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Football Is The Clear Favorite For Sports Fans

Baseball may be called America’s pastime, but the United States is clearly a football nation.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey of sports fans finds that 53% say football is their favorite sport to follow. Baseball comes in a distant second with 16% support, while basketball is the favorite of 11%. Six percent (6%) of Americans prefer hockey, with no other sport including soccer, auto racing, golf and tennis reaching five percent (5%). (To see survey question wording, click here.)

Football is the top sport across the demographic board, with even more women (57%) than men (50%) saying it’s their favorite to follow.

Regardless of their preference, Americans tend to feel the highs more than the lows when it comes to sports. Fifty-eight percent (58%) of sports fans say they feel Very Happy when their favorite team wins a big game, while just six percent (6%) say they feel Very Depressed when their team loses a big one. In fact, 64% claim they don’t feel very depressed at all when their team loses a crucial matchup.

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This survey of 1,011 Sports Fans was conducted on November 27, 2012 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

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