Category Archives: Boxing

More Than Half of Americans Want Vaccine Proof, Social Distancing and Masks As Sports Venues Move to Full Capacity

Among Sports Fans 60 Percent Favor Vaccine Requirement for Event Attendance;
72 Percent Want Social Distancing Sections

South Orange, NJ, May 26, 2021 – As many states move to “reopen” and allow full capacity at sports venues, sports fans and the general public seemingly remain cautious about event attendance without proof of vaccination, the wearing of masks and/or social distancing.

These were the findings of a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted May 21-24 geographically spread across the United States using a national representative sample weighted according to gender, age, ethnicity, education, income and geography based on U.S. Census Bureau figures. The Poll surveyed 1,554 adult respondents with a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percent.

Social Distance Seating
A rather large number – 68 percent of the general population, 72 percent of self-described sports fans and 77 percent of avid fans – favored designated areas within venues to separate those who wished to maintain social distance seating.

Proof of Vaccination
As to a requirement by sports teams that attendees of sporting events show proof of vaccination, 53 percent of the general population agreed. The number went up to 60 percent in favor of such a requirement among sports fans and to 71 percent for avid fans.

As for wearing masks while attending sporting events, it was 52 percent of the general population in favor of this requirement, while 56 percent of sports fans and 59 percent of avid fans agreed.

The respondents who disagreed with these precautionary requirements at sporting event venues were comparatively low. For special sections, it was 18-17-15 percent (general public, sports fans, avid fans); for vaccination proof, 32-29-20 percent disagreeing, and for mask wearing, 32-33-30 percent disagreeing.

Fans Who Would Attend Sporting Events with Vaccine, PPE and Social Distancing Up 7% Continue reading

Vaccine Changing Attitudes Towards Attending Sporting Events

South Orange NJ, January 29, 2021 – As the pandemic began to take hold in April 2020, a Seton Hall Sports Poll asked respondents if they would attend a live sporting event – 72 percent said “No.”

In the Sports Poll completed this week, only 41 percent said “No” to attending an outdoor sporting event while 49 percent said “No” to indoors.

Although both questions posited social distancing and PPE as a condition of attending, the most recent poll asked respondents if they would attend if they also had received a coronavirus vaccine.

“Now that the vaccine is no longer an abstraction but a reality, people are beginning to seek some form of normalcy,” said Professor Charles Grantham, Director of the Center for Sport Management within the Stillman School of Business, which oversees the Seton Hall Sports Poll. “This is certainly encouraging for sports leagues and their players, who last March could see no end in sight.”

The poll was conducted January 22-25 among 1,522 adults, geographically spread across the country. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percent.
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Nearly 3 of 4 Americans Say They Won’t Attend Games Without Coronavirus Vaccine Developed

South Orange NJ, April 9, 2020  — While sports commissioners, governments and medical experts debate when to reopen sports leagues, a huge majority of Americans including a substantial majority of sports fans are prepared to stay home until the development of a vaccine for Coronavirus.

Asked what they would do if the leagues resumed play before the development of a vaccine, 72 percent of Americans said they would not attend games, with 12 percent saying they would if social distancing could be maintained.  Only 13 percent said they would feel safe attending as in the past.  Among sports fans the number drops to a still significant 61 percent.

Medical experts have repeatedly put the timeline for approval of a vaccine into 2021, although they have not ruled out an existing drug proving effective for treatment this year.  Seventy-four percent of Americans thought it was possible, likely or very likely that sports would be cancelled for the rest of this year.

If the Policy of Social Distancing Continues into the Fall, Should NFL Start Up?
And if social distancing continues into the fall, 70 percent thinks the NFL should not start up to insure the players safety, with 20 percent saying the league should resume but allow the players to choose not to play, and only six percent saying the league should start up as planned.

These were the results of a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted this week among 762 Americans across the country on both landlines and cellphones.  The Poll has a margin of error of +/- 3.6 percent.

“This virus has the attention and respect of the nation,” noted Rick Gentile, director of the Seton Hall Sports Poll, which is sponsored by the Sharkey Institute within the Stillman School of Business.  “Those who identify as sports fans, at all levels of interest, line up closely with the general population in regard to their own safety and that of the players.”

Play Games without Fans Present?
As for the possibility of playing games with no fans present, a similar number – 76 percent – said they would watch broadcasts of the games with the same interest as before, with only 16 percent saying they would be less interested and 7 percent saying they would be more interested.

