Welcome!

News Feed Item

Football Continues to be America's Favorite Sport; the Gap With Baseball Narrows Slightly this Year

College football and auto racing remain third and fourth

NEW YORK, Jan. 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Football versus baseball. It's an argument for bars and living rooms all across the nation. But, when it comes to America's favorite sport, football wins. Over one-third of adults who follow at least one sport (34%) say professional football is their favorite sport while just 16% say baseball is their favorite. The gap between the two sports has narrowed from 2011 to 2012 – in 2011 36% said pro football was their favorite while 13% said baseball was their favorite sport.

(Logo:  http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20100517/NY06256LOGO)

These are some of the results of The Harris Poll of 2,176 adults surveyed online between December 12 and 18, 2012 by Harris Interactive.

Looking at how other sports fared, just over one in ten sports fans (11%) say college football is their favorite sport while 8% say it is auto racing, 7% say men's professional basketball, and 5% say hockey.  All other sports are favorites for 3% or less of sports fans.

There are some fluctuations in favorites over time. Since this question was first asked in 1985, professional football has gone up 10 points from 24% of sports fans saying it was their favorite sport then to 34% saying so now. Baseball, on the other hand, has gone down 7 points, from 23% in 1985 to 16% today.  Auto racing and hockey have both gone up 3 points while men's tennis, men's college basketball and horse racing have all gone down 3 points

Who likes football and baseball... and who really doesn't
When it comes to the top sports, different groups are more likely to cite them as favorites. African Americans (48%), those aged 40-49 years (41%), and Westerners (40%) are more likely to say professional football is their favorite sport, while those aged 18-24 (23%), college graduates (27%), and Southerners (30%) are less likely to do so. When it comes to baseball, Midwesterners (20%), those aged 50-64 (19%), and Conservatives (19%) are more likely to cite it as their favorite sport; those aged 25-29 (8%), households with income under $35,000 (11%) and Southerners (12%) are least likely to say baseball is their favorite.

So What?
The past year has been a bruising one for more than one professional sports league.  NFL was rocked by the one-two punch of March's bounty scandal and fan outcry over the replacement referees in September.  Meanwhile, professional hockey is only now poised to return – three months later than normal due to a player lockout.  However, both seem to be holding their own in terms of fan interest, with neither suffering pronounced year over year drops – an indication that fan passion has thus far persevered.

That said, there are other options for sports lovers.  College football continues to be a powerhouse, and with a hotly anticipated four-team playoff system replacing the current BCS system in 2014, fan ardor could well see an uptick.  If the professional leagues aren't careful about restoring or maintaining their images, college sports could be the beneficiaries.



TABLE 1

FAVORITE SPORT

"If you had to choose, which ONE of these sports would you say is your favorite?"

Base: All adults who follow one or more sport


1985

1989

1992

1993

1994

1997

1998

2002

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Pro football

24

26

28

24

24

28

26

27

Baseball

23

19

21

18

17

17

18

14

College football

10

6

7

8

7

10

9

9

Auto racing

5

4

5

6

5

5

7

10

Men's pro basketball

6

7

8

12

11

13

13

11

Hockey

2

3

3

3

5

4

3

3

Men's soccer

3

2

2

1

3

3

4

3

Men's college basketball

6

10

8

8

8

6

4

4

Men's golf

3

4

4

6

5

6

4

4

Track & field

2

2

1

1

2

2

3

1

Bowling

3

5

2

2

1

1

2

2

Men's tennis

5

4

4

4

3

3

4

1

Boxing

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

Horse racing

4

3

3

2

2

2

2

1

Women's tennis

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

3

Swimming

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

Women's pro basketball

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

*

1

Women's soccer

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

Women's college basketball

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

1

1

Women's golf

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

Not sure

*

1

4

1

2

2

1

3

Pro football's lead over baseball

1

7

7

6

7

11

8

13

Note 1: NA = Not asked in that year. Men and women's sports were not always distinguished

Note 2: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding.

Note 3: "*" indicates less than 0.5%


 


TABLE 1 (continued)

FAVORITE SPORT

"If you had to choose, which ONE of these sports would you say is your favorite?"

