Tag Archives: Advertising

26% Think NFL May Not Make It To Super Bowl, Are ‘Doubtful’ Season Finishes Successfully

South Orange NJ, November 29, 2020  — Twenty-six percent of Americans surveyed doubt the NFL will conclude its season successfully. Asked if they thought it doubtful the NFL will make it through the playoffs and complete the Super Bowl in this year of Coronavirus, 26 percent agreed. Among self-described sports fans the number of those who doubt that the NFL will successfully complete the season moved up to 29 percent; however, an equal number of sports fans (29 percent) felt the opposite and did not doubt the season will successfully conclude. The remainder neither agreed nor disagreed.

These were the findings of a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted November 13-16 among 1,506 American adults, geographically spread across the country. The Poll has a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percent.

And although 25 percent of those queried believe that the aggregate “shuffling” of the NFL schedule to accommodate teams with cases of coronavirus “takes away from the integrity of the season,” 48 percent said they thought it was “no big deal” to reschedule a game.

“It is a different kind of year,” said Professor Charles Grantham, Director of the Center for Sport Management within the Stillman School of Business, which oversees the Seton Hall Sports Poll.  “That which seemed certain in years past now is the subject of doubt. The Super Bowl is the most watched sporting and media event in the United States. The fact that 29 percent of sports fans think the Super Bowl itself may be in question is astounding,” said Grantham, who is the former executive director of the National Basketball Players Association.

ABOUT THE POLL

The Seton Hall Sports Poll, conducted regularly since 2006, is performed by the Sharkey Institute within the Stillman School of Business. This poll was conducted online by YouGov Plc. using a national representative sample weighted according to gender, age, ethnicity, education, income and geography, based on U.S. Census Bureau figures. Respondents were selected from YouGov’s opt-in panel to be representative of all U.S residents. This poll release conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls. The Seton Hall Sports Poll has been chosen for inclusion in iPoll by Cornell’s Roper Center for Public Opinion Research and its findings have been published everywhere from USA Today, ESPN, The New York Times, Washington Post, AP, and Reuters to CNBC, NPR, Yahoo Finance, Fox News and many points in between.

Media:  Michael Ricciardelli, Associate Director of Media Relations, Seton Hall University
michael.ricciardelli@shu.edu, 908-447-3034; Marty Appel, AppelPR@gmail.com

The Results:  

November 2020 SHSP Tables

Q4 Since the start of the NFL season, multiple players have tested positive for Coronavirus (COVID-19), leading to NFL games being postponed during the season. To what extent do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements? Please select one option on each row.

  • The shuffling of the NFL schedule takes away the integrity of the season
N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 26% 33% 11% 39% 33% 29% 10% 23%
Neither agree nor disagree 47% 36% 70% 27% 34% 42% 70% 61%
Disagree 27% 31% 19% 34% 33% 29% 20% 16%

 

  • It is not a “big deal” if a game is rescheduled
N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 48% 56% 32% 65% 56% 53% 32% 25%
Neither agree nor disagree 38% 28% 57% 24% 26% 33% 57% 61%
Disagree 14% 16% 11% 11% 18% 14% 11% 14%

 

 

  • It is doubtful that the NFL will make it through the playoffs and complete the Super Bowl
N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 26% 29% 18% 40% 28% 28% 18% 11%
Neither agree nor disagree 52% 42% 72% 28% 41% 49% 72% 70%
Disagree 22% 29% 10% 32% 31% 23% 10% 19%

The “agree” percentage in the release is based on combining those who strongly or somewhat agree.

November 2020 SHSP

  1. Which, if any, of the following statements best describes your interest in sports?

 

  1. I am an avid sports fan (i.e., I plan everything I do around sporting events) (10%)
  2. I am an average sports fan (i.e., I enjoy sports and I watch sports when I can) (31)
  3. I am a casual sports fan (i.e., if the game is part of a social event, I’ll watch) (24)
  4. I am not a sports fan (33)
  5. Don’t know/no opinion (2) 

 

  1. Since the start of the NFL season, multiple players have tested positive for Coronavirus (COVID-19), leading to NFL games being postponed during the season. To what extent do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements? Please select one option on each row.

The shuffling of the NFL schedule takes away the integrity of the season

  1. Strongly agree (11%)
  2. Somewhat agree (14)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (47)
  4. Somewhat disagree (14)
  5. Strongly disagree (13)

 

It is not a “big deal” if a game is rescheduled

  1. Strongly agree (20%)
  2. Somewhat agree (27)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (38)
  4. Somewhat disagree (8)
  5. Strongly disagree (6)

It is doubtful that the NFL will make it through the playoffs and complete the Super Bowl

  1. Strongly agree (10%)
  2. Somewhat agree (16)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (52)
  4. Somewhat disagree (14)
  5. Strongly disagree (8)

 

ABOUT SETON HALL UNIVERSITY

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 among the most diverse national Catholic universities in the country.

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 www.shu.edu.

 

61% Agree with Athletes’ Right to Speak Out for Social Justice; But More than a Third Say It Hinders Desire To Watch Games, Ruins Sports as ‘Escape’

South Orange NJ, November 23, 2020  — While 61 percent of Americans say that athletes have a right to free speech and it is their decision to speak out for social justice, 35 percent call sports their “escape” and don’t want to see any commentary other than sports. In addition, 36 percent say that athletes speaking out hinders their desire to watch games.

These were the findings of a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted November 13-16 among 1,506 American adults, geographically spread across the country. The Poll has a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percent.

On the question of athletes exercising free speech and making their own decision to speak out, only 15 percent disagreed compared to the 61 percent who agreed that players held that right.  Among self-described sports fans, those who agreed that players held that right to speech was 69 percent.

On the question of sports being an escape and not wanting to see any commentary on subjects other than sports, almost an equal number agreed and disagreed. While 36 percent said they saw sports as an escape and did not want to hear commentary from athletes outside of sports, 37 percent felt otherwise. Among sports fans, however, 46 percent said they saw sports as an escape and would rather not see commentary outside of sports, while 34 percent felt otherwise.

 

Does Social Justice Commentary from Athletes Hinder the Desire To Watch Sports?

Does social justice commentary from athletes hinder the desire to watch sports?  For 35 percent the answer was yes, but 39 percent said that athletes speaking out on social justice issues is not a hindrance.  The rest – about a quarter of the population in each case – neither agreed nor disagreed.

“It marks a fine line for many sports fans, probably across the political spectrum,” said Professor Charles Grantham, Director of the Center for Sport Management within the Stillman School of Business, which oversees the Seton Hall Sports Poll.  “What many Americans seem not to understand is that despite their fame, our black athletes, male and female, have their own histories and experiences with police, mourn the losses of those who look like them and feel the potential dangers of forthcoming encounters.  They are committed to raising the consciousness of America with regard to systemic racism and social injustice.”

“Leagues really need to note the fact, however, that about a third of the population is uncomfortable with these displays of free speech,” said Stillman Professor of Marketing and Poll Methodologist Daniel Ladik.  “That’s a minority, but it’s sizeable if you are trying to sell a product. A number of the leagues have already taken some action but need to continue to explain to consumers why this speech is important.”

Why Are TV Ratings Down?  

Television ratings for both the NFL regular season and the NBA finals are and were down this year, and respondents were asked their opinion why. Twenty-eight percent said they thought that fans are turned off by the social justice efforts by athletes and their leagues, and 24 percent said it was because attention was focused on the November elections.  Twelve percent said it was because too many sports were available while 35 percent had no opinion or did not know.

As To the Strange NBA Season…

The shortened NBA season, with the playoffs staged before no fans and in a bubble, elicited fan reaction in the poll.  Asked if the finals were just as entertaining as in previous years, only 22 percent agreed, with 21 percent disagreeing.  Fifty-seven percent neither agreed nor disagreed, a large number perhaps reflected by the decline in viewership this year. Asked if the finals were dull with no fans in attendance, 25 percent agreed and 15 percent disagreed. Again, a large percentage of the respondents (59 percent) neither agreed nor disagreed.  Asked if it was difficult to follow the NBA Finals because there were too many other sports on TV, only 15 percent agreed while 21 percent disagreed and 62 percent neither agreed nor disagreed.