Did Leagues Shut Down at the Right Time?
Make no mistake – sports fans miss their sports…but also respect the devastating power of the virus.  Seventy-six percent said sports shut down at the right time, with 16 percent saying not quickly enough and six percent saying too quickly.

Eighty-four percent felt the IOC acted appropriately in postponing this year’s Olympic Games to 2021, with only 14 percent saying they acted too quickly.

Should Teams Pay Stadium Workers?
And asked whether teams have an obligation to pay daily arena and stadium workers for time missed because of the virus, 59 percent said yes and 33 percent said no.


One of the country’s leading Catholic universities, Seton Hall has been showing the world what great minds can do since 1856. Home to nearly 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students and offering more than 90 rigorous academic programs, Seton Hall’s academic excellence has been singled out for distinction by The Princeton Review, U.S. News & World Report and Bloomberg Businessweek.

Seton Hall embraces students of all religions and prepares them to be exemplary servant leaders and global citizens. In recent years, the University has achieved extraordinary success. Since 2009, it has seen record-breaking undergraduate enrollment growth and an impressive 110-point increase in the average SAT scores of incoming freshmen. In the past decade, Seton Hall students and alumni have received more than 30 Fulbright Scholarships as well as other prestigious academic honors, including Boren Awards, Pickering Fellowships, Udall Scholarships and a Rhodes Scholarship. The University is also proud to be the third most diverse national Catholic university in the nation.

During the past five years, the University has invested more than $165 million in new campus buildings and renovations. And in 2015, Seton Hall launched a School of Medicine as well as a College of Communication and the Arts. The University’s beautiful main campus in suburban South Orange, N.J. is only 14 miles from New York City — offering students a wealth of employment, internship, cultural and entertainment opportunities. Seton Hall’s nationally recognized School of Law is located prominently in downtown Newark. The University’s Interprofessional Health Sciences (IHS) campus in Clifton and Nutley, N.J. opened in the summer of 2018. The IHS campus houses the University’s College of Nursing, School of Health and Medical Sciences and the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine at Seton Hall University.

For more information, visit

About the poll:

The Seton Hall Sports Poll is conducted by the Sharkey Institute within the Stillman School of Business. This poll was conducted by telephone April 6-8 with 762 respondents, 348 from a landline frame and 414 from a cell frame by Braun Research Incorporated with remote live telephone interviewers being monitored by an all at-home staff. .

. Phone numbers were dialed from samples of both standard landline and cell phones.  The error for subgroups may be higher. This poll release conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls. The Seton Hall Sports Poll has been conducted regularly since 2006.Recently chosen for inclusion in iPoll by Cornell’s Roper Center for Public Opinion Research, its findings have been published everywhere from USA Today, ESPN, The New York Times, Washington Post, AP, and Reuters to Fox News and most points in between.

Media: Media: Marty Appel,;
Michael Ricciardelli, Associate Director of Media Relations, Seton Hall, 908-447-3034

The results:

  1. Do you think the US professional sports leagues acted too quickly in closing down their schedules, not quickly enough or acted at the right time?


1 – Too quickly                           6
2 – Not quickly enough             16
3 – Right time                              76
4 – Don’t know/No opinion                    2


  1. The 2020 Tokyo Olympics was originally scheduled to take place from late July to early August of this year but has been rescheduled to the same time period in 2021. Do you think the International Olympic Committee acted too quickly moving an event scheduled so far in advance?


1 – Yes                                                  14

2 – No                                        84

3 – Don’t know/No opinion      3


  1. If some form of social distancing is continuing in the fall do you think the NFL should:

1 – Start up as planned                                                                     6

2 – Start up but allow players to choose not to play                   20
3 – Not start up to ensure players safety                                      70
4 – Don’t know/No opinion                                                                4

  1. It has been suggested that sports be cancelled through the end of 2020. How likely do you think this is a possibility?


1 – Very likely                                      12

2 – Likely                                              16

3 – Possible                                           46

4 – Won’t happen                                 24

5 – Don’t know/No opinion                    2

  1. If sports were to resume play later this year but before a vaccine for coronavirus is developed would you feel safe attending a game, only if there was restricted attendance and social distancing or not at all?

1 – Safe                                     13

2 – Safe but only if social distancing      12

3 – Not at all                                         72

4 – Don’t know/No opinion                    3

  1. Do you think professional teams have an obligation to pay daily arena/stadium workers for time missed because of the coronavirus?

