While College Football is often about size and huge venues, the smallest stadiums in the FBS also deserve some mention, including Peden Stadium in Athens, Ohio, the often empty FIU Stadium in Miami, and the spectacle known as the Kibbie Dome in Moscow, Idaho.
All the stadiums featured in the bottom 10 of College Football venue sizes come from the “minors” like Conference USA, MAC and the Sun Belt. The smallest “Power Conference” stadium is Martin Stadium in Pullman (32,248), home of Washington State, but some of their games are played at CenturyLink Field in Seattle.
10th Smallest – Yager Stadium (Miami RedHawks), 24,286
Opened in 1983, it was named after Fred C. Yager, class of 1914, who was the lead benefactor in the project to build the stadium. It has an unbalanced layout, with the west grandstands being 20 rows taller than the east (student) grandstands. There are no seats in the South endzone under the scoreboard.
9th – Kidd Brewer Stadium (Appalachian State Mountaineers), 24,050
New to the FBS and the Sun Belt conference, Appalachian State, the Mountaineers have been playing there since 1962. More than 31,000 set the record attendance there in a 34-31 win over Elon in 2010. Nicknamed as “The Rock”, it was named Conrad Stadium when it first opened, but was renamed after Kidd Brewer in 1988.
8th – Peden Stadium (Ohio Bobcats), 24,000
The home of the Bobcats since 1929, it is known as the Wrigley Field of College Football and has a record attendance of 25,893 in a 2012 game against New Mexico State. It was renamed Peden Stadium in 1946, after Don Peden.
7th – Doyt Perry Stadium (Bowling Green Falcons), 23,724
Home of the Falcons since 1966, its capacity has actually been reduced over the years, reaching just over 30,000 from 1982 to 2002. It is named for Doyt L. Perry, a former coach and Athletic Director. The record capacity is just over 33,000 in a 1983 game against Toledo.
6th – Scheumann Stadium (Ball State Cardinals), 22,500
There’s more to Muncie, Indiana, then just being the home of Norville Barnes. Ball State have been playing in Scheumann Stadium since 1967, and hosted an all-time record attendance of 23,861 in 2008 when they played Western Michigan during their unbeaten regular season. It is named after its benefactors.
5th – Houchens Industries–L. T. Smith Stadium at Jimmy Feix Field (Western Kentucky Hilltoppers), 22,113
The Hilltoppers play in Bowling Green, Kentucky, not to be confused with the Falcons who play in Ohio. It has been hosting the Hilltoppers since 1968, with the record attendance record being set in 2012 against Southern Miss, as 23,252 showed up for the game. It is named after the company that helped with the most recent expansion.
4th – Foreman Field (Old Dominion Monarchs), 20,118
New to the FBS, Old Dominion will be playing in Conference USA. The stadium was opened in 1935 and underwent major renovations in 2009. It used to host the Oyster Bowl from 1946 to 1995.
3rd – FIU Stadium (FIU Panthers), 20,000
Opened in 1995, starting out as a 7500-seat venue. Its record attendance is in a 2011 game against Duke, when 22,682 showed up. With an all-time record of 43-97 and only making a bowl game twice, it’s hard to get fans excited about coming to see the Panthers.
2nd – Warren McGuirk Alumni Stadium (UMass Minutemen), 17,000
UMass go back to playing at Warren McGuirk, the school’s athletic director from 1948-1971, as they enter the FBS after a transitional period. They’ll play only half their home games there in the 2014 season, with the others being played at Gillette Stadium, which is also the home of the New England Patriots.
1st (Smallest) – Kibbie Dome (Idaho Vandals), 16,000
From 1971 until 1975, it was called the Idaho Stadium and was an outdoor stadium, but got the Domed addition in 1975. It was renamed after William H. Kibbie, a construction executive from Salt Lake City and a primary benefactor of the project. The record attendance of 17,600 is from 1989, when Idaho played Boise State in the schools’ I-AA Big Sky era.