This four-day weekend isn’t about turkey; it’s about football. From Thursday until Sunday we can turn on the television and watch the pro or college teams fight for bragging rights. This weekend USC and UCLA will play for Los Angeles domination. If you’re a fan of either team, the game can be nerve-racking. And according to researchers from Ohio State University, this fear and near-despair may be what makes these rivalry games enjoyable.
Specifically, if your team is the one who wins but you thought at one point that they were sure to lose, the game was more thrilling and suspenseful than a fan of the losing team. “We found that negative emotions play a key role in how much we enjoy sports,” said Silvia Knobloch-Westerwick, co-author of the study and associate professor of communication at Ohio State University, in a prepared statement.
As for me, I’ll probably start watching the battle of LA in the fourth quarter. UCLA is my hometown team, but I don’t find enjoyment watching them. I find frustration. Sigh.