Only 26% Think NFL Will Make it To Super Bowl

Asked if the they thought it doubtful the NFL will make it through the playoffs and complete the Super Bowl in this year of Coronavirus, 26 percent agreed. Among self-described sports fans the number of those who doubt that the NFL will successfully complete the season moved up to 29 percent; however, an equal number of sports fans (29 percent) felt the opposite and did not doubt the season will successfully conclude. The remainder neither agreed nor disagreed.

“It is a different kind of year,” said Grantham, the former executive director of the the National Basketball Players Association. “That which seemed certain in years past now is the subject of doubt. The Super Bowl is the most watched sporting and media event in the United States. The fact that 29 percent of sports fans think the Super Bowl itself may be in question is astounding.”

Breakdowns Below.

#     #     #

ABOUT THE POLL

The Seton Hall Sports Poll, conducted regularly since 2006, is performed by the Sharkey Institute within the Stillman School of Business. This poll was conducted online by YouGov Plc. using a national representative sample weighted according to gender, age, ethnicity, education, income and geography, based on U.S. Census Bureau figures. Respondents were selected from YouGov’s opt-in panel to be representative of all U.S residents. This poll release conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls. The Seton Hall Sports Poll has been chosen for inclusion in iPoll by Cornell’s Roper Center for Public Opinion Research and its findings have been published everywhere from USA Today, ESPN, The New York Times, Washington Post, AP, and Reuters to CNBC, NPR, Yahoo Finance, Fox News and many points in between.

Media:  Michael Ricciardelli, Associate Director of Media Relations, Seton Hall University
michael.ricciardelli@shu.edu, 908-447-3034; Marty Appel, AppelPR@gmail.com

The Results:  

November 2020 SHSP Tables

Q1 The National Basketball Association (NBA) recently completed its playoffs with the Los Angeles Lakers defeating the Miami Heat for the title. To what extent do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements? Please select one option on each row.

  • The NBA Finals were just as entertaining as previous years
N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 22% 31% 6% 54% 32% 21% 5% 9%
Neither agree nor disagree 57% 44% 81% 21% 41% 57% 82% 72%
Disagree 21% 25% 13% 25% 27% 22% 13% 19%

 

  • The NBA Finals were dull because there were no fans in attendance
N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 26% 34% 8% 49% 35% 27% 8% 12%
Neither agree nor disagree 59% 47% 82% 31% 45% 57% 83% 70%
Disagree 15% 19% 10% 20% 20% 16% 9% 18%

 

  • It was difficult to follow the NBA Finals because there are too many other sports on TV
N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 16% 24% 3% 43% 22% 16% 3% 6%
Neither agree nor disagree 62% 49% 86% 23% 49% 61% 87% 69%
Disagree 22% 27% 11% 34% 29% 23% 10% 25%

 

Q2 During the 2020 sports season, both the NFL’s live TV content and the NBA’s live TV finals had lower ratings compared to last year (i.e., during the 2019 sports season). Which one of the following statements do you think best describes the main reason for the overall drop in ratings?

 

N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

TV ratings are down because there are too many sports available 12% 16% 5% 40% 13% 9% 5% 5%
TV ratings are down because people are paying attention to the November elections 25% 28% 18% 27% 30% 27% 17% 19%
TV ratings are down because fans are turned off by the social justice efforts by athletics and the leagues 28% 32% 21% 21% 35% 33% 22% 12%
Don’t know/no opinion 35% 24% 56% 12% 22% 31% 56% 64%

 

Q3 In recent years, professional athletes and the leagues they play in have taken a strong stand supporting social justice causes. To what extent do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements? Please select one option on each row.

  • Sports are my “escape” and I don’t want to see any commentary other than sports
N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 36% 46% 17% 62% 49% 35% 17% 23%
Neither agree nor disagree 27% 20% 39% 20% 20% 22% 38% 56%
Disagree 37% 34% 44% 18% 31% 43% 45% 21%

 

  • Hearing an athlete speak out about social justice hinders my desire to watch sports
N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 35% 40% 25% 42% 39% 40% 25% 30%
Neither agree nor disagree 27% 20% 39% 20% 21% 19% 38% 48%
Disagree 38% 40% 36% 38% 40% 41% 37% 22%

 

  • Athletes have free speech and it is their decision speak out
N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 61% 69% 44% 75% 71% 63% 48% 22%
Neither agree nor disagree 24% 18% 35% 17% 17% 20% 33% 48%
Disagree 15% 13% 21% 8% 12% 17% 19% 30%

 

Q4 Since the start of the NFL season, multiple players have tested positive for Coronavirus (COVID-19), leading to NFL games being postponed during the season. To what extent do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements? Please select one option on each row.

  • The shuffling of the NFL schedule takes away the integrity of the season
N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 26% 33% 11% 39% 33% 29% 10% 23%
Neither agree nor disagree 47% 36% 70% 27% 34% 42% 70% 61%
Disagree 27% 31% 19% 34% 33% 29% 20% 16%

 

 

  • It is not a “big deal” if a game is rescheduled
N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 48% 56% 32% 65% 56% 53% 32% 25%
Neither agree nor disagree 38% 28% 57% 24% 26% 33% 57% 61%
Disagree 14% 16% 11% 11% 18% 14% 11% 14%

 

 

  • It is doubtful that the NFL will make it through the playoffs and complete the Super Bowl
N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 26% 29% 18% 40% 28% 28% 18% 11%
Neither agree nor disagree 52% 42% 72% 28% 41% 49% 72% 70%
Disagree 22% 29% 10% 32% 31% 23% 10% 19%

The “agree” percentage in the release is based on combining those who strongly or somewhat agree.

November 2020 SHSP

  1. Which, if any, of the following statements best describes your interest in sports?

 

  1. I am an avid sports fan (i.e., I plan everything I do around sporting events) (10%)
  2. I am an average sports fan (i.e., I enjoy sports and I watch sports when I can) (31)
  3. I am a casual sports fan (i.e., if the game is part of a social event, I’ll watch) (24)
  4. I am not a sports fan (33)
  5. Don’t know/no opinion (2) 

 

  1. The National Basketball Association (NBA) recently completed its playoffs with the Los Angeles Lakers defeating the Miami Heat for the title. To what extent do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements? Please select one option on each row.

The NBA Finals were just as entertaining as previous years

  1. Strongly agree (10%)
  2. Somewhat agree (12)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (57)
  4. Somewhat disagree (8)
  5. Strongly disagree (13)

The NBA Finals were dull because there were no fans in attendance

  1. Strongly agree (11%)
  2. Somewhat agree (14)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (59)
  4. Somewhat disagree (7)
  5. Strongly disagree (8)

It was difficult to follow the NBA Finals because there are too many other sports on TV

  1. Strongly agree (6%)
  2. Somewhat agree (9)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (62)
  4. Somewhat disagree (9)
  5. Strongly disagree (12)

 

  1. During the 2020 sports season, both the NFL’s live TV content and the NBA’s live TV finals had lower ratings compared to last year (i.e., during the 2019 sports season). Which one of the following statements do you think best describes the main reason for the overall drop in ratings?

 

  1. TV ratings are down because there are too many sports available (12%)
  2. TV ratings are down because people are paying attention to the November elections (24)
  3. TV ratings are down because fans are turned off by the social justice efforts by athletics and the leagues (28)
  4. Don’t know/no opinion (35)

 

 

  1. In recent years, professional athletes and the leagues they play in have taken a strong stand supporting social justice causes. To what extent do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements? Please select one option on each row.

 

Sports are my “escape” and I don’t want to see any commentary other than sports

  1. Strongly agree (23%)
  2. Somewhat agree (12)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (27)
  4. Somewhat disagree (9)
  5. Strongly disagree (28)

 

Hearing an athlete speak out about social justice hinders my desire to watch sports

  1. Strongly agree (24%)
  2. Somewhat agree (11)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (27)
  4. Somewhat disagree (9)
  5. Strongly disagree (29)

Athletes have free speech and it is their decision speak out

  1. Strongly agree (43%)
  2. Somewhat agree (18)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (24)
  4. Somewhat disagree (5)
  5. Strongly disagree (10)
  6. Since the start of the NFL season, multiple players have tested positive for Coronavirus (COVID-19), leading to NFL games being postponed during the season. To what extent do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements? Please select one option on each row.

