Here are the results of a recent study conducted by Samford University ranking which SEC football teams have the most engaged fan base:

TeamEngagement Level
1. LSU21
2. Ole Miss29
3. South Carolina32
4. Texas A&M35
5. Missouri45
6. Mississippi State48
7. Auburn52
8. Kentucky56
9. Tennessee60
10. Alabama61
11. Florida62
12. Georgia74
13. Arkansas79
14. Vanderbilt81

TheĀ study by Samford University’s Sports Marketing department, led by Dr. Darin White, found which SEC fans have high levels of fan engagement in their favorite teams.

More than 2,500 SEC football fans filled out a survey, both online and at games, with the results compiled into the SEC Football Fan Engagement Index.

What is fan engagement? The study conducted by Samford defines it as “the overall participation, utilization of connections and interactions to create the best atmosphere and experience for fans with their respective teams.”

In a day and age in which sports — both the collegiate and professional levels — have become billion dollar businesses, fan engagement is a measurement haunting marketers.

How do fans stay engaged in an exceedingly digital society, and in a society in which the television product of sports is so good, many fans are electing to stay home? How does fan engagement affect behavior and correlate to in-game attendance?

With the rise of corporate sponsorships, fantasy sports, social media and more, sports marketing has blossomed into a $500 million enterprise. Keeping fan engagement levels up, however, is harder than ever.

The Southeastern Conference, though, is the nation’s premier conference in college football and as a result, is attractive to marketers and corporate sponsors.

The results of the Index — compiled during the 2014 college football season — are based on the concept that highly-engaged sports fans behave differently than regular sports fans.

Nearly all SEC football fans demonstrate a low-level engagement with their favorite team (i.e. attending games, watching games on TV, buying team gear and reading about the team).

The SEC Football Fan Engagement Index assesses fandom at a deeper level, however. The index represents a deeper commitment than loyalty. Loyalty represents the mere attitude fans take toward their favorite teams. The results of the Index — also important to teams and marketers — are the physiological responses related to fandom.

Below is a more broken-down table of the results of the survey, courtesy of Samford University’s Department of Sports Marketing.

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