Teams suffer low attendance as season continues


Ceejay Willis

Small crowds are quite common at soccer games this season, including the slightly smaller crowd that attended this women’s soccer match against Sac City on Sept. 30. Extra bleachers were added this season to provide more seating for the fans but so far have gone mostly unused at this point in the season.

The roar of the crowd during any sports match is just as much of the whole experience as the game itself, the athlete and even the snack bar food or drinks.

Professional and college football, baseball, auto racing, college and professional basketball and hockey are the most popular sports in the United States, with pro football coming in as the most popular sport for the thirtieth straight year, according to a Harris Poll. The Harris Poll has been asking adult fans about their favorite sport since 1985.

According to a poll by Gallup, an average of around 60 percent of individuals interviewed considered themselves fans of sports.

The excitement surrounding the World Series or the Super Bowl is an example of the popularity of sports.

With sports being so popular around the country it’s interesting that the crowds at Cosumnes River College sporting events are so small.

Lack of knowledge of time and location is what Adriana Mendez, 19, an early childhood education major, said is the reason she doesn’t go.

“I don’t ever know when they are, and I don’t really know anyone on the team,” Mendez said. “I would go just to meet new people and to have fun, but I don’t ever go.”

Mendez said that advertising could help bring attention to the games.

“They should post flyers or have the game schedules spread out around school just so everyone knows about them,” she said.

Mendez is not alone, as Mark Evangelista, 22, a linguistics major, said that advertising would help with knowledge of the games.

“They should advertise on television, local television, where more people can see it,” Evangelista said.

Liz Belyea, the athletic director at CRC, said that since the campus is not a residential one, such as Sac State or UC Davis, it has been hard getting students interested in going to games outside of the playoffs. She said that larger crowds are more fun and they do see those at playoff games, which adds to the excitement.

“We run promotional games such as ‘Dig and a Dog,’ for Volleyball, where we give away hot dogs and a Pepsi to all who come to the game. We also run similar events for the other sports,” Belyea said. “The communication class on campus has also been involved in promoting athletic events. Regardless of what we do, it is still hard to get students out to events.”

Belyea said that most students come to class and then leave before most athletic events start at 3:30 p.m. She said that basketball and baseball games tend to draw the largest crowds.

“We normally get approximately 50 people to home games, mostly parents, family and friends of the players,” Belyea said. “We also have CRC groups such as the dance team do halftime shows at basketball, which brings in more people, maybe up to 200 in a game where we draw locally from the other team’s fans as well. We invite high school and junior high teams to events as well, free of charge.”

While student support of athletics might be low, Belyea said that there is support between the various programs.

“Our teams often support each other as well, recently Volleyball has been coming out to soccer games,” Belyea said.

Compared to local major league sports, or even local college level sports, attending a sporting event at CRC is quite a deal since with a student ID card it’s free. For those without a card it’s $6 to attend, much cheaper than a Sacramento River Cats or Kings game.

On top of the fact that the cost is cheap, Belyea said that the games on campus are exciting.

“I personally think that it is more fun to watch our basketball teams than the NBA because of the spirit and love of the game that they have,” Belyea said. “Lots of unexpected gutsy plays. We have had some incredibly close games and they are fun to watch.”