Opinion: Football is America’s sport

Travis Willmann, Assistant Editor

Graphic courtesy of Travis Willmann

Graphic courtesy of Travis Willmann

The views and opinions expressed in this editorial are solely those of the original author(s) These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of The Vision website or North Greenville University.

From the beginning of time, man has been captivated by sport. Evidence shows that the first sport was wrestling, dating back over 15,000 years ago, according to catawiki.com. The love for sports has not changed since and Americans love their sports more than just about anybody in the world. Even though Lacrosse was the first true American sport, baseball has been known as “America’s Sport” since 1948, when a poll by Gallup proved that baseball was the most liked sport in the country. However, baseball is no longer “America’s Sport."

According to news.gallup.com, baseball lost its top spot as America’s most watched sport in 1978, when football stole the title. Today, 37 percent of adults say that their favorite sport is football and baseball is down to a low of only 9 percent. 

If we go by the numbers, it is no secret that America has an obsession with football, but why? 

Football is fast. Football is rough. Football is fun to watch. In today’s world, Americans are looking for a game that is fun to watch, fast and rough. Football provides all of that. It combines the human want for violence with our love for sports teams, home cities and our alma maters. 

When baseball was “America’s Sport” life was different in America. Life moved more slowly, and we were not always looking for the next thing to keep us occupied. Now, Americans are living a fast-paced lifestyle and need games that reflect on their lifestyle. 

However, everything is not glorious for football. In the recent years with domestic violence becoming an issue in the NFL and players protesting the National Anthem, Americans have dropped football as their favorite sport. NFL viewership is down 10 percent from its all-time high of 67 percent. However, other sports and college football have remained unaffected in the past five years, according to news.gallup.com. 

While football has solidified itself as “America’s Sport”, baseball will always hold a special place in the hearts of all Americans as America's first popular sport. However, changes to the pace of play and length of the season need to happen if it hopes to ever become “America’s Sport” again.