Base: All adults who follow one or more sport


2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

CHANGE

1985–2012

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

%

Pro football

29

30

33

29

30

31

35

31

36

34

10

Baseball

13

15

14

14

15

16

16

17

13

16

-7

College football

9

11

13

13

12

12

12

12

13

11

1

Auto racing

9

7

11

9

10

8

9

7

8

8

3

Men's pro basketball

10

7

4

7

4

6

5

6

5

7

1

Men's college basketball

6

6

5

5

4

5

3

4

5

3

-3

Hockey

3

4

5

4

5

5

4

5

5

5

3

Men's tennis

2

1

1

2

1

1

1

2

2

2

-3

Boxing

NA

2

2

1

1

2

2

1

2

1

NA

Horse racing

2

1

2

1

2

1

2

1

2

1

-3

Swimming

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

2

1

1

2

2

NA

Men's golf

5

4

4

4

4

4

4

2

2

2

-1

Track & field

3

1

*

2

1

1

1

2

1

1

-1

Men's soccer

3

3

2

2

2

3

2

4

1

2

-1

Bowling

1

1

1

1

2

1

1

2

1

1

-2

Women's tennis

2

2

1

1

*

1

1

1

1

1

NA

Women's pro basketball

1

*

*

*

*

*

*

-

*

*

NA

Women's soccer

NA

1

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

*

NA

Women's college basketball

*

1

*

1

1

*

*

-

*

1

NA

Women's golf

1

*

*

1

*

*

*

*

*

*

NA

Not sure

1

2

2

3

2

1

2

3

1

2

NA

Pro football's lead over baseball

16

15

19

15

15

15

19

14

23

18

17

Note 1: NA = Not asked in that year. Men and women's sports were not always distinguished

Note 2: Percentages may not add up to 100% due to rounding.

Note 3: "*" indicates less than 0.5%


 


TABLE 2

DEMOGRAPHIC VARIATIONS IN FAVORITE SPORTS

"If you had to choose, which ONE of these sports would you say is your favorite?"

Base: All adults who follow more than one sport

Sport

All Adults

Highest

Lowest

%


%


%

Pro football

34

African Americans

48

Those aged 18-24

23

Those aged 40-49

41

College grads

27

Westerners

40

Southerners

30

Baseball

16

Midwesterners

20

Those aged 25-29

8

Those aged 50-64

19

Income $34.9K or less

11

Conservatives

19

Southerners

12

College Football

11

Those aged 18-24

23

Easterners

3

Post grads

18

African Americans

4

Southerners

18

Hispanics

5

Auto Racing

8

Those living in rural areas

16

African Americans

*

Those aged 65+

12

Those aged 30-39

1

Education of HS or less

11

Post grads

2



Methodology
This Harris Poll was conducted online within the United States between December 12 to 18, 2012 among 2,176 adults (aged 18 and over), 1,476 of whom say they follow at least one sport. Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents' propensity to be online.

All sample surveys and polls, whether or not they use probability sampling, are subject to multiple sources of error which are most often not possible to quantify or estimate, including sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, error associated with question wording and response options, and post-survey weighting and adjustments. Therefore, Harris Interactive avoids the words "margin of error" as they are misleading. All that can be calculated are different possible sampling errors with different probabilities for pure, unweighted, random samples with 100% response rates. These are only theoretical because no published polls come close to this ideal.

Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have agreed to participate in Harris Interactive surveys. The data have been weighted to reflect the composition of the adult population. Because the sample is based on those who agreed to participate in the Harris Interactive panel, no estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.

These statements conform to the principles of disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.

The results of this Harris Poll may not be used in advertising, marketing or promotion without the prior written permission of Harris Interactive.

J42319
Q955, 960

The Harris Poll® #3, January 17, 2013
By Regina A. Corso, SVP, Harris Poll and Public Relations, Harris Interactive

About Harris Interactive
Harris Interactive is one of the world's leading market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll® and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers proprietary solutions in the areas of market and customer insight, corporate brand and reputation strategy, and marketing, advertising, public relations and communications research. Harris possesses expertise in a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Additionally, Harris has a portfolio of multi-client offerings that complement our custom solutions while maximizing our client's research investment. Serving clients in more than 196 countries and territories through our North American and European offices, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us – and our clients – stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit www.harrisinteractive.com.

