Rivalries are part of what makes sports great. In fact, I know that sometimes I feel like I cheer against as many teams as I do for teams. And the full-blown rivalries well I take them VERY seriously. College sports is where I’m the biggest fan and I don’t own anything in the color of my rival team, will route against them in any scenario, I consider that a deal-breaker when dating, and even went as far as to wash my hands when I got the mail in high school and they had sent me an info packet. (Yes I was already a fan and knew where I wanted to go from day one). But what are the biggest rivalries in professional sports? Ahead of the biggest football game of the year, TickPick set out to find out!
TickPick polled 1,780 sports fans and pulled data from sports-reference.com to determine the biggest rivalries in the NFL as well as other professional sports, over the last 10 years.
Some findings include:
- The top NFL rivalry in the last 10 years is currently between the Green Bay Packers and the Chicago Bears
- More than half of fans say they always or often root for their rival to fail, even when they aren’t playing their favorite team
- Fans say the top negative aspects of rivalries are: more social media arguments (65%), more fights at games (51%), and fan brawls in and outside stadiums (50%)
- Despite the negativities, 83% of fans feel rivalries make sports more exciting, 7 in 10 believe rivalries push teams and athletes to greater heights, and 59% appreciate the fact that rivalries give fans an outlet to express frustrations