The Clemson home game is always one of the best attended games of the season, with the Tigers faithful traveling en masse to make the trip up to Chestnut Hill. Still, like many other opponents the Eagles have faced regularly over the last few seasons, BC has seem diminishing returns at the gate for their biennial home game against the Tigers.
Here are the last four home ACC games against Clemson:
2006: 44,500, September 9 (W 34-33 OT)
2008: 41,863, November 1 (L 27-21)
2010: 37,137, October 30 (W 16-10)
2012: 40,138, September 29 (Parent's Weekend) (L 45-31)
I have to admit I don't really know what to expect from the Eagles home crowd this weekend. It's Homecoming weekend on the Heights, but that's a newer tradition that I'm not sure is being embraced by every class of graduates. The program is playing well, though fans' last glimpse of this team was a 24-21 setback to Colorado State.
Small sample size and whatnot, but the Eagles just haven't been making out so well with conference game attendance over the last two seasons. In the five ACC home games under Addazio, BC is averaging just 32,814 a game. That per-game average is even lower than the home attendance average over the last year and a half (33,206), once you factor in non-conference home games against USC (41,632), Colorado State (33,632), Army (33,128), Villanova (30,922) and Maine (28,676).
Now, Clemson does come into the game ranked in the top 25 (#22 in the Coaches Poll, #24 in AP), though the Tigers will be playing without their star QB Deshaun Watson. BC should get a bit of a boost from Homecoming weekend, but only 33,128 bothered to show up for last year's Homecoming game against Army (in a game that was nearly canceled due to last year's federal government shutdown). These days BC seems to top out at right around the 40k mark for high-end, non-Notre Dame opponents (think: USC, Florida State).
Can the school manage to eclipse the 40k mark for just the fifth time in 3 and a half seasons? I want to say yes, but I just can't given the attendance trends of the last few seasons. Still, it should be a respectable showing and a decent Homecoming crowd. Call it 39,200 for BC's Homecoming game against the Tigers.