Apparently, according to Los Alamos researchers Soccer ‘the most exciting sport’ if you define exciting as how easy it is to predict the winner of any given match up.
The results showed that the “upset frequency” was highest for soccer followed by baseball, hockey, basketball and finally American football.
Now, its a bit of a stretch to say that the frequency of upsets is the biggest or best indicator of excitement. There are a number of other factors, including history of a sport, media hype, rituals and gatherign that center around a sport, and family history/tradition (ie watching baseball w/dear old dad) that can make a sport more exciting for one person or another.
There’s also a not-insignificant cadre of sports fans who are going to be excited more by supporting a proven winner, such as the NY Yankees or Manchester United, than by upsets and unpredictable results.
Hat tip: Soccerphile World Cup Blog.