Spoiler Alert: Maryland only beats out a school whose football team still shares its stadium with track.
While I was disappointed upon seeing our placement, I wasn't all that surprised. Too be honest, I've only been impressed with a few game-day crowds. While having followed the team since the mid '90s, I was just a young kid and only went to games sparingly. My only real experience would be from 2000-present (00-03 family season tickets, 04-07 student, 08-pres alum season tickets).
Heres also a link for Maryland's football attendance record games: Top Crowds
A few games that have stuck with me from that time:
Clemson 11/10/01 (Won 37-20) By that time, the magic and madness had set in and was Maryland's last home game of the season. Remember it well because I bet my father(who is an extremely pessimistic '81 grad) that if Maryland won that they would go to the Orange Bowl. They did and were selected to the OB, and he surprised me with tickets to Miami for Christmas.
NCST 11/09/02 (Won 24-21) The only thing more intense then the game itself was the crowd. I had seen Byrd packed, but this was the first time I was blown away by the noise and excitement. This is still my 2nd favorite attended MD game ever.
*2003 Season- Even starting the season 0-2... this was by far the most successful home season for maryland. They had over 50,000 people for all 6 of their home games. But none very memorable to me unfortunately.
Before I give my last 2 games, I wanted to say that I loved my time as a student and wouldn't go somewhere else if given a second chance, but if there was one thing that bothered me during my time there... it most certainly was the football student section. If we werent winning by halftime, goodluck trying to keep half the students from walking out.
Florida St 10/30/04 (Won 20-17) What can I say? First ever win over FSU and they were 5th in the Nation. Stormed the field. Got picked up by some massive lineman who sprinted towards the tunnel with me over his shoulders just to sing the fight song and then hear a mini speech from Fridge. Easily my favorite game.
*In 2006 I went to my first true road game. At Clemson for a 13-12 win. No one even noticed I was wearing red in the student section filled with orange until that final field goal. Glorious day. Fans were amazing down there, and I was treated like family, even after the game.
BC 11/10/07 (Won 42-35) I'll never forget this game. It was an 8pm start and it was colder than normal for early November. I remember telling my friend I'd be surprised if the student section was half full by the end of the 1st quarter. But I was proven wrong. Up just 20-14 going into halftime and temperatures dropping, ALL fans stuck around to the final whistle. Not only a good win, but definitely proud of my classmates and all maryland fans that night.
While I definitely have fond memories of all my time spent at Byrd, the crowds are inconsistent and seem to straddle the line of uninspiring on a majority of games. Sure it's exciting when we have 9 wins and facing a top10 team but what about the other 5 home games? Im interested to see what you all think, but I really believe it's just a general lack of interest in most of our opponents. Unless we are really good, or our opponent is really good then you can forget about any excitement for the game. For a college team, that's pretty bad. There should be other schools that even if we were 0-11 and they were 0-11... the game should be packed and people still care about winning.
Unfortunately, I believe most of those teams for Maryland are opponents we rarely or don't even play.
I was trying to make this a Poll but the "Attach Poll" dialog box is not appearing. Im only getting blurb, tags and promote your post. If Im able to poll later I will edit but for now I'll just write it.
What team (regardless of their record, Maryland's record, date, time or weather) would you be willing to spend money to attend and root for a Maryland win?
My answer: Navy. I'll never miss one these games.
Others (in order)- PSU, Pitt, UVA, VT