College Sports Attendance & Gender – Update 2

So I decided to add a little more to the project than I had originally planned. Considering the website I was using to collect data had data all the way back from 2009, I thought seeing how differences were playing out over time would be interesting to see. I also decided to reevaluate the ratio I was using earlier. The way I was calculating ratios made comparisons between schools effective. However, the t-tests I was running were focusing on the differences between the men’s and women’s ratio. Programs that were large had a big difference between the ratios that implied that one program would be way more popular than the other, when actually the difference was fairly small relative to the attendance size. I decided for each school to divide the women’s ratio by the men’s ratio; value below one shows that the program attendance favors the men’s team; values above one favor the women’s team.

With that, here is what I found for the 2017-2018 season, which was the main focus on my analysis:


If it is difficult to read, the side labels read Hockey, Lacrosse, Soccer, Baseball/Softball, and Basketball. I’m planning to make the final graphs in excel so the image quality is higher. You can see that soccer is much higher than the rest, with a ratio value of .923. All the values are below 1, suggesting that the men’s programs are favored in attendance.

When I did my analysis over time, I discovered that attendance data only went back so far for some sports; at most, I could find data for both men’s and women’s teams going back 6 seasons. This analysis is not as effective as it could be because the time period is too short to really draw any conclusions.

Here is what I was able to make (baseball/softball was excluded due to missing data as discussed above):


I expected the ratios in all the sports to rise, since gender inequality in sports has received more attention in recent years, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. Basketball and lacrosse seem to be increasing, but the other sports are not.

I think it is important to note that this analysis is rather ad hoc; I don’t believe that we should be drawing any conclusions about attendance rates purely from these figures and numbers. I will go into more detail on that in my final post. I also hope to look closer at the basketball data, since it was the most reliable and abundant dataset of all the sports.