So exactly how loud is it in the JMHC?

My inner engineering nerd got the best of me and I downloaded an app from NIOSH that measures noise levels. The last few games I had thought that the U had finally figured out that they should turn down the PA. It was either that, or I’ve suffered permanent hearing loss between basketball games and the classic rock cover band I play in. Anyway, I ran the app for the 3 minutes of PA blasting through the introduction of Coach K. What the numbers showed was an average of 92.6 dB over the three minutes, with a peak value of about 107dB. That’s pretty loud, but in the tolerable range for short stretches (i.e. under 15 minutes). Cumulative over a game it may be an issue. For reference 85dB over 8 hours requires hearing protection in the workplace.

My conclusion, it’s still plenty loud in there and they could probably turn it down another notch. When the band is playing and people are singing Utah Man it’s in the mid-80s dB. In my opinion the PA shouldn’t be louder than that.

Add to that, the PA guy sounds like a game show announcer. I can almost hear him saying “Brand new car!” and “Trip to Acapulco!”


What about “Get off My Lawn!”


I for one like to cheer in reaction to something happening on the court. Like some of Carlson’s blocks last Thursday or Allen’s dunk on Saturday. And I can stand and clap to Utah Man when the team takes the floor without being told to so by someone screaming into the microphone.


I’m sure 3 out of 4 who read my post with think or say “get off my lawn”, but here goes…

Last Saturday, my wife, who has been attending games with me for over 25 years, said, in reaction to the game time experience, and particularly to the volume of the PA system and the Monster Truck Show style announcer, “please don’t renew my seat next year!”. She has texted the fan experience number and called the box office to complain, on several occasions, receiving (of course) no sympathy, or satisfaction.

Now here’s my complaint - I get that the people in charge, and this started with Larry, think that the ONLY way to increase fan enthusiasm is to mimic the NBA experience at the JMHC. But regularly, I notice the opposite effect. Often, following a timeout or break in the action, the band plays one of their regular tunes, and coming out of the tune has a significant portion of the audience joining in on the “Let’s go Utah! …” or some similar chant, only to have the PA system immediately start playing some NBA arena standard at 105+ db, and drowning out the crowd.

Watch what is actually going on in the arena during the next (absurd over-) production taking place during Ute team player introductions. Watch as the lights return and the music stops - many/most people appear very happy to have it over with.

Now, here’s the thing: I get the idea of progress, and modernization, but if I wanted to experience an NBA game, I’d buy Jazz season tickets - I DON’T! I want to experience a college basketball game, so for many years I’ve purchased Ute tickets.

There is something to be said for tradition. You don’t think that if you go to a Duke, Michigan State, Kansas, or an NC game, that you’ll be listening to any standard NBA hype-tunes, at 105+ db do you?

It’s the same in College football. Got to Michigan, Alabama, Florida, USC, and you’ll be listening along with happy audience members to bands playing traditional music, and crowds joining in; not “WE MUST PROTECT THIS HOUSE” at 108 db.


That’s terrible. It’s not like the place is packed. They should really listen to the people that are actually going to the games.


It pains me to say so, but the U could learn a lot about game experience and atmosphere from…

BYU basketball games.

I went to a Utah v BYU game down there a couple of years ago, and have been to one or two others since that game, and other than the bizarre time they handed out light sticks and then collected them back, the atmosphere and what they do to get the crowd excited is pretty fun. My observation, being middle-aged is it seemed to be stuff that everyone from college kids to old farts like you guys above (I’m kidding - I think) enjoyed and was into. Music was a range of stuff, the intermission entertainment was almost always good and the crowd was into it.

So, we’ve got the tech to do some cool stuff, but not a lot of good ideas - and yes as a guy who is losing his hearing I am sensitive to being in those types of environments now. The powers that be who decide that sort of stuff really should head 45 minutes south for a few games, and even turn it down a notch or two.


The “NBA game experience” sucks. It really does. Whoever is producing the games and force-feeding us canned music at ridiculous volumes is doing a bad job. Also, the pregame introductions/highlight video/fireworks probably don’t need to take 15 minutes.


I have watched some games around the PAC 12 on TV this season and noticed that few have taken the high dB approach. The only one that I really noticed does is USC. UCLA most definitely does not. In my old guy opinion, the organic noise of cheering at appropriate times like for defense in a tight game is the best. Being told to get on my feet for the Young Living Ball Toss, which will not come close to me in Sec Q Row 24, is the worst.


I’m with salUTE. It’s more like a monster truck ad.

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This clip is A+ certified red blooded college basketball, no out of control speaker noise needed here (scroll to 1:17): YouTube


Agreed, 100%! During the Majerus era, the JMHC crowds were as large and loud as the crowd in the video. Perhaps, it will turn out, that some significant part of any current problems with attendance or crowd involvement are not the fault of the CROWD.

Once I combined a ski trip to Utah with co-worker and a Ute basketball game, Van Horn’s Senior Night. My co-worker was/is pretty ignorant of college basketball. Bantering with people in the Alta lift line my co-worker took it in when a couple commented about Van Horn’s excellence. We sat in the second to last row at the top of the Huntsman Center. A few seconds before tip off my co-worker announced that he could not see one empty seat in the entire arena. As Van Horn started off the Utes offensive possessions by hitting three 3’s and a two pointer, trying to be part of the group my co-worker naively yelled out, I expect Van Horn to get a hundred tonight.