The shuffling of the NFL schedule takes away the integrity of the season

  1. Strongly agree (11%)
  2. Somewhat agree (14)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (47)
  4. Somewhat disagree (14)
  5. Strongly disagree (13)

It is not a “big deal” if a game is rescheduled

  1. Strongly agree (20%)
  2. Somewhat agree (27)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (38)
  4. Somewhat disagree (8)
  5. Strongly disagree (6)

It is doubtful that the NFL will make it through the playoffs and complete the Super Bowl

  1. Strongly agree (10%)
  2. Somewhat agree (16)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (52)
  4. Somewhat disagree (14)
  5. Strongly disagree (8)

 

ABOUT SETON HALL UNIVERSITY

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 among the most diverse national Catholic universities in the country.

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 www.shu.edu.

 

 

 

67 Percent of Americans Say No To Indoor Sporting Events Without Vaccine

67 Percent of Americans Say No To Indoor Sporting Events Without Vaccine

South Orange NJ, November 18, 2020  —  Even masked, wearing personal protective equipment and socially distanced, 67 percent of Americans surveyed said they would not attend an indoor sporting event without the availability of a vaccine for COVID-19. Fifty-eight percent said they would not attend an outdoor event under the same circumstances.

Only 21 percent said they would attend an indoor sporting event, with 12 percent saying they did not know or had no opinion; for outdoor events the number of those who said they would attend with PPE and social distancing rose to 28 percent with 14 percent saying they did not know or had no opinion.

These were the findings of a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted November 13-16 among 1,506 American adults, geographically spread across the country. The Poll has a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percent.

A Seton Hall Sports Poll in April of this year, which received widespread international attention and combined indoor and outdoor events, found that 72 percent would not attend these events without access to a vaccine. The poll in April also found that 61 percent of those who described themselves as sports fans said they would not attend.

In this most recent poll, 60 percent of those who described themselves as sports fans said they would not attend indoor events, while 50 percent said they would not attend outdoor events.

“The recent news of vaccine breakthroughs has got to be enormously uplifting to those in the business of selling tickets, be it sports or entertainment,” said Professor Charles Grantham, Director of the Center for Sport Management within the Stillman School of Business, which oversees the Seton Hall Sports Poll.  “Even though the percentages who would not attend have improved since the spring and the onset of the pandemic, these are just awful numbers to ponder.”

Stillman Professor of Marketing and Poll Methodologist Daniel Ladik agreed, “The Pfizer announcement of an imminent and efficacious vaccine was widely published prior to our polling and is presumably reflected in these numbers. An eager nation of sports fans awaits.”

People with Children More Likely to Attend Events
Interestingly, and perhaps related to school and youth athletic events, the number of those who would attend sporting events with PPE and social distancing was greater for those with children under the age of 18. Only 49 percent of these parents said they would not attend outdoor events (compared to 58 percent of the overall population); and 60 percent said they would not attend indoor events (compared to 67 percent overall).

Do Fans in the Stands (Virtual or Otherwise) Make a Difference?
Noting that some professional and college sporting events have allowed fans with limited capacity, the poll also asked whether or not fans in the stands under these circumstances provide an advantage for the home team. Whereas 43 percent of the overall population said they believed the presence of fans provided a “home team advantage,” 53 percent of those who described themselves as sports fans said it did.

In addition, respondents were also asked whether “virtual fans” in stadiums, arenas and TV broadcasts were a good replacement for actual fans. Among the general population, 27 percent felt they were; 26 percent thought they weren’t even noticeable; 11 percent thought they were a distraction; and 36 percent did not know or had no opinion.

Self-described sports fans looked more favorably upon the virtual fans, with 35 percent saying they were a good replacement and 13 percent thinking that they were a distraction. Among the subset of those who described themselves as “avid sports fans,” the number who thought virtual fans were a good replacement was higher (by double digits) than that of sports fans in general.

Is this an Asterisk Season?
Asked to think about the impact of COVID-19 on sports in 2020 (shortened seasons, changes in game formats, etc.) respondents were asked whether or not this year’s champions in professional baseball (Los Angeles Dodgers), basketball (Los Angeles Lakers) and hockey (Tampa Bay Lightning) were “less deserving” than the champions of previous years. Among sports fans, 27 percent thought the Dodgers were less deserving; 31 percent thought the Lakers were less deserving; and 24 percent thought the Lightning were so. Among the smaller subset that described themselves as “avid sports fans,” the number that thought of the teams as less deserving was even higher (by a double digit margin in each case).

“Although many of the leagues tried admirably to salvage their seasons when most thought they would be lost, it’s obvious from these findings that the public has some doubts and concerns,” said Grantham, former executive director of the National Basketball Players Association. “It will be interesting to see how the leagues — and fans — adjust moving forward.”

                                                                                 #  #  #

ABOUT THE POLL

The Seton Hall Sports Poll, conducted regularly since 2006, is performed by the Sharkey Institute within the Stillman School of Business. This poll was conducted online by YouGov Plc. using a national representative sample weighted according to gender, age, ethnicity, education, income and geography, based on U.S. Census Bureau figures. Respondents were selected from YouGov’s opt-in panel to be representative of all U.S residents. This poll release conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls. The Seton Hall Sports Poll has been chosen for inclusion in iPoll by Cornell’s Roper Center for Public Opinion Research and its findings have been published everywhere from USA Today, ESPN, The New York Times, Washington Post, AP, and Reuters to CNBC, NPR, Yahoo Finance, Fox News and many points in between.

Media:  Michael Ricciardelli, Associate Director of Media Relations, Seton Hall University
michael.ricciardelli@shu.edu, 908-447-3034; Marty Appel, AppelPR@gmail.com

The Results:  

Q1.Would you attend… A live outdoor sporting, with personal protection equipment (PPE), socially distancing measures, and restricted attendance, before a Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine is widely available?

  1. Yes, I would attend (28%)
  2. No, I would not attend (58)
  3. Don’t know/no opinion (14)

Q2.Would you attend… A live indoor sporting, with personal protection equipment (PPE), socially distancing measures, and restricted attendance, before a Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine is widely available?

  1. Yes, I would attend (21%)
  2. No, I would not attend (67)
  3. Don’t know/no opinion (12)

Q3.Thinking about the impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) on the current sports season (e.g., shortened sports seasons, changes in game formats, etc.)… To what extent do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements? Please select one option on each row.

Q4.The Los Angeles Lakers (2019-2020 NBA Champions) are a less deserving champion than previous NBA champions

  1. Strongly agree (13%)
  2. Somewhat agree (10)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (51)
  4. Somewhat disagree (8)
  5. Strongly disagree (17)

Q5.The Tampa Bay Lighting (2019-2020 NHL Champions) are a less deserving champion than previous NHL champions

  1. Strongly agree (8%)
  2. Somewhat agree (10)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (56)
  4. Somewhat disagree (9)
  5. Strongly disagree (17)

Q6.The Los Angeles Dodgers (2020 MLB Champion) are a less deserving champion than previous MLB champions

  1. Strongly agree (9%)
  2. Somewhat agree (11%)
  3. Neither agree nor disagree (52%)
  4. Somewhat disagree (10)
  5. Strongly disagree (18)

Q7.In stadiums where fans were not allowed to attend, many teams featured “virtual fans” on screens in the arena or as part of the TV broadcast. Which, if any, of the following statements best describes your thoughts about this practice? Please select the option that best applies.

  1. Virtual fans were a good replacement for actual fans (27%)
  2. Neutral – virtual fans weren’t even noticeable (26)
  3. Virtual fans were a distraction to my overall enjoyment of the game (11)
  4. Don’t know/no opinion (36)

Q8.Some professional and college sporting events have allowed fans, but with limited capacity. Do fans in the stands, even in a limited capacity, provide an advantage for the home team?

