Will NFL Protest Effect Super Bowl LII Ratings? Seaton Hall Polltaker On Zennie62 Live
Two days ago, I received the press release below – the author of the NFL Super Bowl poll is Rick Gentile, and is my guest on this segment of Zennie62 Live.
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.
The national anthem (stand or knell) 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.
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 http://ift.tt/2EcUVAE