Mississippi State was venturing into the Northeast for the first time in 30 years, while UMass was roughly 100 miles removed from its Amherst campus when the two teams met for Saturday’s non-conference matchup in Foxborough, Mass.

So nobody should really be all that surprised that the game drew only a sparse announced crowd of 13,074 who bothered to show up at Gillette Stadium, home of the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots.

Sep 24, 2016; Foxborough, MA, USA; A general view of Gillette Stadium prior to the game between the Mississippi State Bulldogs and the Massachusetts Minutemen. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

The game only became a reality last year when Tulane backed out of a game that had been scheduled to have been played at MSU’s Davis Wade Stadium, leaving the Bulldogs scrambling to find an opponent for this week.

UMass agreed to a three-game series between the schools, with the Minutemen scheduled make return trips to Davis Wade Stadium in Starkville on Sept. 23, 2017 and Oct. 17, 2020.

The NFL, however, remains the undisputed King of the Hill in the Northeast and it was readily apparent Saturday.

AttendanceGameDateVenue
102,455Florida at TennesseeSept. 24Neyland Stadium
101,821Kent State at AlabamaSept. 24Bryant-Denny Stadium
87,451LSU at AuburnSept. 24Jordan-Hare Stadium
67,751Arkansas vs. Texas A&MSept. 24AT&T Stadium
65,843Georgia at Ole MissSept. 24Vaught-Hemingway Stadium
53,472Delaware State at MissouriSept. 24Memorial Stadium/Faurot Field
51,702South Carolina at KentuckySept. 24Commonwealth Stadium
23,674Vanderbilt at Western KentuckySept. 24L.T. Smith Stadium
13,074Mississippi State vs. MassachusettsSept. 24Gillette Stadium