  1. Yes, the fans provide an advantage (43%)
  2. No, the fans do not provide an advantage (22)
  3. Don’t know/no opinion (35)

November 2020 SHSP Tables

Q1 Would you attend… A live outdoor sporting event, with personal protection equipment (PPE), socially distancing measures, and restricted attendance, before a Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine is widely available?

 

N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Yes, I would attend 28% 39% 8% 60% 40% 30% 8% 11%
No, I would not attend 58% 50% 73% 30% 51% 57% 75% 40%
Don’t know/no opinion 14% 11% 19% 10% 9% 13% 17% 49%

 

Q2 Would you attend… A live indoor sporting event, with personal protection equipment (PPE), socially distancing measures, and restricted attendance, before a Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccine is widely available?

N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Yes, I would attend 21% 29% 8% 48% 29% 22% 8% 8%
No, I would not attend 67% 60% 79% 43% 63% 65% 80% 49%
Don’t know/no opinion 12% 11% 13% 9% 8% 13% 12% 43%

 

Thinking about the impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) on the current sports season (e.g., shortened sports seasons, changes in game formats, etc.). To what extent do you agree or disagree with each of the following statements? Please select one option on each row.

Q3a The Los Angeles Lakers (2019-2020 NBA Champions) are a less deserving champion than previous NBA champions

N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 24% 31% 9% 49% 32% 23% 8% 17%
Neither agree nor disagree 51% 40% 74% 22% 35% 51% 75% 58%
Disagree 25% 29% 17% 29% 33% 26% 17% 25%

 

Q3b The Tampa Bay Lighting (2019-2020 NHL Champions) are a less deserving champion than previous NHL champions

N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 18% 24% 7% 39% 25% 16% 6% 17%
Neither agree nor disagree 54% 44% 76% 30% 41% 56% 78% 55%
Disagree 28% 32% 17% 31% 34% 28% 16% 28%

 

Q3c The Los Angeles Dodgers (2020 MLB Champion) are a less deserving champion than previous MLB champions

N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Agree 20% 27% 8% 40% 29% 18% 7% 18%
Neither agree nor disagree 52% 40% 73% 30% 34% 53% 75% 51%
Disagree 28% 33% 19% 30% 37% 29% 18% 31%

 

Q4 In stadiums where fans were not allowed to attend, many teams featured “virtual fans” on screens in the arena or as part of the TV broadcast. Which, if any, of the following statements best describes your thoughts about this practice? Please select the option that best applies.

 

N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Virtual fans were a good replacement for actual fans 27% 35% 13% 56% 36% 25% 13% 11%
Neutral – virtual fans weren’t even noticeable 26% 34% 11% 26% 38% 32% 13% 4%
Virtual fans were a distraction to my overall enjoyment of the game 11% 13% 7% 9% 13% 13% 6% 14%
Don’t know/no opinion 36% 18% 69% 9% 13% 30% 68% 71%

 

Q5 Some professional and college sporting events have allowed fans, but with limited capacity. Do fans in the stands, even in a limited capacity, provide an advantage for the home team?

N=1,506

 

General

Population

Sports

Fan

Non-Fan Avid

Fan

Avg

Fan

Casual

Fan

Not a

Fan

No

Opinion

Yes, the fans provide      an advantage 43% 53% 24% 62% 56% 45% 25% 14%
No, the fans do not provide an advantage 22% 25% 15% 27% 25% 25% 15% 16%
Don’t know/no opinion 35% 22% 61% 11% 19% 30% 60% 70%

 

ABOUT SETON HALL UNIVERSITY

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 among the most diverse national Catholic universities in the country.

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 www.shu.edu.

 

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.

Olympics?
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.

ABOUT SETON HALL UNIVERSITY

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 www.shu.edu.

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, AppelPR@gmail.com;
Michael Ricciardelli, Associate Director of Media Relations, Seton Hall
michael.ricciardelli@shu.edu, 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

 

75% of Those Who Have Sampled the New XFL Find it More Interesting or About the Same As NFL

South Orange, NJ – February 28, 2020 — As football fans begin to test the new XFL, now three weeks old, 27 percent of those who have watched at least part of a game say they find it more interesting than a typical NFL broadcast, and 48 percent find it just as interesting.  Twenty-four percent say it is less interesting.

While only 26 percent of respondents said they had seen some part of a game during its three weeks on the air, those who saw it liked what they saw.

This was the finding of a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted this week across the country among 693 adults on landlines and cellphones.  The Poll has a margin of error of +/- 3.8 percent.

“It’s early, but that’s terrific news for the XFL,” noted Rick Gentile, director of the Seton Hall Sports Poll, which is sponsored by the Sharkey Institute within the Stillman School of Business. “The NFL is a beloved American institution.  That 75 percent of those who have sampled the XFL find it just as interesting or more so has got to bring big smiles to the XFL founders.”

This was the finding of a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted this week across the country among 693 adults on landlines and cellphones.  The Poll has a margin of error of +/- 3.8 percent.

Extend NFL Season to 17 Games?
The Poll also asked whether people were in favor of extending the NFL season from 16 to 17 games (while reducing the pre-season games to three from four).  Thirty-one percent said they were for the extended schedule because it meant more football, 24 percent were opposed because they were fine with things the way they were, and 28 percent were against it because of the greater risk of injury to the players.

Questions and breakdown below.

About the poll:

This poll was conducted by telephone February 24-26 among adults in the United States. The Seton Hall Sports Poll is conducted by the Sharkey Institute within the Stillman School of Business. 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, AppelPR@gmail.com;
Michael Ricciardelli, Associate Director of Media Relations, Seton Hall
michael.ricciardelli@shu.edu, 908-447-3034

The results:

  1. The NFL has suggested making some dramatic changes to its regular season schedule. The season would be extended to 17 games, reducing the pre-season games to 3 for each team.  Which of the following do you most agree with:

 

1 – I’m for it because it’s more football                                      31

2 – I’m against it because things were fine the way they were   24

3 – I’m against it because an additional game means

additional risk of injury for players                                           28

4- Don’t Know/No Opinion                                                                   17

 

  1. Have you watched any part of an XFL game during the first 3 weeks of the inaugural season?

 

1 – Yes                                      26

2 – No                                       72

3 – Don’t know               3

 

IF YES TO ABOVE

  1. Do you think the XFL broadcast presentation is more interesting than a typical NFL broadcast, less interesting or about the same?

 

1 – More interesting                  27

2 – Less interesting                    24

3 – About the same                   48

4 – Don’t know/No opinion        1

 

 

ABOUT SETON HALL UNIVERSITY

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 www.shu.edu.

NBA and China: 77% of American Public Tell Houston Rockets Owner to Keep and Defend his Tweeting GM

Only 9% think GM should be fired; by 46-36% public supports Adam Silver’s handling; but 69% expressed concern that China has so much influence over an American professional League

South Orange NJ, October 25, 2019  — The American public strongly supports the Houston Rockets general manager’s tweet regarding Hong Kong and China’s rights conflict.   (Daryl Morey, the GM, tweeted support for the Hong Kong protesters seeking freedom from Chinese oversight.  The Chinese reacted with disdain and business with the NBA was threatened).

Only 9 percent of the public thought the Rockets GM, Daryl Morey, should be fired, with 77 percent saying the Rockets should keep him and defend his freedom of speech.  14 percent said they did not know or had no opinion.

In addition, 54 percent of the nation feels Daryl Morey should be applauded for taking a stand supporting the Hong Kong protesters, with only 19 percent saying he should not have sent the tweet because it risked valuable relationships over a foreign domestic issue.  27 percent did not know or had no opinion.

These are the findings of a Seton Hall Sports Poll, conducted this week among 703 adult Americans across the country on both landlines and cellphones.  The Poll has a margin of error of +/-3.8 percent.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver first apologized for the tweet but later backtracked and showed support for freedom of speech.  46 percent of the public felt he handled it well, and 36 percent say he did not, with 18 percent saying they did not know or had no opinion.
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Poll: Equal Pay for Women’s Soccer; Women’s Tennis has More Followers than Men’s Tennis; More Men Follow Women’s Golf than Women.

