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FredDavenport
05-30-2013, 07:51 PM
What was the average attendance of the semi-finals and finals of each of the four regionals? I think this would be a perfect number to use as a benchmark for future discussion.

ericredaxe
05-30-2013, 08:16 PM
Agganis would be a great regional site. So would Conti. They are the right size. They are in an area where college hockey flourishes. They are easy to get to by public transit and to drive to. Even if you want to have a rule that BC can't play at Conti and BU can't play at Agganis, you can pretty easily send them to the other eastern site with minor negative impact on attendance. And even 4-5000 in a 7-8000 seat venue is pretty good. If BC/BU is playing even if its in the other guy's Barn, you're going to get a solid turnout. As long as you make the tickets for both games, you're going to have some vacant seats, because some significant portion of the fans are fans of a particular school more than they are hockey fans, and if they are Yale fans, and Yale is playing BU in game 1, they aren't necessarily going to wait 1 1/2 hours to watch BC-Niagara. Nor are most BC and Niagara fans going to arrive for the puck drop of BU-Yale. If you can reduce that wait to 30-45 minutes, you'll probably have more stay. If you sell individual game tickets you might have a bigger crowd at each game, too.

The thing is though, that the eastern sites don't tend to be the "problem" with attendance... manchester and worcester each tend to do pretty well... I think Providence would have done better if the game didn't start at 9:30 PM or whatever it was... Not that Agganis, or Conte, or Tsongas etc wouldn't work well for a regional site either... they would.

CLS
05-31-2013, 12:50 PM
What was the average attendance of the semi-finals and finals of each of the four regionals? I think this would be a perfect number to use as a benchmark for future discussion.
See post 331.

http://inchwriters.files.wordpress.com/2013/04/attend.pdf

CLS
05-31-2013, 12:59 PM
The thing is though, that the eastern sites don't tend to be the "problem" with attendance... manchester and worcester each tend to do pretty well... I think Providence would have done better if the game didn't start at 9:30 PM or whatever it was... Not that Agganis, or Conte, or Tsongas etc wouldn't work well for a regional site either... they would.You also have the possibility of the problem that existed when there were regionals at Yost, Englestad, and Mariucci. There were instances in which a lower seed (e.g. Michigan) got a game at their home rink against a higher seeded team. That's manifestly unfair to the higher seeded team. Home rinks are terrible ideas if the venue is pre-assigned.

FlagDUDE08
05-31-2013, 01:22 PM
You also have the possibility of the problem that existed when there were regionals at Yost, Englestad, and Mariucci. There were instances in which a lower seed (e.g. Michigan) got a game at their home rink against a higher seeded team. That's manifestly unfair to the higher seeded team. Home rinks are terrible ideas if the venue is pre-assigned.

It's also luck of the draw. You could have said the same thing if Brown had beaten Union for the ECAC championship and that 4 seed would have had a "home game" as a regional host. Granted, their fan base doesn't compare to the other schools mentioned, but I think you get the point. There's only so much that you can do without creating a huge cluster____ when it comes to regionals. Perhaps they need to play them in Raleigh, Los Angeles, St. Louis, and DC in order to make sure no one has home ice advantage?

CLS
05-31-2013, 01:49 PM
It's also luck of the draw. You could have said the same thing if Brown had beaten Union for the ECAC championship and that 4 seed would have had a "home game" as a regional host. Granted, their fan base doesn't compare to the other schools mentioned, but I think you get the point. There's only so much that you can do without creating a huge cluster____ when it comes to regionals. Perhaps they need to play them in Raleigh, Los Angeles, St. Louis, and DC in order to make sure no one has home ice advantage?That's not what I suggested. When I said home rink, I meant that literally, as in Yost, Mariucci, and Englestad; not Twin Cities, Detroit, or North Dakota. The rink that they played all or most of their home games in, the rink that's in the middle of their campus, the rink that they practice in. There's a huge difference between Minnesota playing Holy Cross at the Xcel and Minnesota playing Holy Cross at Mariucci. I particularly object to the examples suggested (Agganis and Conte) because there are suitable, geographically close alternatives available. As was suggested, there's no need to consider them anyway because as has been noted attendance in the Eastern regions has not been a problem.

