A recent compilation of metrics related to fan dedication and overall support of Canadian Football League franchises found the Saskatchewan Roughriders have the most passionate fan base, and by a fairly large margin at that.
The data was compiled by the online gambling site Casino En Linge (CEL) and covered a range of factors including financial commitment, physical commitment and social media engagement for each of the CFL’s nine teams.
CEL looked at a wide range of factors in each category and assigned a final score, with a higher total representing a better result.
The Roughriders came in with an average of 7.13 to lead the league by nearly two full points — with financial commitment almost a full point better than second-place finisher Toronto (7.60 to 6.77), finishing sixth in physical commitment just behind Winnipeg (6.29 to 5.83) and overwhelmingly running away with social media presence over second-place finisher Edmonton (7.56 to 4.97).
Financial commitment looked at four factors, including the average cost of a season ticket ($646.65 for the Roughriders), cost of parking ($25), average price of food ($9.67) and the cost of a jersey ($161.42). While the season ticket price was middle of the road — Ottawa came in at $1,326 to lead all teams — parking and food were among the highest totals in the league, and only Hamilton’s merchandise was more expensive ($167.18 for a jersey).
That left supporting the Riders a pricey proposition, but given the regular sellouts at Mosaic Stadium, a sign that fans are more than willing to pay the extra cost to cheer on the green and white.
Physical commitment looked solely at weather conditions and how likely fans were to face freezing cold, rain and snow. Not surprisingly, Regina didn’t fare so well in the data: the average temperature during the season is a league-worst 4.6 C, while the city sees an average of 26.6 millimetres of rain between August and December and 41 centimetres of snow in that same span. The former is the lowest in the league; the latter comes in at fifth overall.
The final category took into account social media engagement on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and the final results weren’t close. The Roughriders have nearly 100,000 more Facebook likes (272,103) compared to second-place Montreal (199,328), over 5,000 more Instagram followers (87,392) compared to second-place Toronto (82,056) and nearly 60,000 more Twitter followers (221,861) compared to second-place Hamilton (166,038).
In fact, the only social media metric CEL found that didn’t favour the Roughriders was overall engagement, with Edmonton taking top spot there.
The Roughriders kick off the 2021 CFL season on Friday when they host the B.C. Lions at Mosaic Stadium. The contest is sold out, but the game will be broadcast on TSN. The pre-game show is at 7 p.m. and kick-off at 7:30 p.m.
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