In a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted nationally last week, 83 percent of Americans said the women’s national soccer team should receive pay equal to the men’s team.

As has been reported, the U.S. women’s soccer team (winners of three World Cups and four Olympic Gold Medals) has sued the U.S. Soccer Federation over equal pay and comparable working conditions with the U.S. men’s team, who have not won any World Cups or Gold Medals. After being made aware of this, and then asked to choose a statement that comes closest to their view, 70 percent of the respondents said women should get equal pay to men in professional sports; 13 percent said women should get equal pay in soccer because of their greater success and seven percent said women should not get equal pay to men in professional sports. Ten percent had no opinion.
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Nearly 40 Percent of NCAA Tournament Viewers Will Watch Online; Twenty-two Percent of Those Who Watch Will Do so at Work

South Orange NJ, March 21, 2019 – As Americans increasingly turn to online devices to follow news and sports, a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted this week reveals that 38 percent of those who will be watching the NCAA Men’s basketball tournament will do so either entirely or partially online.

The poll was asked of 606 adult Americans on both landlines and cellphones, with a margin of error of +/- 4.1%.

Of the men’s tournament, 38 percent of all Americans said they would be watching at least part of the coverage. Split by gender, 49 percent of men said they would be watching the tournament, and 29 percent of women said they would be watching.

Twenty-two percent of all respondents who will be watching also said they will watch the tournament while at work; among males that number rises to 29 percent.
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Many Think Settlement with Kaepernick is Admission of Collusion by NFL

Many Think Settlement with Kaepernick is Admission of Collusion by NFL

45 percent of those polled across the nation said they believed the settlement with Colin Kaepernick was an admission of collusion by the NFL.

By 3-to-1, public thinks Kaepernick’s chance of a new contract in the NFL has now decreased.

South Orange NJ, March 4, 2019 – In a national poll, 45 percent of the public said that they believe the confidential settlement of Colin Kaepernick’s lawsuit against the NFL for collusion was essentially an admission of guilt on the part of the NFL. On the other side, 40 said it was not an admission. Of those polled, 15 percent said they did not know or had no opinion.

White people were evenly divided on whether the settlement amounted to an admission of collusion by the NFL, but African-Americans said they believe it is by a 3 to 1 margin.

Kaepernick is credited with beginning the “anthem protests” in the NFL which drew ire and even boycotts from many football fans as well as President Trump. Although a past poll had shown 32 percent of Americans supported Kaepernick’s protests, which were intended to draw attention to racism in America, roughly 44 percent disapproved, with the rest (24 percent) either having no opinion or not knowing.

In the same poll (September 28, 2017), when asked whether or not NFL players should be ordered to stand for the national anthem or be fired from the team as President Trump had suggested, only 18 percent responded “yes.”

Kaepernick became a free agent in early 2017 and was not hired by any NFL team. He brought suit against the NFL for collusion in keeping him out of the league. He was not hired for the 2018 season either.
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Did Zion’s Sneaker Explosion Hurt the Nike Brand? Nearly One in Five Say ‘Yes’

Did Zion’s Sneaker Explosion Hurt the Nike Brand? Nearly One in Five Say ‘Yes’

Majority feels student athletes should be compensated by sneaker companies for wearing their brands; less support for them receiving pay for playing revenue producing sports

South Orange NJ, March 1, 2019 — It was the sneaker explosion heard round the world, when Duke’s Zion Williamson’s Nike went poof last week in a game against North Carolina. Did all the publicity hurt the Nike brand?

According to a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted this week, nearly 1-in-5 respondents said it was the indicator of the quality of the brand. More than two thirds, 67%, felt it was a one-time fluke.

“That’s a good percentage favoring the one-time mishap,” noted Rick Gentile, director of the Poll, which is sponsored by the Sharkey Institute within the Stillman School of Business. “But 18% (those who felt it represented the brand’s quality), is not a small number. Nike has some rebuilding work ahead – of its image, not just its sneakers.”

These were the findings of a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted this week, with questions asked of 794 adult Americans on landlines and cellphones, with a margin of error of +/- 3.5%.

Compensation for Student Athletes

Meanwhile, a majority of Americans believe that student athletes should be compensated by sneaker companies for the use of their brands in collegiate athletics if they are required to wear the brand, and that students in revenue producing sports – like football and basketball – should receive compensation on top of scholarships and cost of attendance stipends.

On the question of financial compensation for student athletes from sneaker companies – like Nike and Adidas – , the public says “yes” by a margin of 57-36%.

On the question of compensation for participation in revenue generating sports, the margin was closer, with 49% saying “yes” and 46% saying “no.” And while white respondents are in favor of “sneaker compensation” by a 54-41% margin, African-Americans are in favor by 3-1.
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Poll: 70 Percent More Likely to Watch Game If They Wager on It

As leagues move towards embrace of gambling, 70% say they’re more likely to watch a game if they wager, but 61% say it will lead to cheating or fixed games.

South Orange, NJ, November 30, 2018 — If you bet that wagering on a game leads to greater viewership – you’d be right. A survey by the Seton Hall Sports Poll has found that 70% of Americans say they would be more likely to watch a game they bet on.

In a week in which Major League Baseball announced a marketing partnership with MGM Resorts, the era of “No Betting Permitted” signs at ballparks is over, and the fans seem to love it.

But it is a double edge sword – 61% say they believe that legal betting on sports events leads to cheating or the fixing of games.

But oh that 70% of heightened interested in watching games is music to a sports league’s ears. Within that, the poll found that 88% of those age 18-29, the coveted demographic loved by sponsors and hardest to reach – would be more likely to watch if they placed a bet.

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31% of Fans Find NFL Less Enjoyable with New Safety Rules This Year

South Orange, NJ, November 2, 2018– With the NFL having instituted a number of new safety rules this season, the football-loving public has weighed in, with 31% saying the game is less enjoyable, and only 11% saying it is more enjoyable.  54% say it has no effect.

Among men, 35% say it is less enjoyable, and among women, the number is 15%.

“It is noteworthy that men prefer the more violent game, as articulated by President Trump,” noted Rick Gentile, director of the poll, which is sponsored by the Sharkey Institute.

Responses are based on the number of people (469) who have said that they have watched NFL games this season.

The poll was conducted October 29-31 among 839 adults across the country, on landlines and cellphones.  Of the group that has watched the NFL this year, the sampling has a margin of error of +/- 4.6%. Continue reading

Only 11% Like Way DH Rule Employed in World Series, 35% of Americans Watched

South Orange, NJ, November 1, 2018 — The just concluded World Series was the 45th since the designated hitter rule was adopted in 1973 – but the American public is still not happy with the way it is employed.

Only 11% of people surveyed in this week’s Seton Hall Sports Poll opted to keep it as it is — employed only when games are played in American League parks.  47% were divided almost equally on whether they prefer the DH in all games (25%) or in no games (22%).  41% saidthey did not know or had no opinion.

The poll was conduced October 29-31 among 839 adults across the country on landline and cellphone, with a margin of error of +/- 3.4%.

The poll also asked the 65% who said they did not watch the World Series why they did not watch, and while 46% said they had no interest in baseball, only 11% cited no interest in the Boston Red Sox or Los Angeles Dodgers in particular.  (The margin of error for this group was +/- 4.3%).

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Even in ‘Year of Women Running for Office,’ Americans Say Women Athletes Preferable to Politicians

South Orange, NJ, November 1, 2018 — Even in a year filled with stories of women running for elected office more than ever before, Americans prefer women athletes as role models over women politicians by substantial margins, according to a poll conducted this week by the Seton Hall Sports Poll.

Asked who would make a preferable role model, the poll found that by more than a 2-1 margin, (54-24%) people said a professional or collegiate woman athlete over a female politician, and to the question, “if you had a daughter, would you prefer a career in politics or athletics,” 45% said athletics to 29% politics.  The responses were generally consistent among men and women, with men saying “athlete” by 44-31% and women saying athlete by 45-27%.

Still, the importance of women seeking elected office was not overlooked.  Asked if they would be more likely to watch a women’s athletic event or vote for a woman for Congress – 32% said vote for a woman, 7% said watch an athletic event, and 49% said equally likely.

