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Seton Hall Sports Poll on Honesty of the NFL on the Subject of Head Injuries  

NFLBy Over 2 to 1, USA Believes NFL Has Not Been Honest in Recent Years on the Subject of Head Injuries

29% View League Less Favorably

Both Men and Women Agree - Women's Soccer Team Pay Should Equal Men's

By more than a 2 to 1 margin, the nation believes the National Football League has not been honest in recent years on the subject of head injuries, according to a Seton Hall Sports Poll. While 26% believe the league has been honest, 58% feels it has not been. 16% said they did not know.

The poll was conducted among 730 adults on both landlines and cellphones across the nation (there is a margin of error of +/- 3.7%).

29% - nearly a third - now view the NFL less favorably, with 56% saying the matter has had no effect on their feelings about the league. 7% see it more favorably.

"Even though an overwhelming margin feels the league has been less than honest on this issue, the NFL continues to enjoy great popularity, with a majority of the respondents still saying it has no effect on how they view the league," said Rick Gentile, director of the Poll, which is sponsored by The Sharkey Institute. "But the 29% who view the league less favorably is a substantial number."

51% feel the NFL is not doing enough to protect its players from concussions and head injuries (vs. 35% who feel they do), and 54% feel they do not do enough for retired players who suffer from brain injuries (vs. 22% who feel they do). These "not doing enough" numbers are up 10% for both active and retired players since the question was last asked, in October 2014, by the Poll.

49% feel the sudden retirement of the New York Jets lineman D'Brickashaw Ferguson will raise awareness of the subject of head injuries. And a whopping 80% feel that greater precautions should be taken by high school and college programs to limit concussions.

When asked "If your son wanted to play football….." only 21% said they would enthusiastically encourage it, 56% said they would cautiously allow it, and 18% said they would absolutely forbid it. Among men, it was 30% (encourage), 49% (allow), 18% (forbid), while among women, it was 13% (encourage), 62% (allow), and 19% (forbid).

Men Support Equal Pay for Women's Soccer Players Almost As Much As Women Do, and Both Overwhelmingly So

While a national dialogue on the matter of equal pay for women plays out on the Presidential campaign trail, on the matter of members of the US Women's Soccer team (World Cup champions), receiving comparable pay to members of the Men's team, 73% indicated they should receive the same pay, with an additional 11% saying they should receive more. Only 8% said they should receive less, as they currently do. Men strongly support equal pay, with 69% of them approving, while 76% of women concur.

NBA Wants to Raise Minimum Age from 19 to 20- Majority Agrees

With the NBA Commissioner saying he would like to raise the minimum age to draft players from 19 to 20, this effectively meant college players would have to complete two years, not one. 55% of respondents agreed with the two years of college plan, with only 13% supporting one year. The Poll asked this question in March, 2014, at which time 54% supported two years, and 19% supported one and done.

Salaries for College Athletes? 24% Say They Would Lose Interest

The Poll asked if interest would change if college athletes were compensated, and 64% said their interest would remain the same, with 24% saying it would decrease and only 11% saying it would increase.

College Hockey Growth? 44% Express Interest

Asked if they would be be interested in seeing a further growth of hockey on the college level, 44% indicated they would be either somewhat interested (28%) or very interested (16%), with 51% saying they were not interested in that.

Endorsements by PGA Golfers an Influence?

Asked how likely they would be to buy a product endorsed by some leading PGA professionals, Phil Mickelson's 24% "likely" rated highest among the five players listed, with Tiger Woods receiving 21%, Rory McIlroy 19%, Jordan Spieth 17% and Master's winner Danny Willett 9%. The "not likely" tally came in at 62% for Woods, 61% for Willett, 56% for Spieth, 55% for Mickelson and 54% for McIlroy. Mickelson also scored highest among those identifying themselves as fans or players of golf.

About the Seton Hall Sports Poll

The poll, known as the Seton Hall Sports Poll Conducted by The Sharkey Institute, debuted in February 2006 with a poll on that year's Olympic Games.

It is the first and only university-based, ongoing polling service exclusively devoted to the multi-billion dollar sports industry, and its findings serve as a barometer of public opinion on the many important issues confronting sport today.

With the help of other experts from the Stillman School of Business, Center for Sport Management, and a host of outside consultants from the polling community, the Seton Hall Sport Poll has achieved a tremendous amount of national exposure. ESPN, Bloomberg, the Associated Press, CNBC, PBS, and a plethora of newspapers, radio stations, and business journals have all featured poll results.

Categories: Athletics , Business

For more information, please contact:

  • Richard Gentile
  • (973) 313-6201
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