1 – Yes                                                  59

2 – No                                                   33

3 – Don’t know/No opinion                    7

  1. For the remainder of 2020, do you think sports should eventually be played with fans present, played with restricted attendance practicing social distancing, played but with no fans present or sports should not be played at all

1 – Fans present                                    12

2 – Restricted attendance                      23

3 – No fans present                               21

4 – Not at all                                         40

5 – Don’t know/No opinion                    5


  1. If sports are played without fans will you be more interested, less interested or have the same interest in watching a broadcast of the game?

1 – More interested                                 7

2 – Less interested                                 16

3 – Same interest                                   76

4 – Don’t know/No opinion                    2


  1. How much would you say you miss having the opportunity to watch live sports, very much, some, not much or not at all?

1 – Very much                                      29

2 – Some                                               24

3 – Not at all                                         18

4 – Don’t know/No opinion                  29

  1. How closely would you say you follow sports, very closely, closely, not closely or not at all?

1 – Very closely                                    17

2 – Closely                                            37

3 – Not closely                                      26

4 – Not at all                                         20


Manning’s Public Approval Unscathed by Recent Accusations; Curry Still Well Behind LeBron, Kobe, in Approval Poll

Pizzi’s 7 Marathons-7 Continents-7 Days Draws Near-Super Bowl Attention

South Orange, NJ, February 25, 2016 — Despite recent accusations hurled at Peyton Manning over PED use (by Al Jazeera) and his behavior in college, his approval ratings remain high among the American public and seemingly not influenced by the negative publicity at all.

The Seton Hall Sports Poll asked 762 adults across the country (using landlines and cellphones), for approval or disapproval on a number of star athletes this week. Manning had a 68% approval rating, with only 3% disapproving of him. This is consistent with previous Seton Hall Sports Polls — in fact, his highest approval (or favorable) rating yet. (The poll has a margin of error of +/- 3.6%).

Date  Polled         Feb 2016         Oct 2013*        Sept 2012*      Nov 2011*

Approve                      68                  64                           62                    65

Disapprove                   3                    4                             3                      4

* Earlier polls asked “favorable/unfavorable”

And while basketball fans have become enamored with Steph Curry, his approval rating still trails established veterans LeBron James and the retiring Kobe Bryant. Curry had a 40% approval rating (with a remarkable 1% disapprove), while James had a 53% (9% disapprove) and Bryant a 51% approval (with 11% disapproving).

After James left Cleveland for Miami with a press announcement that was not well received, his approval was 40%, his disapproval 16%. (Seton Hall Sports Poll, November, 2010).

“It seems right to say that he has recovered from that PR blip of six years ago,” noted Rick Gentile, director of the Poll, which is sponsored by The Sharkey Institute.

Other athletes in the poll included boxer Manny Pacquaio (28% to 15%), Cam Newton (37% vs. 11%), and Patrick Kane (16% vs 3%).

Summary of all:

            Athlete            Approve          Disapprove      No Opinion

Manning            68                      3                        29

Newton              37                    11                        52

Bryant                 51                    11                        38

Curry                   40                       1                        59

Pacquaio             28                     15                        57

James                   53                        9                        39

Kane                     16                        3                        81

Most Admired Sports Accomplishment

Manning’s Super Bowl victory also led the results in a question of which recent accomplishment was most admired, but his 37% was not that far ahead of a strong 31% for runner Becca Pizzi, who completed seven marathons on seven continents in seven days. Bryant’s All-Star farewell had 14% and Denny Hamlin’s Daytona 500 victory had 7%. (Among women, Pizzi’s accomplishment was a virtual dead heat with Manning’s Super Bowl win, with 34% to Manning’s 33%).

PED Use Ban
New York Mets relief pitcher Jenrry Mejia recently became the first Major Leaguer banned for life after testing positive for a banned substance for the third time. 47% felt the punishment was right, and only 7% considered it too harsh. 32% thought it should have been banishment after one or two failed tests.

Ticket Purchasing
Respondents were also asked about their ticket buying habits for sports events. 43% said they bought sports tickets online, with only 18% saying “the box office.” 19% said they got them from friends. Ticketmaster outpolled StubHub 55% to 26% as the go-to choice, but when asked if they would likely go to a site with a relationship to the team, 56% said yes.

Looking Forward to…
Asked what event they are most looking forward to, respondents gave a slight nod to the NCAA basketball tournament with 30% to the start of baseball season at 28%. The NBA playoffs drew 17%. Among African-Americans, the result was heavily in favor of the NBA (48%), with the NCAA at 27% and MLB at 13%).