Shirtless Guy
05-31-2013, 01:52 PM
It's also luck of the draw. You could have said the same thing if Brown had beaten Union for the ECAC championship and that 4 seed would have had a "home game" as a regional host. Granted, their fan base doesn't compare to the other schools mentioned, but I think you get the point. There's only so much that you can do without creating a huge cluster____ when it comes to regionals. Perhaps they need to play them in Raleigh, Los Angeles, St. Louis, and DC in order to make sure no one has home ice advantage?The difference is the designation of "Home Game" vs Home Game. Brown would not have been playing in it's home arena in it's normal locker room. The problem out West is that there are very few venues that fit the bill: good location, proper size, not a team's home building. I don't really know what the answer is out west because other than the Xcel Energy Center (which is probably too big), I can't think of many that would do well. I will say that maybe the way to go now is to attempt to regionalize the bracket more than normal. It will be alot easier for the NCAA to do that now with the reshuffling. I thought the most interesting part of the analysis about the regional setup is how often BU and BC have been forced West and how poorly they've done out west compared to how often western schools have been forced east. Maybe it is time to regionalize east and west

Jim
05-31-2013, 03:09 PM
It's also luck of the draw. You could have said the same thing if Brown had beaten Union for the ECAC championship and that 4 seed would have had a "home game" as a regional host. Granted, their fan base doesn't compare to the other schools mentioned, but I think you get the point. There's only so much that you can do without creating a huge cluster____ when it comes to regionals. Perhaps they need to play them in Raleigh, Los Angeles, St. Louis, and DC in order to make sure no one has home ice advantage?That's right. I mean UNH plays in Manchester every time there is game there I think. it isn't technically their home rink, but its only 45 minutes away and located in the largest city of a relatively small state. So it's hardly "neutral." And I agree that if you're one of the 4 seeds, they probably should make an effort to move you out of your home arena, though not necessarily your home state. So if Michigan is one of the 4 seeds, I probably wouldn't send them to Yost, but i wouldn't send them to Providence either unless it was absolutely the only option. I think there are also some management things you can do if you need to put Minnesota in its home venue as a lower seed. Some are maybe comfort things. the home locker room is often superior to visitors rooms. Make that off limits. I actually saw this done in a schoolboy football tournament game and the coaching staff said it was very disconcerting for them. Small stuff like that to take away at least a piece of the home ice advantage. I think the reason that the eastern sites don't have the same issues with attendance, or as great an issue anyway, has lots more to do with how compact the hockey "belt" is. Pretty much 2-3 hours north, west or south of Boston takes in a huge percentage of the potential participants, and an equally large percentage of their fans, probably even larger percentage of their fans actually. And there are a number of at least modestly suitable facilities within that relatively compact area. It isn't anything close to that in the west. So if I'm a BU fan and they are sent to Manchester or Worcester or Providence or even Bridgeport I can get there with relative ease. Leave at 3 for a 6:00 game and be home before midnight worst case. Not the same going from OSU to Minneapolis.

WiscDC
05-31-2013, 03:14 PM
The difference is the designation of "Home Game" vs Home Game. Brown would not have been playing in it's home arena in it's normal locker room. The problem out West is that there are very few venues that fit the bill: good location, proper size, not a team's home building. I don't really know what the answer is out west because other than the Xcel Energy Center (which is probably too big), I can't think of many that would do well. I will say that maybe the way to go now is to attempt to regionalize the bracket more than normal. It will be alot easier for the NCAA to do that now with the reshuffling. I thought the most interesting part of the analysis about the regional setup is how often BU and BC have been forced West and how poorly they've done out west compared to how often western schools have been forced east. Maybe it is time to regionalize east and west

Even when the NCAA gives the higher seed a true home game, they still act like it's a neutral site. At the Mercyhurst - Wisconsin women's quarterfinal in 2012, the band wasn't allowed to play "On, Wisconsin" when the players took the ice. They were allowed to do the normal post-goal stuff and perform during breaks, but Mercyhurst was not treated like the road team. I suppose this doesn't matter a whole lot, but there's a different feel when your arena becomes a bunch of blue circles (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/d/dd/NCAA_logo.svg/500px-NCAA_logo.svg.png).

