89% SAY SEXUAL PREFERENCE
SHOULD NOT BE CONSIDERED IN OFFERING A CONTRACT TO A PLAYER
A resounding 89% of Americans have said that a player’s sexual
preference should not be considered a reason to refuse to offer the
player a contract, according to a poll conducted this week by the Seton
Hall Sports Poll.
Only 6% felt sexual preference should be considered, with 5% undecided (or refusing to answer).
The poll of 780 respondents (with a 3.6% margin of error), was based
on random phone calls to landlines and cellphones across the U.S.
between February 24-26.
76% felt that the Brooklyn Nets would not regret signing Jason
Collins, who this week became the first openly gay player in America’s
four major team sports. 10% felt they would regret it, with 14% saying
they did not know, or refusing the answer. Blacks are three times more
likely than whites to say that the Nets would regret it.
“This is a here-and-now issue for sports,” noted Rick Gentile,
director of the poll, which is sponsored by The Sharkey Institute. “And
leagues should note that for the fans, it has already been decided - it
is a non-issue.”
On the question of whether Michael Sam’s sexual preference will cause
him to be drafted in a lower round than had he not reveled himself as
gay, respondents were equally divided - 38% saying yes, it will cause
him to be drafted lower, and 40% saying it would not.
OLYMPIC COVERAGE GETS HIGH GRADES;
DECISION TO HOLD GAMES IN RUSSIA IS MET WITH APPROVAL
72% rated NBC’s coverage as good or excellent versus only 25% saying
fair or poor. Among women, figure skating was the sport most enjoyed
with 52% (alpine skiing and snowboarding were next with 11%), while
among men, hockey rated highest with 27%, followed by alpine skiing and
snowboarding at 17%). Overall, the sport most enjoyed was figure
skating at 31%, with hockey at 16%, alpine skiing and snowboarding both
One in five Americans - 19% - said that if an advertiser were an
official US Olympic team sponsor, it would influence their decision to
purchase the product.
“That is really a high number for the advertising community to bask in,” noted Gentile.
59% of respondents felt that judging in the Olympics is influenced by
international politics, and the number got higher by age group.
On the question of holding the Olympics in Russia, 63% said that
hosting an Olympics improves the image of the host county, with 34%
saying it has increased their interest in Russia (64% saying it remained
the same), and 48% percent saying it was a good decision to hold the
Olympics in Russia vs. 26% saying it was a bad decision. A pre-Olympic
poll by the Pew Research Center for the People & The Press conducted
in January showed almost the reverse with 44% saying it was a bad
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