| March 22, 2018

Opinion: America’s sport

October 16, 2017

Football has been the most popular sport in America since the birth of the NFL decades ago, but America’s favorite sport is being dethroned and taking its place is the NBA.

I can be the first one to tell you how the NFL is the best sport in the world, but I can also tell you how the national outlook on the game is slowly dragging away the fanbase. The sad fact is less people are tuning in on Sundays, Mondays and Thursdays to watch football.

Viewership for CBS football on Sundays is down ten percent, according to Sports Illustrated. Many say it is largely due to the impacts of Hurricane Irma. While this may be true, the falling ratings of the NFL may be because of the latest protests on social movements as well as quality of play. Or maybe it’s because of the recent rise of the NBA.

This recent NBA offseason proves why it is becoming the most popular sport in America. While the NFL was beginning to kick off the new season, the biggest sports news was dominated by the number of blockbuster trades happening around the NBA. Teams are becoming stronger, more competitive and this helps lead to the anticipation of the new season.

NBA players are more famous compared to NFL players as well, especially on Twitter. As of now, five current and former NBA athletes are in the top 20 of the top athletes on Twitter, with not even a single NFL player, according to Fan Page List. This may have to do with how the younger generation of America today is looking away from football and instead turning to  basketball.

With the scrutiny and stigma that football causes too many concussions and head trauma on players, more parents are shying away from the game and looking for other sports for children to participate in, like basketball. For many children, it’s easier to pick up a basketball and play, then having to find a field to play a game of football. To many, basketball is the more accessible sport.

Both sports dominate the current market we live in. Many crave the dramatic finishes, and superhero like plays that both the NBA and NFL have to offer. I will always love what both games bring to the table, but with the scrutiny the NFL has faced the past few seasons, it is hard to deny that the NBA is definitely giving the NFL a run for its money. America may have a new favorite sport, and that is basketball.

Chris Deremer can be reached at arg-sports@uidaho.edu

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