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Play Ball! What’s America’s favorite Sport?

The Pro-Bowl is this weekend and the Super Bowl is next weekend…so is football or baseball America’s favorite sport?  We call baseball the National Pastime but is it really. Most die-hard fans will always say both.

Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

But if they are forced to choose, football wins. According to the annual Harris Poll 34% of those who follow at least one sport say professional football is their favorite spectator sport. Coming in a distant second is baseball, which is favored by 16%.  Since this question was first asked in 1985, professional football has gone up 10 points from 24% of sports fans saying it was their favorite sport then to 34% saying so now. Baseball has gone down 7 points, from 23% in 1985 to 16% today.

Our favorite sports and the percentage who like them the best:

  • Professional football: 34%
  • Professional baseball: 16%
  • College football: 11%
  • Auto racing: 8%
  • Men’s professional basketball: 7%
  • Hockey: 5%
  • Men’s college basketball: 3%
  • Men’s tennis: 2%
  • Swimming: 2%
  • Men’s golf: 2%
  • Men’s soccer: 2%

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