The poll was conducted October 29-31 among 839 adults across the country, on landline and cellphone, with a margin of error of +/- 3.4%.

“Despite the media coverage of the number of women running, untarnished by years in office, the very idea of politicians as role models or politics as a career is not viewed favorably compared to athletics,” noted Rick Gentile, director of the poll, which is sponsored by the Sharkey Institute.   “And given a choice of ‘neither’, only 14% opted for that, a surprisingly low number, given that the two fields are relatively new career paths.”

The poll also asked which women’s sports people were likely to watch, with tennis (33%), basketball (26%) and soccer (16%) leading the way.

Asked if they thought women have an equal opportunity to receive a college scholarship for athletics as men, respondents say yes by a slim 46-43% margin, but asked if women SHOULD have an equal opportunity, an overwhelming 95% said yes.

The Official Seton Hall Sports Poll podcast discussing this topic with Seth Everett and Rick Gentile can be found at https://itunes.apple.com/mt/podcast/seton-hall-sports-poll/id1053266467.

ABOUT SETON HALL UNIVERSITY

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 www.shu.edu.

About the poll:

This poll was conducted by telephone October 29-31 among 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 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, AppelPR@gmail.com; Rick Gentile (917) 881-9489
Michael Ricciardelli, Associate Director of Media Relations, Seton Hall
michael.ricciardelli@shu.edu, 908-447-3034

The results:

  1. Are you more likely to watch a professional women’s athletic event or vote for a women for congress or are they equally likely?

1 – Watch an athletic event: 7%
2 – Vote for a woman for congress: 32%
3 – Equally likely: 49%
4 – Don’t know/No opinion: 11%

  1. How often do you watch women’s sporting events, frequently, occasionally, rarely or never?

1 – Frequently: 8%
2 – Occasionally: 33%
3 – Rarely: 33%
4 – Never: 26%
5 – Don’t know: 1%
(SKIP IF NEVER)

  1. Which women’s sporting event are you more likely to watch: Tennis, golf, basketball, soccer or ice hockey?

(ONLY READ FOUR CHOICES BUT RECORD IF OTHER OR NONE)

1 – Tennis: 33%
2 – Golf: 8%
3 – Basketball: 26%
4 – Soccer: 16%
5 – Ice Hockey: 6%
6 – Other: 9%
7 – None: 1%
8 – Don’t know/No opinion: 1%

  1. Whom do you think makes a better role model, a professional female athlete, a collegiate female athlete or a female politician?

1 – Professional athlete: 28%
2 – Collegiate athlete: 24%
3 – Politician: 26%
4 – Don’t know/No opinion: 22%

  1. If you had a daughter would you prefer she pursues a career in politics or athletics?

1 – Politics: 29%
2 – Athletics: 45%
3 – Neither: 14%
4 – Don’t know/No opinion: 12%

  1. Do you think women have an equal opportunity to receive a college scholarship for athletics as men?

1 – Yes: 46%
2 – No: 43%
3 – Don’t know/No opinion   11%

  1. Do you think women SHOULD have an equal opportunity to receive a college scholarship for athletics as men?

1 – Yes: 95%
2 – No: 3%
3 – Don’t know/No opinion: 2%

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

1 – Very closely: 17%
2 – Closely: 29%
3 – Not closely: 37%
4 – Not at all: 16%

Poll: Tiger, Nike, Kaepernick, Trump, Serena and Urban Meyer

Is Tiger Woods an Endorsement Magnet Again? Seton Hall Sports Poll Suggests He Is. Poll Also Queries Attitudes On Nike, Kaepernick, Trump, Urban Meyer and Serena.

 South Orange NJ, September 28, 2018 — Tiger Woods’s first PGA victory in five years was generally considered a feel-good event for the sport, but can it translate to a return to the endorsement world in which he was once prominent? 70% of respondents said yes, they would expect Woods to get more endorsement opportunities now, to only 16% saying no. Only 9%, however, said they would be more inclined to buy a product bearing his endorsement, while 8% said less inclined and 82% said it would not matter.

Those were the findings of a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted this week among 780 Americans on land lines and cellphones, with a margin of error of +/- 3.6%. The Seton Hall Sports Poll is conducted by the Stillman School of Business and its Sharkey Institute. Rick Gentile is the director.

Effects of Nike Commercial with Kaepernick

The controversial decision by Nike to use Colin Kaepernick in its commercials resulted in 16% saying they would be more inclined to buy Nike products, 26% less inclined and 52% saying it had no effect. Among African-Americans, people were more inclined to buy Nike by a 6-1 margin.

NFL Anthem Ruling?
Meanwhile, on the issue that started it all – the kneeling for the national anthem – 56% said the NFL should leave things as they are as opposed to issuing a ruling on the issue, which 39% favored. Younger respondents – ages 18-29 – by a 3-1 margin, said the matter should be left as is without the issuance of a new rule.

President Trump Tweets on NFL Protests Divisive?
Asked whether President Trump’s tweets about player protests were helpful, 56% said they divided people, 21% said they united people, and 10% said they had no effect.

“A clear majority wants the furor over the NFL player protests put to rest,” said Gentile, “and the presidential tweets on the subject to do the same.”

The Urban Meyer Suspension at Ohio State
Ohio State’s head football coach Urban Meyer suffered a three-game suspension for mishandling a case of domestic abuse by an assistant coach. 34% felt it should have been more severe, and 9% felt it should have been less severe. 32% felt that was an appropriate punishment.

Serena Williams, People Agree Men have More Latitude to Argue in Tennis
Asked for opinions on the Serena Williams clash with tennis officials at the US Open earlier this month, 56% agreed with her that male tennis players are given more latitude to “misbehave” than women players. 37% disagreed. Among men, it was “yes” by a 49-32% margin; among women, it was “yes” by 62-22%.

Asked if race was a factor in her being penalized, 25% said yes, 58% said no. and African-Americans were split evenly.

ABOUT SETON HALL UNIVERSITY

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 www.shu.edu.

About the poll:

This poll was conducted by telephone September 24-26 among 780 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 3.7 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, AppelPR@gmail.com;
Michael Ricciardelli, Associate Director of Media Relations, Seton Hall
michael.ricciardelli@shu.edu, 908-447-3034

The results:

 

1- Do you think the NFL should issue a rule regarding protesting during the playing of the national anthem or do you think the league should leave things alone?

1-Issue a rule                                     39

2-Leave things alone                          56

3-Don’t know/No opinion                  6

 

2- Do you think the main effect of President Trump’s tweets on the subject of NFL players’ on field protesting was to unite people or divide them?

1-Unite people                                   21

2-Divide people                                 56

3-Had no effect                                  10

4-Don’t know/No opinion                 14

 

3- Does the Nike TV commercial featuring Colin Kaepernick make you more inclined, less inclined or have no effect on whether you purchase Nike products?

1-More inclined                                 16

2-Less inclined                                   26

3-No effect                                         52

4-Don’t know/No opinion                  6

 

4- Tiger Woods lost many non-golf endorsement deals a few years ago because he was perceived to be involved in some scandalous behavior. After his victory over the past weekend do you think sponsors will once again reach out to have him endorse products?

1-Yes                                                  70

2-No                                                   16

3-Don’t know/No opinion                 15

 

5- Would you be more inclined to purchase a product endorsed by Tiger Woods, less inclined or would his endorsement not matter?

1-More inclined                                  9

2-Less inclined                                   8

3-Wouldn’t matter                             81

4-Don’t know/No opinion                  3

 

6- Ohio State football coach Urban Meyer was suspended 3-games for mishandling a case of domestic abuse involving one of his assistant coaches. Do you think the punishment of Coach Meyer should have been more severe, less severe or was it appropriate?

1-More severe                                    34

2-Less severe                                      9

3-Appropriate                                    32

4-Don’t know/No opinion                 25

 

7- In the finals of the US Open Tennis Tournament, Serena Williams was penalized for several rules infractions regarding behavior. She claimed that she was punished more harshly than a male player would have been for the same behavior. Do you think male tennis players are given more latitude to misbehave than female players?

