WKU could play in front of capacity crowd for first time since 2014

Junior guard Lamonte Bearden waves to the crowd after a 83-51 WKU victory over Eastern Kentucky. Bearden finished with 16 points.

Jeremy Chisenhall

The WKU ticket office officially announced a sell out of Diddle Arena for Saturday’s game against Middle Tennessee State on the office’s Twitter page

WKU has not played in front of a capacity crowd since Mar. 20, 2014, when the Hilltoppers played No. 4 ranked Louisville. The announced attendance was 7,598 which eclipsed Diddle Arena’s capacity of 7,326. Certain areas of the arena were standing room only. 

Diddle Arena has had an announced attendance at or beyond capacity for men’s games 13 times since the arena’s 2002-03 renovation. Four of those have come against MTSU, and six have come against Power 5 opponents. 

This would be the first capacity crowd that WKU has had under head coach Rick Stansbury. Stansbury has been vocal all year about wanting to sell out Diddle Arena. 

There has been a considerable uptick in attendance this season, as the average home attendance through the first nine games has been 4,587. Last season the average home attendance was 3,915. 

WKU has had a home crowd of 4,000+ for every game since the team’s return from the Bahamas, where they upset then No. 18-ranked Purdue and SMU in back-to-back games in the Battle 4 Atlantis Tournament. Purdue is now ranked No. 3 in the country. 

Sports Editor Jeremy Chisenhall can be reached at (859) 760-0198 and [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @JSChisenhall