, that was once the home of the school’s famed men’s basketball team, and now plays host to volleyball, gymnastics, wrestling, and women’s basketball. While the Carmichael Arena has a significant capacity of 10,180, and they do sell out sometimes for women’s basketball, 36 times in program history the women’s volleyball program has moved to the larger Dean Smith Center.

That included on Friday night, where they drew a record-setting crowd. After the match, the 2017 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship banner was hung in a historic night for the UNC faithful. The game was part of the Late Night with Roy event, hosted by men’s basketball coach Roy Williams.

This isn’t the first time the Tarheels have made a big splash in the Dean Dome – they also drew an NCAA record crowd in 2003, for the first edition of Late Night with Roy. The event has included a volleyball game 7 times since, drawn a crowd of 7,000+ fans each of those times, and has resulted in a Tarheel win in every one of those matches.

For reference, the 19,246 fans would’ve been effectively a sellout at last year’s NCAA Championship match in Columbus, Ohio (an NHL arena).

The previous record for a non-NCAA tournament game was 15,946 fans for the 2013 edition of this event, where UNC beat Maryland; and the previous overall record was 17,561 fans when Nebraska beat Texas for the 2015 NCAA title in Omaha – essentially a home crowd for a volleyball-mad fan base.

Prior to Friday’s game, UNC ranked 27th nationally with an average home attendance of 1,674. The 19k+ fans on Friday is more than they’d had in the previous 7 home games this season combined (11,716). Nebraska, the national leaders, are averaging 8,200+ fans this season. Factoring in Friday’s crowd should vault the Tarheels into 5th nationally in average home attendance.

The 12 highest-attended women’s volleyball matches in NCAA history:

1 19,246 Regular Season UNC vs. Virginia Tech Chapel Hill, North Carolina Oct 14, 2017
2 17,561 2015 NCAA final Nebraska vs Texas Omaha, NE Dec 19, 2015
3 17,551 2015 NCAA semifinals Nebraska vs Kansas
Texas vs Minnesota
Omaha, NE Dec 17, 2015
4 17,430 2008 NCAA semifinals Stanford vs Texas
Penn State vs Nebraska
Omaha, NE Dec 18, 2008
5 17,345 2016 NCAA final Stanford vs. Texas Columbus, OH Dec 17, 2016
6 17,209 2006 NCAA final Nebraska vs Stanford Omaha, NE Dec 16, 2006
7 17,014 2006 NCAA semifinals Nebraska vs UCLA
Stanford vs Washington
Omaha, NE Dec 14, 2006
8 16,670 2016 NCAA semifinals Stanford vs Minnesota
Texas vs Nebraska
Columbus, OH Dec 15, 2016
9 16,448 2012 NCAA final Texas vs Oregon Louisville, KY Dec 15, 2012
10 16,119 2005 NCAA regional final Nebraska vs Florida Omaha, NE Dec 10, 2005
11 15,945 Regular Season UNC vs Maryland Chapel Hill, NC Oct 25, 2013
12 14,975 2013 NCAA semifinals Penn State vs Washington Seattle, WA Dec 19, 2013

Leave a Reply


About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and co-founder of VolleyMob.com. Braden's first foray into sports journalism came in 2010, when he launched a swimming website called The Swimmers' Circle. Two years later, he joined SwimSwam.com as a co-founder. Long huge fans of volleyball, when Braden and the SwimSwam partners sought an opportunity to …

Read More »

Don't want to miss anything?

Subscribe to our newsletter and receive our latest updates!