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Browns have more fans than Steelers Fanfare:



Published: Sun, January 27, 2002 @ 12:00 a.m.



Browns have morefans than SteelersFanfare:

Who has better fans? The Browns or the Steelers? Let's look at the facts.

Maximum capacity of Three Rivers (TRS) was 59,600. The NFL defines a sellout as 90 percent ticket sales. So by definition, those glorious record sellouts that Steeler fans like to blather on about amounted to a dismal 53,640 tickets per game. Can you imagine any Browns fan bragging about those kinds of ticket sales?

The real measure of fan support however is attendance, and that is where Steeler fans should be embarrassed. During their four Super Bowl seasons, average per-game attendance at TRS was 48,756, 47,231, 48,991 and 48,616, respectively. Based on the size of the stadium, that represents an average no-show rate of about 19 percent.

Even more embarrassing, in '99, the Steelers posted 39,428 against the Panthers and in '88 they seated a whopping 36,051 against the Dolphins. In the past 12 years, Steeler attendance fell into the 30-thousand range 11 times. On 12/17/89, the Steelers posted 26,594 against New England.

With a new stadium and a winning team, Heinz Field should be seeing decent crowds. As soon as the Steelers face some difficulties however, I imagine that the historical tendency of Steelers no shows will resume.

The Browns have routinely placed an average of 25,000 more fans in the seats per game and are recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as having the world's largest organized group of fan support through the Browns Backer Club, which is now even represented in Europe.

When it comes to fan support, Browns fans win, hands down.

Tom Volinchak

Youngstown




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