The fans came out in record numbers for the recent NCAA Tournament.
The host site George Mason set the NCAA Tournament expanded field era record with a total attendance of 14,773 people.
This was more than a 2,000-person increase from the total attendance for the NCAA Tournament last season at UCLA. It also broke the previous total attendance record during the expanded field era of 14,211 people, which Long Beach State set having one less on-site match in 2019.
“I am so proud that the George Mason athletic department wanted to host our national championship again after 2020,” coach Jay Hosack said to Off the Block. “When I interviewed for the job in 2015, [associate athletics director] Ron Shayka, and I chatted about this vision of what we could do, and our athletic department staff ran with it. I was hoping we wouldn’t drop the ball. Not only did we not drop the ball, but I, along with so many other coaches, fans, and administrators thought we hit it out of the park.”
George Mason was awarded the NCAA Tournament for this year after it was initially slated to be the host site in 2020. The NCAA Tournament that season was canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Along with the total attendance record, George Mason had an attendance of 6,942 people for UCLA’s win against Hawai’i in the NCAA Tournament finals on Saturday.
This was the highest attendance for a NCAA Tournament finals played on the East Coast in the history of the event. In addition, it was the third-highest finals attendance during the expanded field era.
The NCAA Tournament expanded field era started in 2014 when the event increased from four teams to six teams. A seventh team was added in 2018, but the first opening-round match was not played at the championship site until 2021.