A poll came out on August 24, 2016 conducted by Public Policy Polling (all of the results can be found here). A wide range of topics were polled, but the most relevant to sports this week with the Holy War looming tomorrow is the most popular team in the state of Utah. It is the Utah Utes over the BYU Cougars. The Utah State Aggies came in third, then Weber State, Southern Utah, and Utah Valley. Here is an excerpt from Public Policy Polling:
Utah wins out over BYU when it comes to college sports loyalties in the state, 32/26. Utah State is third at 16%, followed by Weber State at 4%, Southern Utah at 3%, and Utah Valley at 2%. There are massive political and religious divides on college loyalty. Among Democrats Utah leads with 54% to 15% for Utah State, with BYU only tied for third with Utah Valley at 5%. But among Republicans BYU wins out with 40% to 21% for Utah, and 15% for Utah State. The political divide mirrors the religious split- among Mormons, BYU leads with 40% to 20% for Utah and 17% for Utah State. But among non-Mormons Utah romps with 55% to 14% for Utah State with BYU registering at only 1%.
You can read the BYU perspective on this news here from our colleagues over at Vanquish the Foe. With the success Utah has had on the football field the last two year, ranking in every weekly College Football Playoff Poll and the publicity Utah receives as a member of the Pac-12, it does not shock me Utah is the most popular team. College Gameday, ESPN’s premier college football preview show, broadcast from campus last season for Utah’s homecoming game against Cal. Utah also holds a five game winning streak against BYU.