Music City Bowl's economic impact down slightly in 2012

Tuesday, April 9, 2013 at 7:43am

The 2012 Music City Bowl had a $13.9 million economic impact on Nashville, bowl officials announced Tuesday.

That is the third-lowest economic impact since the bowl began pitting schools from the Atlantic Coast Conference and Southeastern Conference in 2006. Only the 2008 (Vanderbilt-Boston College, $9.9 million) and 2009 bowls (Kentucky-Clemson, $12.6 million) reaped less.

The high mark in that span belongs to the 2007 bowl between Kentucky and Florida State, which raked in $27.1 million.

With Vanderbilt playing North Carolina State in the 2012 bowl, out-of-town visitors were down to 29,575.

By comparison, though, the number was significantly better than the last time Vanderbilt played in the bowl. In 2008, only 17,498 visitors journeyed into Nashville to watch the Commodores win their first bowl since 1955.

In 2012, a total of 13,026 hotel room nights were booked in order to see Vanderbilt cap off a historic nine-win season with a 38-24 win over N.C. State.

With an 11 a.m. kickoff on New Year’s Eve — a Monday — the 15th Music City Bowl had a national TV audience of 1.9 million viewers. The 1.62 national household rating is the lowest in seven years. A double-overtime thriller between North Carolina and Tennessee in 2009 drew 7.1 million viewers in addition to setting the attendance record with 69,143 in the stands.

Locally, the game posted an 11.0 household rating and was watched in 111,302 households in the Nashville market.

Game attendance was up slightly from 2011, when 55,208 gathered in LP Field to watch Mississippi State play Wake Forest. The 2012 matchup had 55,801 in attendance for the third-lowest total since 2006.

“The bowl has once again delivered on its track record of providing great results from an attendance and economic impact standpoint,” bowl chairman Brad Lampley said. “The word has clearly gotten out to both out-of-town fans and local fans alike that this is a great fan experience, and the numbers from the last several years confirm that. We could not be more excited about the bowl’s future in the college football landscape.”