The 2011 summer collegiate baseball season has come to a close, and our annual Summer Collegiate Top 50 per game average attendance rankings are now available. For the second year in a row, every team in our Top 50 cracked the all-important 1,000 fans per game threshold.
Topping our list again are the Northwoods League’s untouchable Madison Mallards (#1) and LaCrosse Loggers (#2). And just when you thought the Mallards couldn’t possibly go any higher in the attendance department, they renovate the “Duck Pond” in the offseason and increase their numbers this season by several hundred fans per game.
Making a monster jump from #39 in 2010 to #3 this year are the Holyoke Blue Sox from the New England Collegiate Baseball League. We haven’t seen a jump like this since the Madison Mallards leaped from 1,973 fans per game in 2002 to 4,411 in 2003.
The Western Major Baseball League’s Okotoks Dawgs climbed up one spot from last year to #4 on our list with an impressive 2,307 fans per game. By comparison, as of Sunday, the indy pro Edmonton Capitals and Calgary Vipers (North American League) were averaging 1,897 and 1,489 fans per game, respectively. The O’Dawgs are clearly the “Alpha Dogs of Alberta!”
Rounding out the top five are the Fayetteville SwampDogs — the Coastal Plain League’s “Organization of the Year.” The S’Dogs have remained a steady, strong, and consistent performer over the years, and we wouldn’t expect anything less than a top-five ranking.
A very welcome entry into this year’s rankings are the Oneonta Outlaws (#19) from the New York Collegiate Baseball League. It’s great to see baseball alive and well at Oneonta’s Damaschke Field, after the Single-A Oneonta Tigers (New York-Penn League) relocated to Norwich (CT) in 2010. The Outlaws won the NYCBL title this year and broke the league’s single-season attendance record.
This year’s top performing leagues include the Northwoods and Coastal Plain, both with 11 teams in the Top 50, and the Cape Cod League with six (6) teams. The West Coast League also had six (6) teams making the grade, including the previously unranked Corvallis Knights (#35), the second-year Walla Walla Sweets (#22) and Cowlitz Black Bears (#49), and the inaugural Klamath Falls Gems (#46). View rankings here.