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South Polls Cowboys and Indi—er, Braves BY JOHN SHELTON REED Neither the Dallas Cowboys nor the Atlanta Braves are exactly "America's Team," but both seem to have won the hearts of southerners. When the Fall 1 995 Southern Focus Poll asked 801 residents of soudiern states and 481 other Americans "What is your favorite National Football League Team?" and "What is your favorite major league baseball team?" the Cowboys and the Braves were the favorites of 41 percent and 43 percent, respectively, of the 68 percent of southern respondents who had named a favorite team. The Cowboys enlisted the loyalty of only 8 percent ofnonsouthern football fans, while the Braves had a nonsouthern following of less than 4 percent. The distant runners-up for the affections of southern fans were the Miami Dolphins (10 percent) and the Texas Rangers (7 percent). AU other southern teams had even less support in the South than at least one nonsouthern team. The South is not unique in having teams with regional appeal (71 percent of New England's baseball fans root for the Red Sox), but it seems to be the only large region with several teams in each sport where a single team has established more than a local following. Support for the regional champions is more common among natives than among migrants to the South. Sex, age, education, and income also affect support for the Cowboys and the Braves, in part because women, older people, and tiiose with low incomes and/or little education are less likely to have favorites in the first place. The Southern Focus Poll is a semiannual telephone survey conducted by the Institute for Research in Social Science at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill 27 5 99-3 3 5 5. Data can be obtained for further analysis from the Institute . 123 "What is your favorite National Football League team?" SouthNon-South Dallas Cowboys27.5% Miami Dolphins6.7 San Francisco 49ers6.4 Washington Redskins6.2 Adanta Falcons2.8 New Orleans Saints2.5 Carolina Panthers2.0 Pittsburgh Steelers1.5 New York Giants1 .3 JacksonvilleJaguars1 .2 Chicago Bears1 .2 5.3% 2.8 9.1 1.8 0.2 2.5 5.5 0.3 5.9 (all others—including Tampa Bay and Houston—less than 1 percent in South and less than 4 percent elsewhere) "Don't have favorite" 32.1 31.7 "What is your favorite major league baseball team?" SouthNon-South Adanta Braves27.0% Texas Rangers4.3 Cincinnati Reds3.9 New York Yankees3.8 Houston Astros3.3 Boston Red Sox3.2 St. Louis Cardinals2.0 Chicago Cubs2.0 Florida Marlins1.9 Cleveland Indians1.9 Los Angeles Dodgers1 .9 Baltimore Orioles1.5 New York Mets1.1 (All others less than 1 percent in South, less than 4 percent elsewhere) 2.2% 2.6 7.1 5.4 2.0 4.3 2.6 4.0 2.9 2.6 "Don't have favorite' 37.4 35.9 I24 JOHN SHELTON REED AMONG SOUTHERN RESPONDENTS Favorite football team Favorite baseball team Cowboys None Braves None Residence Deep South17344929 Peripheral South32311941 Lived in South 10 years or less19291131 More than 10 years18302239 "All my life"32323238 Considers self A southerner29313337 Does not22341236 Rural/Urban Nonmetro residence29393241 Metropolitan27282435 Race White27322836 Black30332542 Sex Male30243329 Female26382343 Age 18-2431282329 25-4431243131 45-6425372245 65 and older19522750 Education 11th grade or less32462147 High school graduate 27332736 Some college31232834 College graduate22323036 Income less than $20,00028362340 $20,000-39,99928303038 $40,000-59,99930262535 $60,000 or more24223329 South Polls 1 25 FavoriteFavorite football teambaseball team Cowboys None Braves None Politicai identification Republican31243035 Democrat25412837 Independent26292434 I26 JOHN SHELTON REED ...


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