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NYT Map Shows How Much Football Matters in Centre County

The New York Times recently created an interactive map that allows you to see “The Places in America Where College Football Means the Most,” and, as one might expect, it matters quite a lot here in Happy Valley.

To create the map, the New York Times used Facebook to compile information of which people ‘like’ a college football program, and where that person is living. The Facebook profiles are used to represent the county or state as a whole.

Here’s the map:


Pennsylvania Breakdown:

In Pennsylvania, the county that statistically ‘cares’ the most about college is, unsurprisingly, Centre County. Centre County holds an impressive 29 percent of Facebook users as proclaimed college football fans. Note, this doesn’t exactly mean they care about Penn State, just a college football program in general. The second highest college football fan base in the state is neighboring Mifflin County, where 27 percent of Facebook users are college football fans. As a whole, 9 percent of the Pennsylvanian population identifies as college football fans.

Other Figures:

  • Alabama has the highest amount of college football fans. This could be due to recent success of the two biggest schools in the state: Alabama has won the national championship three times in the last five years, and Auburn has finished twice in the top two spots, including a national championship in 2010. Thirty-four percent of Facebook-using Alabamians identify as college football fans (this is 5 percentage points above the next highest state).
  • The states with the lowest amount of college football fans are Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, Rhode Island, New York, and New Jersey. In those seven states, less than 4 percent of Facebook users “like” college football.
  • Nebraska, Iowa, and Ohio are the only states with schools from the Big Ten to make it into the top 10 football likes in the county.
  • The map unveiled that college football “attracts the most fans in rural areas without professional sports teams.”


The map acts as a complement to its map of college football fandoms, which you can check out here.

About the Author

Brandilyn Heckman

is a junior majoring in Secondary Education (English). Though she commutes to class from her home in Penns Valley, she refuses to be called a 'townie.' Along with Onward State, she currently interns with the Centre Daily Times. In her spare time, she is unafraid to show her love for Penn State, Landon Donovan, and Captain America. You can follow her on twitter at @Brandilynh or contact her via email with [email protected]


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