Jim
05-31-2013, 03:26 PM
the other advantage of using college arenas that meet some basic standard is that you can probably make your decision on which to use at the last minute, or after the field is set. I mean as a practical matter, if you gave the top seeds home ice, they wouldn't know if the arena was to be used until the tournament schedule was set. So you might well be able to schedule games at Yost pretty late in the process. With neutral arenas that's not the case.

Shirtless Guy
05-31-2013, 04:29 PM
Jim you're forgetting a few important things, some arenas are multipurpose like the Kohl Center. Hotel rooms are required for visiting teams and some I these places really can't handle the late additions and teams should not be required to stay far from the arena for a tournament like this.

FlagDUDE08
05-31-2013, 05:06 PM
Jim you're forgetting a few important things, some arenas are multipurpose like the Kohl Center. Hotel rooms are required for visiting teams and some I these places really can't handle the late additions and teams should not be required to stay far from the arena for a tournament like this.

Lansingburgh can handle them. :p:D

FredDavenport
06-02-2013, 11:22 AM
Folks, the point here is that the NCAA should be considering the teams that have the best regular season records have the home advantage, like all others do (MLB, NHL, NBA, NFL, NCAA Men's Lacrosse, NCAA Women's Ice Hockey, NCAA Baseball, Softball & more)

Let's face it neutral sites are only good for the coaches, not the fans, atmosphere, revenue etc.

On the notion that we need to have facilities and hotels ready, this is EXACTLY what has to happen for the conference playoffs when many times teams do not know if they are hosting and where they are going till the last game of the conference season.

Fishman'81
06-03-2013, 01:59 AM
I've said it before, etc...

The NCAA doesn't care about attendance much, as long as the TV money/national exposure exists. Witness all the empty seats at hoops Regionals (which I've seen first-hand a few times) , while the NCAA nevertheless rakes in the dough hand-over-fist via TV for that tournament as a whole.

Same deal for hockey, albeit on a much smaller scale... As long as ESPN is paying to show the games, the gate is irrelevant to them, as it should be.

In this age of all-encompassing media-coverage (watching games on your friggin' phone, for example), fannies in the seats mean less and less. The Super Bowl could be played in an empty stadium this year, and the NFL would still derive a billion bucks from it.

Worrying about physical attendance is a little silly, in light of that fact... And gifting lower seeds home-ice is a worse idea than ever, all things considered. There is just no cogent reason for it.

Jim
06-03-2013, 10:55 AM
Jim you're forgetting a few important things, some arenas are multipurpose like the Kohl Center. Hotel rooms are required for visiting teams and some I these places really can't handle the late additions and teams should not be required to stay far from the arena for a tournament like this.And how would this be dealt with if a team was getting home ice for the first round? Admittedly a smaller number of teams, but even so, its the same problem. But your right, logistics is an issue. and if you have to stay an hour away that is different from staying 20 minutes away.

Alton
06-04-2013, 09:42 AM
I've said it before, etc...

The NCAA doesn't care about...

They don't care about money either...at least not hockey money, which essentially rounds to zero in the grand scheme of things.

