Michael Sam’s announcement has engendered several reports in the media regarding how accepting NFL management and players would be to an openly gay player. We were interested in looking at how the fans in NFL cities feel about Michael Sam. In order to do this, we collected all tweets mentioning “Michael Sam” in the 31 NFL markets for the past 2 days (2/9 morning – 2/11 morning). The tweets were sorted by market, and analyzed for positive, negative, or neutral sentiment. Looking at the ratio of positive, negative, and neutral tweets allowed us to compare Twitter sentiment for Michael Sam across NFL Markets.
We present the top ten and the bottom seven markets in the NFL. It is interesting to note that a lot of the tweets in St. Louis and Kansas City that mention Michael Sam also reference the University of Missouri. The most negative Twitter sentiment toward Michael Sam seems to be in the Nashville market.
Michael Lewis and Manish Tripathi, Emory University 2014