FootballSports & Rec

Boise State vs. UTEP game brings highest home opener attendance since 2016 to Albertsons Stadium

Photo by Claire Keener

After not being able to attend games at full capacity last season, Boise State football fans made up for it this season by recording a total of 35,518 fans at the home opener against the University of Texas El Paso (UTEP).

Albertsons Stadium has a maximum capacity of 36,387 total attendees, meaning less than 900 seats were left untaken.

At Friday’s game on Sept. 10, Bronco Nation had the highest attendance for a home opener since 2016 against Washington State University and the third all-time in program history

According to Head Coach Andy Avalos, high fan attendance at sporting events is an essential part of being a Bronco and defines the culture at Boise State.

“That’s what makes the experience here as a Bronco, being able to go out in that stadium and have it packed the way it was,” Avalos said. “When there’s that type of energy in the stadium, that’s a home-field advantage.”

Boise State fans in the stands at Albertsons Stadium.
[Photo of Boise State fans in the stands at Albertsons Stadium at the UTEP game on Sept. 10]
Photo by Claire Keener | The Arbiter

According to players on the team, having a high fan attendance makes the game much more enjoyable and helpful in giving them an advantage over opposing teams.

“I loved it. I just, I missed the fans, man,” junior safety JL Skinner said. “The fans made the game way better, having the crowd there, as you guys can tell.”

According to Avalos, having fans in attendance isn’t only exciting, but it is also a weapon that the Broncos can use to their advantage.

“When you’re on that field and there’s that type of energy in the stadium — how loud the crowd was when the defense was on the field was awesome,” Avalos said.

From every third down UTEP faced, to redshirt junior receiver Stefan Cobbs’ 81-yard punt return for a touchdown, the fans cheered so loud the stadium would shake.

Fan attendance is not expected to decline for this week’s game. According to Boise State Athletics, 94% of tickets have already been sold for Boise State’s next home game against Oklahoma State University on Saturday, Sept. 18.

However, The Arbiter has not received word on how or if the newly announced student COVID requirements will affect this number or if Boise State Athletics anticipates any change in ticket sales for the next home game on Oct. 2. 

“Bronco Nation, we appreciate the support you have been showing us,” Avalos said.

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