The Times West Virginian

WVU Sports

March 9, 2010

FURFARI COLUMN - Interest in WVU basketball is at peak pitch

MORGANTOWN — Interest in men’s basketball was never higher than it has been this year.

So it certainly is not surprising that the Mountaineers, 24-6 for the regular season and nationally ranked in the Top 10, set an all-time attendance record at the Coliseum turnstiles.

Matt Wells, director of WVU sports marketing, said the 14 home games draw 173,281 fans. That total averages out to 12,377 per contest. WVU students averaged about 1,800.

All three of those are all-time highs including standing-room-only crowds of more than 15,000 for Pitt, Villanova and Ohio State games.

The previous records for home attendance were in 1981-82.

West Virginia drew 170,762 for 15 games that year. The average was 12,307 per contest.

Wells said, “We are very pleased that we had so many fans at the games this season. And we hope that even more will turn out next year and set more records.”

Bob Huggins, in his third year as the head coach, has said Mountaineer fans are truly loyal and supportive.

“They come out to see the Mountaineers perform,” he said. “Our fans don’t really care who we’re playing.”

Making the attendance records even more impressive is the fact that the fans had to travel in the long stretch of snow and freezing temperatures that Morgantown had not seen in several years.

Make no mistake, there was great interest in WVU men’s basketball in 1942 when coach Dyke Raese’s Cinderella team won the National Invitation Tournament title in New York. That picked up again after World War II with Leland Byrd and Fred Schaus (head coach from 1955-60) leading the way.

Mark Workman was a standout at center in the mid-1950s with the legendary Hot Rod Hundley, Jerry West and Rod Thorn following into the 1960s.

But all of those superstars played in 6,500-seat Mountaineer Field House. Now fans are filling the 14,000-seat Coliseum, which opened in 1970, at a record rate. Tickets have become scarce.

Text Only
WVU Sports
  • WVU #6 SHORTS -TS.jpg WVU opens practice with different feel: VIDEOS AND PHOTOS

    West Virginia University football coach Dana Holgorsen was happy with his team’s first practice of the 2014 season.
    Of course, he would note, “Everybody in the country has a good first day.”
    But somehow, this was different.
    Very different.

    August 1, 2014 9 Photos

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Social media adds another thing to watch for coaches

    As someone who has gotten himself in enough hot water with a misplaced Tweet, when West Virginia University quarterback Clint Trickett hit the send button on July 17 sending out to the cyberworld what should have remained there with him on the couch on which he was sitting, I could feel his pain.

    August 1, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: Bobby Bowden won the bad-and-good battle with rival Lou Holtz

    The recent announcement that West Virginia University is resuming a football relationship with North Carolina State triggered a most memorable bad-news, good-news battle.
    It was between two legendary coaches, WVU’s Bobby Bowden and N.C. State’s Lou Holtz back there in the 1970s.

    August 1, 2014

  • WVU basketball non-conference schedule released

    After playing challenging schedules along with the tough Big 12 road, West Virginia University has backed off some this season on its non-conference schedule that was released Thursday.
    West Virginia is coming off a 17-16 season in which it failed to reach the NCAA Tournament and lost to Georgetown in the first round of the NIT.

    August 1, 2014

  • Mountaineers open practice with different feel

    West Virginia football coach Dana Holgorsen was happy with his team’s first practice of the 2014 season.

    July 31, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Social media adds another thing to watch for coaches

    As someone who has gotten himself in enough hot water with a misplaced Tweet, when West Virginia quarterback Clint Trickett hit the send button on July 17 sending out to the cyberworld that should have remained there with him on the couch on which he was sitting, I could feel his pain.

    July 31, 2014

  • FURFARI COLUMN: Bobby Bowden won the bad-and-good battle with rival Lou Holtz

    The recent announcement that West Virginia University is resuming a football relationship with North Carolina State triggered a most memorable bad-news, good-news battle.

    July 31, 2014

  • WVU men’s basketball non-conference schedule announced

    West Virginia University Director of Athletics Oliver Luck has announced the 2014-15 men’s basketball non-conference schedule.

    July 31, 2014

  • HERTZEL COLUMN: Must WVU defense carry offense in ’14?

    The other day the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette ran a story under the following headline:
    “In a year of change, must the Steelers’ offense carry the defense this year?”
    Reading that turned on a light.

    July 31, 2014

  • WVU takes first step today

    Perhaps the most used — and least factual — cliché in sports is as follows:
    “There’s no tomorrow.”
    Around these parts, however, tomorrow is what they are clinging to, while putting a new twist on the cliché, turning it to, “There’s no yesterday.”

    July 31, 2014

Featured Ads
WVU Sports Highlights
NDN Sports
House Ads
NCAA Breaking News
NCAA Photos