Rick Gentile will do a Podcast on this poll with Seth Everett. To stream, : To download:


One of the country’s leading Catholic universities, Seton Hall University has been a catalyst for leadership — developing students in mind, heart and spirit — since 1856. Home to nearly 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students and offering more than 90 academic programs, Seton Hall’s academic excellence has been singled out for distinction by The Princeton Review, U.S.News & World Report and Bloomberg Businessweek.

Seton Hall, which embraces students of all religions, prepares its graduates to be exemplary servant leaders and global citizens. Its attractive main campus is located in suburban South Orange, New Jersey, and is only 14 miles by train, bus or car from New York City, offering a wealth of employment, internship, cultural and entertainment opportunities. The university’s nationally recognized School of Law is prominently located in downtown Newark.

For more information, visit

About the poll:
This poll was conducted by telephone February 22-24 among 762 adults in the United States. The Seton Hall Sports Poll is conducted by the Sharkey Institute.

Phone numbers were dialed from samples of both standard landline and cell phones. The error due to sampling for results based on the entire sample could be plus or minus 3.6 percentage points. The error for subgroups may be higher. This poll release conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.

The Seton Hall Sports Poll has been conducted regularly since 2006.

Media: Media: Marty Appel Public Relations,

The results

  1. Which athlete’s recent accomplishment do you most admire: Peyton Manning’s second Super Bowl win; Denny Hamlin’s victory driving in the Daytona 500; Kobe Bryant appearing in his 18th and last NBA All-Star game or Becca Pizzi completing 7 marathons on 7 continents in 7 days?

Manning 37%

Hamlin 7

Bryant 14

Pizzi 31

Other 12


  1. Which event are you most looking forward to, the major league baseball season, the NBA playoffs or the NCAA Basketball Tournament?

Baseball 28

NBA 17


Don’t know 25

  1. Recently Jenrry Mejia, a relief pitcher for the New York Mets, was suspended for life by Major League Baseball for testing positive for a banned substance for the third time. Do you think banishment after testing positive three times is too harsh, just right, should be after 2 times, or should a player be banished after the first positive test?

Too harsh 7

Just right 47

Should be after 2 times 16

Should be after first time 16

Don’t know 14


  1. How many sports events would you say you’ve attended in the past year?

None 32

Fewer than 5 34

Between 5 and 10             17

More than 10 17


  1. When you are looking for tickets, where do you get them: box office, friends, on line, or another way?

Box office 18

Friends 19

On line 43

Other 12

Don’t know 9


  1. Which on line service do you use to acquire tickets, Ticketmaster, StubHub, Vivid Seats, Ticket City, Ticket Exchange or some other?

Ticketmaster 55

StubHub 26

Vivid Seats 2

Ticket City 2

Ticket Exchange 2

Other 14

  1. If your favorite team had a relationship with one of the online ticket retailers, would you be

more likely to go to them first?

  1. Yes 56
    No 27
    Don’t know 17

Now I’m going to ask you your opinion of several prominent sports figures. Please tell me whether you approve, disapprove or have no opinion of the following people:

  1. Peyton Manning

Approve 68

Disapprove 3

No opinion 29

  1. Cam Newton

Approve 37

Disapprove 11

No opinion 52

  1. Kobe Bryant

Approve 51

Disapprove 11

Don’t know 38

  1. Steph Curry

Approve 40

Disapprove 1

Don’t know 59

  1. Manny Pacquaio

Approve 28

Disapprove 15

Don’t know 57

  1. LeBron James

Approve 53

Disapprove 9

Don’t know 39

  1. Patrick Kane

Approve 16

Disapprove 3

Don’t know 81

  1. How closely do you follow sports, very closely, closely, not closely or not at all?

Very closely 18

Closely 38

Not closely 30

Not at all 14

Rick Gentile in The New York Times, ‘Blood and Sport’

Rick Gentile, Seton Hall faculty member and Director of the Seton Hall Sports Poll, was featured in this NY Times video report that looks at the violence of football amidst concerns about the health and well being of football players.  The news report, “Blood and Sport,” asks whether these concerns could have an impact on football’s popularity in the way that similar concerns, stemming from the death of a boxer on a televised bout, led to a precipitous decline in corporate sponsorship for, and then the popularity of, boxing.

Gentile, a former Executive Producer and Senior Vice President of CBS Sports, was asked to weigh in.

rick-gentile-ny times-seton hall