The NCAA recently released attendance figures for the 2010-2011 basketball season. In 17 home games this season, Boston College averaged 5,324 fans a game, which was an ever-so-slight increase from the previous season.
Here's a look at the last 10 years of BC basketball home hoops attendance (number of home games in parenthesis):
2010-11: 5,324 (17)
2009-10: 5,317 (17)
2008-09: 5,548 (19)
2007-08: 5,778 (19)
2006-07: 6,916 (18)
2005-06: 7,213 (16)
2004-05: 6,440 (17)
2003-04: 5,243 (16)
2002-03: 6,133 (14)
2001-02: 6,602 (16)
As you can see, this year's 5,324 average broke a streak of five straight years of declining attendance which unfortunately coincided with the program's move to the ACC. BC got a big boost to attendance in 2005-06 -- partly due to the halo effect of the move to the ACC and partly due to a really, really great team that year. But attendance has been on the decline ever since, so I suppose any uptick in attendance, however slight, is welcome.
What's interesting about this year's final attendance number is that if you exclude the Eagles' final home game against Northwestern in the NIT (listed attendance of just 2,765), BC's average goes up to 5,484 a game, which is over 100 attendees better year-over-year. Not bad, not bad ...
Sadly though, for the second straight season, BC is outside the top 100 programs in the country in terms of home attendance. Mid-major Marshall checks in at #100 this year, averaging 5,524 a game over 18 games.
In the ACC, BC's home attendance figure was only better than Miami, who averaged just 4,763 a game. Of course raw attendance numbers aren't a perfect measure of fan interest, and I'd be much more interested in percent capacity numbers, but the NCAA doesn't release these.
D1scourse's Patrick Stevens has some additional notes on the attendance figures, including a look at the year-over-year delta among ACC schools. BC's 0.13% increase was just middle of the pack in the conference.