The SEC's winning on the field and also winning at the turnstiles.
For the 14th straight year (among FBS conferences), the SEC attracted the most fans, totaling 6,369,898 spectators for an average of 75,832 per game, followed by the Big Ten (71,439), the Big 12 (63,265), Pac-12 (52,249) and ACC (51,406).
Of the 13 FBS teams that played in front of more than one million fans each during the course of the season -- including home, road and neutral sites -- six were from the SEC (Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, LSU and Tennessee). There were also six from the Big Ten (Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State, Nebraska, Wisconsin and Michigan State). The 13th team to do so was Texas.
CBS Sports' national coverage of the SEC on CBS was the highest-rated regular-season college football package on any network for the third consecutive season, averaging a national household rating/share of 4.2/9. The SEC on CBS notched the three highest-rated 2011 college football telecasts -- LSU vs. Alabama with a 11.5/20 rating/share; LSU vs. Georgia in the SEC championship game with a 7.3/15 rating/share; and LSU vs. Arkansas with 6.3/15 rating/share.
ESPN's telecast of the Allstate BCS National Championship Game attracted the second-highest number of households (16,072,268) of any program in the history of cable television with an average of 24,214,000 viewers, also second best in cable history. The only cable telecast with a larger audience was the previous season's BCS Championship on ESPN. For the BCS National Championship Game, Birmingham, Ala., averaged a 61.2 rating, best of all metered markets, and New Orleans averaged a 53.3 overnight rating, second best in the nation.
The FOX broadcast of the AT&T Cotton Bowl was the most-viewed non-BCS bowl with 8.4 million viewers for the Arkansas-Kansas State matchup. The Outback Bowl on ABC between Michigan State and Georgia was the second-most viewed non-BCS game with 8.2 million viewers.