1-Yes                                                  56

2-No                                                   27

3-Don’t know/No opinion                 17

 

8- Do you think Serena Williams’s race was a factor in how she was penalized for her behavior during the match?

1-Yes                                                  25

2-No                                                   58

3-Don’t know                                     17

 

9- How closely would you say you follow sports, very closely, closely, not closely or not at all?

1-Very closely                                   20

2-Closely                                           37

3-Not closely                                     32

4-Not at all                                         11

 

63% Say they’ll Watch Olympics, 43% Plan to Use Live Stream

Public says ‘yes’ to criminal charges for gymnastics and college officials in wake of Dr. Nassar trial; big pushback on NBA proposal for gambling on basketball.

S. Orange, NJ, February 7, 2018 — The Winter Olympics in South Korea may be 14 time zones removed from the Eastern Time Zone of the US — but 43% of Americans say they plan to watch NBC’s live streaming content during the Games, with only 48% saying they did not have such plans.

“That is a healthy number of people turning to devices other than television,” noted Rick Gentile, director of the poll, which is sponsored by the Sharkey Institute.   “You might call this the breakthrough year for streaming coverage making a big impact.”

The poll was conducted January 29-31 with random calls to 706 adults on landlines and cellphones across the country, and has a margin of error of +/- 3.8%.

A big chunk of the country — 63% — say they will watch at least some coverage of the Games, which begin Friday, February 8.  That is double those who said “no” (31%) to watching any coverage.

Asked if they would be more likely to buy a product advertising during the Olympics, 87% said it would make no difference, a number that advertising executives would surely debate.  Five percent said they were “more likely” and 5% said “less likely” to buy the product.

Big Pushback on NBA Proposal for Gambling on Games in New York State

The Poll also asked people about a proposal from the NBA that would allow gambling on its games in New York State, using hand held devices and kiosks in addition to casinos and racetracks.  (The league would receive one percent of all wagers).  Asked if the league should be taking such an active role in promoting the legalization of sports gambling, 69% said “no” with only 16% saying “yes,” and 14% in the don’t know/no opinion category.

But there was a clear age difference in support of wagering.  While only 7% of those 45-59 supported the New York State proposal, the number jumped to 19% for those 30-44 and 36 percent for those 18-29.

Criminal Charges for Gymnastics, College Officials in Wake of Dr. Nassar Trial?
A Resounding ‘Yes’ from the Public

Finally, the Poll asked whether Board members from U.S. Gymnastics Federation and officials at Michigan State University should face criminal charges for not acting on complaints from gymnasts regarding Dr. Larry Nassar, the American public shouted “yes” by 78% to just 6%, with 16% saying “don’t know or no opinion.”

 “We have seen resignations in the wake of the Nassar conviction and sentencing,” said Gentile.  “But public opinion says more punishment is needed, and this is really an overwhelming statement.”

The Official Seton Hall Sports Poll podcast discussing this topic with Seth Everett and Rick Gentile can be found at https://itunes.apple.com/mt/podcast/seton-hall-sports-poll/id1053266467.

ABOUT SETON HALL UNIVERSITY

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 www.shu.edu.

About the poll:

This poll was conducted by telephone January 29-31 among 706 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 3.8 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, AppelPR@gmail.com;
Michael Ricciardelli, Associate Director of Media Relations, Seton Hall
michael.ricciardelli@shu.edu, 908-447-3034

The results:

1. A doctor who was employed by the U.S. Gymnastics Federation and practiced medicine at Michigan State University has been convicted of sexually abusing over 100 female gymnasts (including many minors) over a period of decades. As a result, the president and athletic director of Michigan State have resigned as has the entire board of the U.S. Gymnastics Federation. Do you think the gymnastics board members and university officials should face criminal charges for not taking action on the many complaints from victims?

1. Yes                                                  78

2. No                                                     6

3. Don’t know/No opinion               16

2. Do you plan on watching any television coverage of the Winter Olympics from South Korea that will begin on Feb. 8?

1. Yes                                                  63

2. No                                                   31

3. Don’t know                                      6

3. Many of the events during the Olympics will be live streamed by NBC. Do you plan to watch any of the live streaming content?

1. Yes                                                  43

2. No                                                   48

3. Don’t know                                    10

4. Would you be more likely to buy a product advertised during the Olympics, less likely or does it make no difference?

1. More likely                                         5

2. Less likely                                           5

3. No difference                                   87

4. Don’t know                                        3

5. The NBA has proposed a plan for sports gambling to the NY State Senate that would include the league receiving one percent of all wagers and allow wagering on handheld devices and in kiosks as opposed to just casinos and racetracks. Do you think a professional sports league should be taking such an active role in promoting the legalization of sports gambling?

1. Yes                                                  16

2. No                                                   69

3. Don’t know/No opinion               14

Interest in Super Bowl Down, Reflecting Season-long Viewing Trends

Slow Migration to Devices Other Than TV Continues; 22% Look Forward to Commercials More than the Game

S. Orange, NJ, February 1, 2018 — Reflecting a season-long decline in viewership, a Seton Hall Sports Poll conducted this week shows 54% of Americans planning on watching Sunday’s Super Bowl, down from 68% when the same question was asked two years ago.

Interestingly, of those who identified themselves as people who “closely follow” the NFL, 16% say they won’t be watching.

“16% of people who identify themselves as NFL fans is a significant number and reflects the trend of declining ratings that we’ve seen all season,” noted Rick Gentile, director of the poll, which is sponsored by the Sharkey Institute.  “That this seems to be impacting Super Bowl viewership should be a concern to the league, the broadcasters and especially the advertisers.”

The poll was conducted January 29-31 with random calls to 706 adults on landlines and cellphones across the country, and has a margin of error of +/- 3.8%.

Another factor might be the return of the New England Patriots, with 20% of the population feeling less inclined to root for them.  12% said they were more inclined, and 62% said there was no difference.

Viewing on Other Devices
Another slow trend that the league and broadcasters are surely watching is the migration of viewers from traditional TV to alternate devices.  In 2016, 98% said they would be watching the game on television – this year, the number is down to 90%, with 10% citing other devices or a combination of TV and other devices.

Commercials and Halftime Show
22% said they were most looking forward to the game’s commercials, with 61% most looking forward to the  game, and 14% the halftime show  Among men, 76% said they most looked forward to the game, and 11% the commercials.  Among women, 47% cited “the game,” and 32% “commercials.”   60% of the population said they watched the commercials more closely than on other TV shows, and a third of African-American respondents said they most looked forward to the halftime show.

Anthem Protests
The national anthem (stand or kneel) remains a matter of interest to the public, with 27% approving a player protest during the playing of the anthem at the start of the Super Bowl and 44% disapproving, with 25% having no opinion.  The question was also asked of regular season viewing to see if the higher profile of the Super Bowl mattered, and it was a similar breakdown.  These numbers are consistent with previous polls dating back to September 2016.

XFL
Finally, wrestling mogul Vince McMahon’s plans to bring back his football league in 2020 (the XFL), attracted interest in following by 27% of the public, and while 61% said they had no interest.  47% of people who identified as NFL fans said they were interested.  “This seems like a respectable starting point for McMahon’s plan,” said Gentile.

The Official Seton Hall Sports Poll podcast discussing this topic with Seth Everett and Rick Gentile can be found at https://itunes.apple.com/mt/podcast/seton-hall-sports-poll/id1053266467.

ABOUT SETON HALL UNIVERSITY

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 www.shu.edu.

About the poll:

This poll was conducted by telephone January 29-31 among 706 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 3.8 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, AppelPR@gmail.com; Rick Gentile (917) 881-9489
Michael Ricciardelli, Associate Director of Media Relations, Seton Hall
michael.ricciardelli@shu.edu, 908-447-3034

The results:

  1. Will you be watching the upcoming Super Bowl between the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles?

Yes 54%

No 43

Don’t know 4

(IF NO SKIP TO QUESTION 5)

  1. Will you be watching on TV, a mobile device such as phone or tablet, or both TV and a device?

TV 90

Device 3

Both 5

Don’t know 2

  1. Which part of the Super Bowl broadcast do you look forward to the most, the game, the halftime or the commercials?

Game 61

Halftime 14

Commercials 22

  1. Do you tend to watch commercials in the Super Bowl more closely, less closely or about the same as in other TV shows?

More closely 60

Less closely 7

About the same 31

Don’t know 2

  1. Does the recent success of the Patriots make you more inclined to root for them to win this year’s game, less inclined or does it not make any difference in whom you will root for?