There are a lot of different groups of people who get called "The NCAA" in different contexts. These groups care about very different things. The NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Committee is made up of college hockey people, and cares very much about the public perception of their sport. The NCAA Division I Championships and Competition Cabinet is made up of mostly athletic administrators, and cares mostly about the consistent application of principles in creating the different Division I tournaments. The NCAA Division I Administrative Council cares about money and will consider any proposals based on how much it will cost and how much it will save (and doesn't really consider TV money in the debate for minor sports). The first committee will propose any rule changes, the second and third committees will approve or reject any proposals, and anybody else who is called "The NCAA" either will rubber stamp the decision or has no say at all.

So the question returns: pre-determined sites for the first round like Division I basketball, or home sites for the first round like every other sport the NCAA sponsors in every division?

I'm amazed that this is even a debate. Do NCAA tennis fans argue about whether the first round of the tennis tournament should be at a neutral site, instead of the top 16 seeds? I kind of follow NCAA softball, and I've certainly never heard it suggested that the regionals or super-regionals should be on neutral softball fields. But it comes up in hockey, because the committee made a bad decision two decades ago and the current committee can't find it in their hearts to admit that their predecessors were wrong, wrong, wrong.

I posted it several months ago, but the problem remains: for the casual fans (not the over-rabid fans like us who are reading this board in June):
* People only want to see their own team in the regionals, and don't care about other teams.
* People will travel to see their teams in regionals, but not too far: they won't fly and they mostly won't spend even one night in a hotel room to do it.
* People don't think they should be spending much more than they spend for a regular-season ticket.

Neutral regionals can't work within the context of the facts above, at least they can't work unless you have 20 teams in a 200-mile radius. The 16-team format used by lacrosse works for that sport, and it has probably the same constraints that I listed above. There's no reason that format can't work for hockey too. One of the best features of our sport is the enthusiasm of the fans. Let's bring that enthusiasm back to where it belongs in the most important games of the season.

FlagDUDE08
06-04-2013, 11:06 AM
How much are regional tickets? I went to a Crunch playoff game this past weekend (conference finals, i.e. the step before the Calder Cup final), and an at-the-door ticket was $28, which is about the price of the nosebleeds during value or bronze at Sabres games. That's not too bad. Equate that to $56 for two games per seat ($84 for three games), make an adjustment for the level of play, city, and atmosphere; the NCAA should be comparable.

Patman
06-04-2013, 11:08 AM
With all due respect, I hated that format, because there always seemed to be an auto-bye for an undeserving team. (Usually Clarkson.)

Perhaps if the NCAA used the PWR to seed the teams, vs. gifting the auto-bids, it wouldn't be so bad.

I still maintain that it's all about the national TV exposure, though. As long as college hockey has that, it really doesn't matter much if people attend the games... The sport will grow in spite of itself.

That wasn't the format's fault but the double autobid system and its seeding presumptions.

This year it was Quinny, Minny, Lowell, and Miami(?). Three of those lost to the national champion. I don't think it'd be that bad.

Now, don't get me wrong, I don't want to go back to 12 but the crowds were usually very good in the east.

Alton
06-04-2013, 11:12 AM
How much are regional tickets?

At Toledo, they were $45 for the semifinals, $45 for the final, $75 for the entire package.

Reference: an article in the Toledo Blade where arena officials brag about the adequacity of the attendance (2,988 for the semifinals and 2,460 for the final).

http://www.toledoblade.com/sports/2013/04/01/NCAA-hockey-regional-attendance-adequate-for-arena-officials.html

FlagDUDE08
06-04-2013, 11:47 AM
At Toledo, they were $45 for the semifinals, $45 for the final, $75 for the entire package.

Reference: an article in the Toledo Blade where arena officials brag about the adequacity of the attendance (2,988 for the semifinals and 2,460 for the final).

http://www.toledoblade.com/sports/2013/04/01/NCAA-hockey-regional-attendance-adequate-for-arena-officials.html

OK, going from $84 to $75 in two cities that I'd assume are fairly similar (Toledo's metropolitan area is probably a bit bigger). The level of competition is comparable. Must be atmosphere that is the problem where tickets can't be sold.