Facebook creates college football fandom map based on user likes of Top 25 teams

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Just in time for the college football season, the people at Facebook have compiled user data to create a map of the United States depicting Facebook users’ college football allegiances.

The social media website went county by county, painting each one a color based on which Top 25 college football program had received the most “likes.”

Reuben Fischer-Baum of Deadspin spotted the map, which shows some interesting (and some completely unsurprising) trends concerning college football fans and their use of social media.

college football fandom

Here are a few things you can glean from Facebook’s “fandom” map. Warning: Even if you aren’t colorblind, you might need some help with this one.

1. Almost the entire West Coast loves the University of Oregon. They want to move into an apartment with Oregon, share toothbrushes and use the school’s new $68 million football facility/space station.

2. The Northeast loves Florida in a kind of reverse Snowbird Effect.

3. Michigan enclaves are sprinkled throughout the nation from Colorado to Vermont, because you can’t go anywhere without meeting a Michigan fan.

4. No. 1 Alabama dominates its state and the majority of Tennessee, but the Tide are concentrated locally.

5. Oklahoma is an ugly maroon with an Oklahoma State freckle in the middle.

6. Texas A&M is relegated to Brazos County and some strange place in Arkansas.

7. Outside of Indiana, blotches of Notre Dame’s Catholic roots remain in the Northeast, but not as prevalently as one might expect.

8. Texas Longhorns fans own the middle third of the nation, from north to south.

9. Large swathes of Montana do not have Internet, and the parts that do vary in fanship from county to county.

10. Oregon State is nowhere to be found.

It’s important to remember that all of this is based on Facebook likes, which don’t necessarily define a program’s fanbase. It should also be noted that some of these counties have very low population density. I’m convinced there’s a town somewhere in Wyoming with a backhoe for a mayor.

Despite these restraints, this new map provides some interesting insights into modern fanship—and if you disagree with its findings, better start clicking the “like” button.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.