Press Contact:
Corporate Communications
Harris Interactive
212-539-9600
[email protected]  

SOURCE Harris Poll

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 19th Cloud Expo, Robert Doyle, lead architect at eCube Systems, will examine the issues and need for an agile infrastructure and show the advantages of capturing developer knowledge in an exportable file for migration into production. He will introduce the use of NXTmonitor, a next-generation DevOps tool that captures application environments, dependencies and start/stop procedures in a portable configuration file with an easy-to-use GUI. In addition to captur...
Who are you? How do you introduce yourself? Do you use a name, or do you greet a friend by the last four digits of his social security number? Assuming you don’t, why are we content to associate our identity with 10 random digits assigned by our phone company? Identity is an issue that affects everyone, but as individuals we don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ben Klang, Founder & President of Mojo Lingo, discussed the impact of technology on identity. Sho...
Fact is, enterprises have significant legacy voice infrastructure that’s costly to replace with pure IP solutions. How can we bring this analog infrastructure into our shiny new cloud applications? There are proven methods to bind both legacy voice applications and traditional PSTN audio into cloud-based applications and services at a carrier scale. Some of the most successful implementations leverage WebRTC, WebSockets, SIP and other open source technologies. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Da...
A critical component of any IoT project is what to do with all the data being generated. This data needs to be captured, processed, structured, and stored in a way to facilitate different kinds of queries. Traditional data warehouse and analytical systems are mature technologies that can be used to handle certain kinds of queries, but they are not always well suited to many problems, particularly when there is a need for real-time insights.
In his session at DevOps Summit, Tapabrata Pal, Director of Enterprise Architecture at Capital One, will tell a story about how Capital One has embraced Agile and DevOps Security practices across the Enterprise – driven by Enterprise Architecture; bringing in Development, Operations and Information Security organizations together. Capital Ones DevOpsSec practice is based upon three "pillars" – Shift-Left, Automate Everything, Dashboard Everything. Within about three years, from 100% waterfall, C...
You think you know what’s in your data. But do you? Most organizations are now aware of the business intelligence represented by their data. Data science stands to take this to a level you never thought of – literally. The techniques of data science, when used with the capabilities of Big Data technologies, can make connections you had not yet imagined, helping you discover new insights and ask new questions of your data. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Sarbjit Sarkaria, data science team lead ...
WebRTC has had a real tough three or four years, and so have those working with it. Only a few short years ago, the development world were excited about WebRTC and proclaiming how awesome it was. You might have played with the technology a couple of years ago, only to find the extra infrastructure requirements were painful to implement and poorly documented. This probably left a bitter taste in your mouth, especially when things went wrong.
"We provide DevOps solutions. We also partner with some key players in the DevOps space and we use the technology that we partner with to engineer custom solutions for different organizations," stated Himanshu Chhetri, CTO of Addteq, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
DevOps tends to focus on the relationship between Dev and Ops, putting an emphasis on the ops and application infrastructure. But that’s changing with microservices architectures. In her session at DevOps Summit, Lori MacVittie, Evangelist for F5 Networks, will focus on how microservices are changing the underlying architectures needed to scale, secure and deliver applications based on highly distributed (micro) services and why that means an expansion into “the network” for DevOps.
WebRTC is bringing significant change to the communications landscape that will bridge the worlds of web and telephony, making the Internet the new standard for communications. Cloud9 took the road less traveled and used WebRTC to create a downloadable enterprise-grade communications platform that is changing the communication dynamic in the financial sector. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Leo Papadopoulos, CTO of Cloud9, discussed the importance of WebRTC and how it enables companies to focus o...
Providing secure, mobile access to sensitive data sets is a critical element in realizing the full potential of cloud computing. However, large data caches remain inaccessible to edge devices for reasons of security, size, format or limited viewing capabilities. Medical imaging, computer aided design and seismic interpretation are just a few examples of industries facing this challenge. Rather than fighting for incremental gains by pulling these datasets to edge devices, we need to embrace the i...
Web Real-Time Communication APIs have quickly revolutionized what browsers are capable of. In addition to video and audio streams, we can now bi-directionally send arbitrary data over WebRTC's PeerConnection Data Channels. With the advent of Progressive Web Apps and new hardware APIs such as WebBluetooh and WebUSB, we can finally enable users to stitch together the Internet of Things directly from their browsers while communicating privately and securely in a decentralized way.
All organizations that did not originate this moment have a pre-existing culture as well as legacy technology and processes that can be more or less amenable to DevOps implementation. That organizational culture is influenced by the personalities and management styles of Executive Management, the wider culture in which the organization is situated, and the personalities of key team members at all levels of the organization. This culture and entrenched interests usually throw a wrench in the work...
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo 2016 in New York. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be! Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, is co-located with 20th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry p...
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud taking place June 6-8, 2017, at Javits Center, New York City, is co-located with the 20th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long developm...