More inclined 12

Less inclined 20

No difference 62

Don’t know 6

  1. Did you approve, disapprove or have no opinion about players protesting during the playing of the National Anthem throughout the season?

Approve 28

Disapprove 46

No opinion 25

Don’t know 1

  1. Do you approve, disapprove or have no opinion about players protesting during the playing of the National Anthem prior to the Super Bowl, the most watched game of the year?

Approve 27

Disapprove 44

No opinion 25

Don’t know 4

  1. Would you be more likely to buy a product advertised on the Super Bowl, less likely or does it make no difference?

More likely 6

Less likely 13

Makes no difference 78

Don’t know 2

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

Very closely 16

Closely 26

Not closely 24

Not at all 33

Don’t know 2

  1. Wrestling mogul Vince McMahon announced last week that he was starting a new professional football league, the XFL in January of 2020. Will you be interested in following another pro football league?

Yes 27

No 61

Don’t know/No opinion 13

 

 

 

 

 

Sports Poll Featured in USA Today, NY Daily News, Yahoo Finance, ESPN and SportsBusiness Daily

The Seton Hall Sports Poll, sponsored by the Sharkey Institute and the Stillman School of Business, was featured in USA Today, the NY Daily News, Yahoo Finance and Yahoo Sports along with ESPN, SportsBusiness Daily and a number of other media outlets.

The most recent poll asked people what they thought about President Trump’s comments regarding the NFL national anthem controversy (71% would like him to stop commenting, only 23% said he should continue to do so); what they thought about the efficacy of a plan to deal with the anthem controversy put forward by a number of NFL owners that would keep players in the locker room while the anthem played (63% said “not effective,” 27% said “yes”); and whether or not they planned on buying and NFL merchandise over the holiday season (20% said yes, and a whopping 74% said no) and whether the anthem controversy had anything to do with their decision not to buy (a third said it did).
In addition to these questions, the Poll gauged the public sentiment on the current selection format for the college football playoffs, the prospect of Roger Goodell’s contract extension, the impact of Jerry Jones, Women in sports broadcasting, and a number of other questions. You can see the release here.

Media Highlights

Sports Poll Featured in New York Times, Washington Post, Investor’s Business Daily, Forbes and More

The Seton Hall Sports Poll was featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, Investor’s Business Daily, Forbes and literally hundreds of other media outlets across the United States.Seton Hall Sports Poll

In Forbes, Sports Poll results were part of an article entitled, “NFL Anthem Protests Continue to Smack League’s Broadcasters and Sponsors.” The article was written by Mike Oznanian who, in addition to being Associate Managing Editor at Forbes, is co-host and Managing Editor of Forbes SportsMoney, a television show which appears on the YES Network and Fox Sports 1.

In Investor’s Business Daily, the Sports Poll’s Director, Rick Gentile, was cited regarding the decrease in NFL viewership and the Sports Poll’s findings that roughly 30% of those who are watching less professional football cite the anthem protests as the reason. “Companies Beware: Partisan Politics And Branding Don’t Mix.”

Sports Poll findings also appeared in The New York Times and at least a hundred other media outlets via a Reuters news agency article. The article, “Owner of NFL’s Texans sorry for ‘inmates’ comment on protesting players,” used the Poll’s most recent findings on the NFL’s anthem protests within the context of remarks made about the protests by an NFL team owner. The article, syndicated and appearing in media outlets such as Yahoo, ESPN and a number of local and regional radio and TV stations such as AM 1660 The Fan, Duke FM of Fargo and 96.3 Jack FM of Nashville, notes:

A Seton Hall University poll on Friday found 47 percent of respondents believe the NFL should order players to stand during the anthem, while 42 percent do not.

Most people, by a 55-to-37 percent margin, also said it was inappropriate for Trump to launch a recent petition on the Republican National Committee website saying the players should stand.

You can see the article, “Owner of NFL’s Texans sorry for ‘inmates’ comment on protesting players,” as it appeared in The New York Times.

In the Washington Post, the Sports Poll and its director were featured in an article entitled “Midway through NFL season, football ratings are down.”

Regarding ratings, the article notes:

Professor Rick Gentile“It’s certainly not cause for panic,” said Rick Gentile, a former CBS Sports executive and now a Seton Hall University professor, “but they like to keep going up.”

The article also notes that,

Asked about the impact of the protests, NFL spokesman Alex Riethmiller said the league believes the ratings drop is part of a broader trend in television consumption instead of a single issue or controversy.

Yet Gentile, who runs a nationwide poll on sports issues for Seton Hall, said his surveys show differently.

“I was in denial for a while,” he said, “but every time we asked the question, ‘why do you watch fewer games?’ it came back the same way — the protests.”

In the last week of September, Seton Hall’s poll of 850 people found that half were watching the same number of football games they watched in the past. Twenty-nine percent said they watched fewer games, 5 percent said they watched more and the remainder didn’t know. Of the people who watched fewer games, 47 percent said it was because of the protests, by far the most frequent reason cited.

In addition to the Washington Post, the article, a syndicated Top News story from the Associated Press, appeared on ABC News, Fox Business, Fox Sports, Yahoo Sports, the Miami Herald and hundreds of others including the Honolulu Star Advertiser, Indiana’s Journal Gazette, The Tribune of San Luis Obispo, The Connecticut Post, Minnesota’s Star Tribune, The Reading Eagle and far too many more to list.

You can see the article, “Midway through NFL season, football ratings are down,” as it appeared in the Washington Post.

You can see here the most recent sports poll, which included questions that gauged the public pulse on safety issues in youth football, replacing baseball umpires with computers and the abundance of home runs in Major League Baseball in addition to the questions on the NFL’s anthem protests.

Seton Hall Law Professor Charles Sullivan in ESPN Article on Legal Ramifications of Benching NFL Anthem Protesters

Seton Hall Law Professor and Associate Dean, Charles Sullivan, was featured in an ESPN article regarding the legal ramifications, if any, for NFL teams that bench players for participating in protests during the national anthem before games.

Jerry Jones, the owner of the Dallas Cowboys, has indicated that he would “bench” players that do not stand for the national anthem.

Sullivan, a noted expert in employment law who has published three of the leading legal casebooks on the subject, appeared in an article entitled, “Is it legal for Jerry Jones to bench players who do not stand?”

Debate surrounding the protests has been heated and, according to our most recent Sports Poll, has resulted in a decline in NFL viewership.

As this graphic from Fox News shows, of those who are watching fewer games, more than half attribute the decrease to the anthem protests (47% in disapproval, 6% as a show of solidarity with the players).

And the number who said they are watching less NFL games is substantial. The New York Post, citing our poll headlined it succinctly: “30 Percent are Watching Less — and Most Blame Anthem.”

Although football is a game, the NFL is a multi-billion dollar business, the players employees and the owners employers.

Given that the NFL relies heavily upon its TV contracts and those contracts are based upon the advertising revenue that mass viewership brings, it is not surprising that a decline in viewership based primarily upon one issue has that issue becoming a paramount concern for NFL owners.

As the ESPN article notes, beyond the presidential twitterstorm, social media campaigns and various boycotts both for and against the anthem protests:

According to a half-dozen experts we contacted, workplace employment law may have the last word. While the experts are divided on who would win such a legal battle, our sample ruled narrowly in favor of the owners.

Charles Sullivan, professor of law, Seton Hall University: “Where I think the players have a problem is there’s not really an adverse employment action if they are simply benched. They are still being paid, and I don’t think they necessarily have the right to play in games.”
Advantage: Owners

You can read the full article here, “Is it legal for Jerry Jones to bench players who do not stand?

You can read more about the most recent Sports Poll and its media coverage here: http://www.shu.edu/business/news/seton-hall-sports-poll-featured-in-media-nationwide.cfm