James Madison, North Dakota State, Jacksonville State and Montana all draw great crowds at home and have been traditional FCS powers for years, but did you know none of those aforementioned FCS programs crack the top seven when it comes to drawing the biggest crowd in an FCS vs. FCS game in 2017?
That's right, four of the best five crowds in the FCS this year have come at neutral sites. Legendary venues like the SuperDome, Legion Field in Birmingham (Ala.), the Cotton Bowl in Dallas and Camping World Stadium have combined to put more than 230,000 fans in the stands for just four neutral site games, and the Yale Bowl hosted the other — the biggest 'on campus' facility in the FCS.
The Bayou Classic bested the field last week, while Yale's quest for its first outright Ivy League title in 37 years and of course the tradition of 'The Game' with Harvard certainly brought the alumni out.
Take a look below at the FCS' Top 35 crowds so far, along with the best crowds for FCS schools that visited Power Five stadiums this year — and the top crowds for FCS conferences that didn't have a game crack the Top 35 list. All below:[divider]
|2||61,221||Alabama St(*)||Alabama A&M||Legion Field|
|3||55,231||PV A&M(&)||Grambling||Cotton Bowl|
|5||47,819||Bethune-Cookman (!)||Florida A&M||Legion Field|
|6||47,407||Jackson St(#)||Tennessee State||Liberty Bowl|
|7||26,792||SF Austin(%)||Sam Houston||NRG Stadium|
|9||25,944||Montana||E Washington||Wash. Grizzly|
|11||25,442||Alabama St||Tuskegee||New ASU Stad|
|15||25,067||Florida A&M||NC A&T||Bragg|
|18||23,738||Alcorn St||Southern||Jack Spinks|
|21||22,228||Montana||Savannah State||Wash. Grizzly|
|23||21,509||Alcorn St||PV A&M||Jack Spinks|
|24||21,500||NC A&T||Delaware State||Aggie Stad|
|24||21,500||NC A&T||N.C. Central||Aggie Stad|
|26||21,127||Tennessee St(@)||Austin Peay||Nissan Stad|
|27||20,466||Montana||Northern Ariz.||Wash. Grizzly|
|28||19,817||Montana St||South Dakota St||Bobcat Stad.|
|29||19,557||Montana St||Weber State||Bobcat Stad.|
|30||18,987||Montana St||Portland State||Bobcat Stad.|
|31||18,892||North Dakota St||Missouri State||Fargodome|
|32||18,721||Delaware||William & Mary||Delaware Stad.|
|33||18,687||North Dakota St||Northern Iowa||Fargodome|
|34||18,630||North Dakota St||Western Illinois||Fargodome|
|35||18,585||Jackson St||Alabama St||Miss. Veterans|
(@) – Bayou Classic on Nov. 28; (*) – Magic City Classic on Oct. 28; (&) – State Fair Classic on Oct. 7; (#) – Southern Heritage Classic on Sept. 9; (%) – Neutral site Southland Conference game at NRG Stadium – home stadiums not big enough; (@) – Tennessee State home game played at Nissan Stadium in Nashville. (!) – Florida Classic in Orlando.