The OKC regional averaged roughly 9,700 fans for two sessions in 2008 with Notre Dame, Texas A&M, Tennessee and Duke. A crowd of 9,341 attended the regional final when the Volunteers defeated A&M to advance to the Final Four en route to Summit's last national title.
The following year, attendance increased when top-seeded OU made a Final Four run.
In 2009, the OKC women's regional averaged nearly 11,000 fans with OU, Purdue, Rutgers and Pittsburgh. A crowd of 11,529 attended the final when the Sooners defeated the Boilermakers.
The Thunder's success slightly affected NCAA men's tournament second- and third-round games in Oklahoma City in 2010. The event was close to capacity, but previous NCAA men's tournaments in OKC were automatic sellouts.
“It wasn't as negative as it was perceived,” Brassfield said. “It coincided with the surge of the Thunder but college basketball across the country dipped some, too. (In future years) we'll see how this market responds with professional basketball.”
With the Sooners advancing as a No. 6 seed, attendance totals could approach, perhaps surpass, the 2008 and 2009 Oklahoma City women's regionals.
“It creates a tremendous amount of excitement for this community when a local team is involved,” Brassfield said. “Volunteers pick up their step a little bit. We're excited about all the teams that advanced here.”
2013 NCAA Oklahoma City Regional
When: Sunday (OU vs. Tennessee at 3:30 p.m.; Baylor vs. Louisville at 6 p.m.); Tuesday (8 p.m.)
Where: Chesapeake Arena
Tickets: All-sessions tickets — courtside levels ($48); end zones ($35); Individual session tickets — courtside levels ($32), end zones ($21), go on sale on Thursday.
Phone numbers: 1-800-745-3000; (405) 236-5000.