An Exploratory Examination of Attributes Influencing Students' Decisions to Attend College Sport Events

Mauricio Ferreira
Ketra L. Armstrong

This study employed a two-stage procedure to examine the attributes influencing 142 college students?preferences for and frequency of attending their university’s men’s and women’s hockey and basketball games. In stage one, a direct questioning approach of 53 students, the respondents referenced 21 different college sports and generated a composite list of 41 attributes in their general choice criteria for sport attendance. In stage two, a factor analysis of the responses from a sample of 89 students was performed to identify the structure of the 41 attributes. Discriminant analysis and regression analysis revealed the attributes most differentiating and important to consumers' preferences for these sports were the ones directly related to the core product: degree of sport popularity and physical contact displayed during competition. Differences were found based on the sport (basketball or hockey) and the gender of the sport participants (men’s sports or women’s sports). Implications and strategies for marketing the respective sport events were presented.