Thursday, November 28th, 2019 | 8 min read
Welcome to the American Thanksgiving week edition of Sprinklr’s Top-25 rankings of college football teams on modern channels. Week 13 provided a couple of upsets and helped crystallize the playoff picture a little more on the field, we’re here to provide you with the rankings and insights of what’s been said across the digital landscape. We analyzed hundreds of thousands of mentions across social media, news sites, blogs and forums using Sprinklr Modern Research to help us discover the most interesting trends. Much of the data we analyzed came from our partner Twitter – you can find out more about our partnership here.
1 – Ohio State University (↑ 1 spot) – 88,904 mentions
2 – Louisiana State University (↓ 1 spot) – 52,184 mentions
3 – University of Alabama (- 0 spots) – 51,708 mentions
4 – University of Oklahoma (↑ 1 spot) – 34,529 mentions
5 – Penn State University (↑ 7 spots) – 33,041 mentions
6 – University of Michigan (- 0 spots) – 28,402 mentions
7 – University of Oregon (↑ 14 spots) – 27,496 mentions
8 – Clemson University (↓ 1 spot) – 26,852 mentions
9 – University of Utah (↑ 9 spots) – 21,522 mentions
10 – University of Minnesota (↓ 6 spots) – 17,629 mentions
11 – Baylor University (↓ 3 spots) – 17,549 mentions
12 – University of Texas (↓ 1 spot) – 16,284 mentions
13 – University of Georgia (↑ 4 spots) – 15,764 mentions
14 – University of Iowa (↑ 2 spots) – 14,622 mentions
15 – University of Florida (↓ 5 spots) – 14,608 mentions
16 – University of Notre Dame (↓ 1 spot) – 14,422 mentions
17 – University of Miami (not ranked) – 14,409 mentions
18 – Auburn University (↓ 9 spots) – 12,569 mentions
19 – University of Louisville (not ranked) – 12,213 mentions
20 – University of Tennessee (↓ 6 spots) – 12,161 mentions
21 – University of Wisconsin (↑ 1 spot) – 11,286 mentions
22 – University of Southern California (not ranked) – 11,285 mentions
23 – Iowa State University not ranked) – 10,018 mentions
24 – Michigan State University (↓ 4 spots) – 9,591 mentions
25 – Texas A&M University (not ranked) – 9,066 mentions
A resurgence of the PAC-12? Sentiment Provides Context
We discussed last week that the PAC-12 wasn’t being talked about a whole lot and that changed a bit this week with Oregon making their way to number seven on our rankings along with Utah and USC. However, it’s important to continue to point out that all mentions aren’t equal. While Oregon shot up 14 spots this week, they lost and essentially eliminated themselves from a playoff spot. Check out their sentiment over the past week.
The team took a huge spike in positive sentiment after the latest college football rankings came out and then saw negative sentiment beat out positive sentiment when the ended up losing to Arizona State. So while they were a part of a big storyline, they were on the wrong side of an upset. While this shows the PAC-12 is still able to draw national attention, including positives like USC’s quarterback’s big game, the conference needs to find a way to get their team’s in the news and on Twitter consistently.
Top video on Twitter this week
Horned frog, toad, or lizard?! We asked @SamNobleMuseum Ph.D researcher, Samuel Eliades to get to the bottom of this ahead of tomorrow's @OU_Football game versus @TCUFootball. Your move @TCU. #BeatTCU pic.twitter.com/9vMWmdOIij
— Univ. of Oklahoma (@UofOklahoma) November 22, 2019
This witty video ahead of Oklahoma’s game against the TCU “Horned Frogs” ended up being the most popular video on Twitter this week. Content that is light and has some humor to it has been performing extremely well throughout the year. When you think about it, there are over a hundred college football teams vying for the attention of football fans and even their own fans. With so much “copy-cat” content, fans are overloaded with information. In order to stick out to a broader audience, you need to have original, interesting content. You can’t just put the score of a game on the background and expect to get thousands of engagements.
Side note – lots of videos produced by teams such as this clip of Louisville becoming bowl eligible and this clip of LSU’s football coach, are still getting a ton of engagement almost a week after they were posted. The life of good video on Twitter is more than just a couple of days and in fact, can last for weeks.
Top news sources this week
We’ve mentioned almost all year how important it is to track mentions across all modern channels, not just social media. We’ve also spent a lot of time analyzing teams being picked up by news sources. However, we haven’t really shown who the top news sources are so this week we wanted to share some of the top news sources talking about college football. We have been tracking this all year and there really hasn’t been a ton of fluctuation in the top news outlets.
Sources like Yahoo Sports, CBS Sports, USA Today, etc. have all published hundreds of articles each week mentioning college football. For sports fans, this shouldn’t come as a surprise as all of these sources have been the “go-to” sites of sports news and information for a while.
None-the-less it’s interesting to see the number of articles that mention college teams each week. It would be interesting to compare content by the source across different sports (i.e. does USAToday mention college football of the NFL more in the fall?).
Top forums this week
Another interesting thing to look at is what forums are mentioning college football teams the most. The key insight with forums across all industries is that they are super specific. Just the other day I was researching automotive forums in Sprinklr and found dozens of forums just talking about Corvettes. So expect a similar thing happening in sports. The number one forum is one specifically for LSU fans. However, there are other larger forums that cover sports or just college sports that also made it relatively far up the list. Forums are an underutilized source of information to marketers. While it isn’t always best for brands and schools to comment in the forums, the quality of information is abundant.
Organizations can get raw, unfiltered thoughts and opinions on what they are doing right and wrong. This can be game-day related items – from parking, to the number of restrooms available, to ticketing pricing discussions, and even insights into how their content is landing with the audience.
Lastly, remember that one comment or one forum is just that one. The power of Sprinklr comes from combining the information from thousands of forums as well as other sources to generate these data-driven insights.
Stay tuned next week for our final regular season rankings and analysis. Once the season is concluded we’ll provide a final blog as well with key learning and insight from the entire season.
To learn more about Sprinklr’s partnership with Twitter, click here.
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