March 11, 2009 - Calhoun Should Keep Salary, Connecticut Fans Say 2-1, Quinnipiac University Poll Finds; Uconn Women No. 1 Among Nutmeg Fans

Word format

University of Connecticut men's basketball coach Jim Calhoun scores a slam dunk as Connecticut residents say 61 - 30 percent that he should keep all of his $1.6 million salary, rather than donate a portion to help with the state's economic problems, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

By a 68 - 12 percent margin, Connecticut residents have a favorable opinion of Calhoun, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University poll finds.

His salary is "about right," 48 percent say, while 43 percent say it is "too much."

A total of 69 percent of Connecticut residents heard or read "a lot" or "some" about Calhoun's response to a question about his salary asked at a recent press conference. Of that group, 51 percent approve of the way the coach answered the question, while 43 percent disapprove.

Those who know about the press conference say 80 - 16 percent that Calhoun should not be disciplined for the way he answered the question.

"Despite the negative headlines about Jim Calhoun's response to a political activist/blogger's question about his salary, Calhoun remains very popular," said Quinnipiac University Poll Director Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D. "He has a 68 percent favorability rating overall, and an 86 percent favorability rating among UCONN men's basketball fans. These are numbers many politicians would love to have."

"On the specific issue of how Calhoun handled the question, those aware of the controversy side with Calhoun, but not in overwhelming numbers. Do Connecticut residents think Calhoun is overpaid? Many do, but slightly more think he is paid about right."

"And by a strong 2-1 majority, Connecticut residents think that Calhoun shouldn't give back a portion of his salary," Dr. Schwartz added. "Although two state lawmakers thought Calhoun should be disciplined, residents aware of the controversy say no by an overwhelming 5-1 margin."

When asked if they are fans of UCONN's men's basketball team, 54 percent of Connecticut residents say yes.

But in an open-ended question, where respondents can give any answer, Connecticut residents were asked: What is your favorite Connecticut-based sports team. Results are:
  • 29 percent for UCONN's women's basketball team;
  • 22 percent for UCONN's men's basketball team;
  • 3 percent for UCONN football.
Men go with the men's team over the women's team 28 - 21 percent, while women back the women's team 36 - 16 percent.

"Connecticut is home to possibly the best men's and women's college basketball teams in the nation, but with a strong push from women residents, the UCONN women's team is number one in the hearts of Nutmeggers," Schwartz said.

From March 3 - 8, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,335 Connecticut adults with a margin of error of +/- 2.7 percentage points.

The Quinnipiac University Poll conducts public opinion surveys in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Florida, Ohio and the nation as a public service and for research.

26. (All adults) What is your favorite Connecticut-based sports team?
                     ALL ADULTS...................................
                                          AGE IN YRS..............
                     Tot    Men    Wom    18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Uconn Men's
 basketball          22%    28%    16%    26%    21%    24%    16%
Uconn Women's
 basketball          29     21     36     17     25     31     46
Uconn Football        3      4      2      5      2      2      2
Any other team       22     25     20     27     25     25     11
DK/NA                25     22     27     25     26     18     24
 
                                          MdlSex Toll,Wndm
                     Farfld Hrtfrd Lchfld NewHvn NewLon
 
Uconn Men's
 basketball          20%    24%    26%    19%    24%
Uconn Women's
 basketball          17     34     36     33     30
Uconn Football        2      3      4      2      5
Any other team       30     22     15     20     18
DK/NA                32     18     19     27     23
 
 
27. How interested are you in following college basketball - very interested, somewhat interested or not interested at all?
                     ALL ADULTS...................................
                                          AGE IN YRS..............
                     Tot    Men    Wom    18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Very interested      24%    29%    19%    18%    19%    26%    35%
Smwht interested     43     44     42     44     45     44     38
Not at all           33     26     38     38     35     29     26
DK/NA                 -      -      -      -      -      1      -
 
 
28. Do you consider yourself a fan of the UCONN men's basketball team or not?
                     ALL ADULTS...................................
                                          AGE IN YRS..............
                     Tot    Men    Wom    18-34  35-49  50-64  65+
 
Yes                  54%    62%    47%    55%    51%    56%    62%
No                   44     36     50     45     47     41     37
DK/NA                 2      2      2      -      3      3      -
 
                                          MdlSex Toll,Wndm
                     Farfld Hrtfrd Lchfld NewHvn NewLon
 
Yes                  43%    58%    57%    60%    54%
No                   55     40     40     37     45
DK/NA                 2      2      2      3      1
 
 
29. Is your opinion of UCONN men's basketball coach Jim Calhoun favorable, unfavorable, or haven't you heard enough about him?
                     ALL ADULTS..............................................
                                          AGE IN YRS..............    Men's
                     Tot    Men    Wom    18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Fan q28
 
Favorable            68%    72%    65%    68%    62%    72%    72%    86%
Unfavorable          12     13     12      8     16     14     11      6
Hvn't hrd enough     17     12     21     24     20     10     14      7
REFUSED               2      2      2      -      3      4      2      1
 
 
30. How much have you heard or read about Coach Calhoun's response to a question about his salary asked at a recent post-game press conference? A lot, some, not much or not at all?
                     ALL ADULTS..............................................
                                          AGE IN YRS..............    Men's
                     Tot    Men    Wom    18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Fan q28
 
A lot                47%    52%    43%    31%    45%    55%    57%    56%
Some                 22     20     23     22     22     23     18     19
Not much             10      9     11     16      8      9     11     10
Not at all           20     18     21     31     24     12     12     14
DK/NA                 1      1      1      -      -      -      2      1
 
 
31. (If heard a lot or some q30) Do you approve or disapprove of the way Coach Calhoun responded to this question about his salary?
                     ALL ADULTS..............................................
                     HEARD OR READ "A LOT" OR "SOME" Q30.....................
                                          AGE IN YRS..............    Men's
                     Tot    Men    Wom    18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Fan q28
 
Approve              51%    53%    48%    62%    49%    45%    49%    56%
Disapprove           43     42     44     35     42     47     45     38
DK/NA                 7      5      8      3      9      8      6      6
 
 
32. (If heard a lot or Some q30) Do you think Coach Calhoun should be disciplined for the way he responded or not?
                     ALL ADULTS..............................................
                     HEARD OR READ "A LOT" OR "SOME" Q30.....................
                                          AGE IN YRS..............   Men's
                     Tot    Men    Wom    18-34  35-49  50-64  65+   Fan q28
 
Yes                  16%    14%    18%    16%    16%    17%    12%   10%
No                   80     83     76     79     80     78     83    86
DK/NA                 5      3      6      5      4      5      5     4
 
 
33. Coach Calhoun is paid 1.6 million dollars a year. Do you think Coach Calhoun is paid too much, too little or about right?
                     ALL ADULTS..............................................
                                          AGE IN YRS..............    Men's
                     Tot    Men    Wom    18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Fan q28
 
Too much             43%    32%    52%    47%    45%    42%    38%    32%
Too little            2      4      1      2      1      3      2      3
About right          48     58     40     46     46     51     51     60
DK/NA                 7      7      7      5      7      5      8      5
 
 
34. Do you think Coach Calhoun should give back part of his 1.6 million dollar salary to help with the state's economic problems or not?
                     ALL ADULTS..............................................
                                          AGE IN YRS..............    Men's
                     Tot    Men    Wom    18-34  35-49  50-64  65+    Fan q28
 
Yes                  30%    24%    36%    33%    29%    30%    32%    24%
No                   61     68     55     62     64     64     58     71
DK/NA                 8      8      9      5      7      7     10      5