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Spring Game Comparisons

Michigan has 5500 fans show up at its (free) spring game.
Ohio State has 50,000+ pay $5 for theirs
Alabama has to turn people away at the gates.

So why the differences?

It's obvious at least in the case of Alabama. In a football-crazy state, one of the two big schools gets a new coach with national-championship and NFL credentials. Ohio State, on the other hand, was on the cusp of the national championship, and have similar success in the recent past.

Michigan: the last three year, lose the last two games, one being to their biggest rival and the other being in a bowl game, and with 3 of them (OSU2004, NEB, USC) being upset losses. On top of simply not being as football-crazy as people in Alabama or Ohio State (be honest, Michigan is a basketball state), that can't fully explain a discrepancy of 10-to-20 times as many people.

Weather is another explanation. The weather for Michigan's "game" was really shitty. It was not bad for either OSU or Bama. However, would there have been THAT many more peopel with better weather? Doubt it.

The main issue is the publicity and the selling of the program. Most schools other than Michigan have a real spring game, on TV, with a lot of publicity. Michigan does not. Obviously, with injuries this year, it wasn't really feasible, but that hasn't been true in the past, still without a spring game. Michigan should move forward, and get its publicity machine going, and move into the 21st century, to generate a buzz about the program.

This helps in every facet of the game, from recruiting, to simply winning over fans in your own state, and so on.

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“Spring Game Comparisons”