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Introducing the Rodgers Test

So, according to our friends at Public Policy Polling, Aaron Rodgers has a 89% approval rating in Wisconsin, to go with a 4% disapproval rating and 7% having no opinion. These are, according to them, the best favorability numbers they've gotten in any poll they've ever conducted. As a statistician I don't find that particularly hard to fathom -- Aaron Rodgers has the ideal mix of being a franchise cornerstone coming off a magical season and unexpected playoff run in the most popular sport in America. He's nice, nonconfrontational, and beloved.

The poll did raise the question with me, though -- what athletes would match it? That is, are there any athletes on earth with Rodgers' combination of widespread love and widespread knowledge? That is -- anybody with 90%+ approval and 7% or less nonresponse. Given how relatively neat and simple the line seems to be, I shall hereby refer to it as "the Rodgers test." It is the test of an athlete so beloved and well-known that they could outpoll God in their sphere of influence. But what's a test without some cold hard facts? For your consumption, I revved up the Poll-O-Matic 3000 and decided to pose the question with the power of instant and unbelievably accurate polling -- could any random athletes who came to mind beat Aaron Rodgers? My brilliant, groundbreaking, publishing-quality results follow.

Disclaimer: None of these are real polls. At all. They are canon, though.

  • Manny Pacquiano:  87% approval, 2% disapproval, 11% no opinion (n=242 adults in the Philippines)

    Clearly, Manny is hurt by the lack of knowledge the general populace has of boxing. If only he played something popular, like Rugby, or Checkers, or Chess -- then he would truly pass The Rodgers Test.

  • Manu Ginobili: 85% approval, 7% disapproval, 8% no opinion (n=467 adults in Argentina)

    I'm getting word that Manu's 7% disapproval comes from confused Argentinians who thought we were asking about Manchester United. I... whoops. My bad. The Poll-O-Matic has some kinks to be ironed out, Ray Davies style.

  • David Robinson: 94% approval, 1% disapproval, 5% no opinion (n=145 adults in San Antonio)

    I looked at the results for this one.  The 1% disapproval comes from David Robinson himself, who gave the interviewer a two hour sermon on how disappointed he would be with himself if he were to ever give himself credit he felt he was not due. It changed the interviewer's life and he converted to Christianity on the spot. Anyway, good job David.

  • Michael Jordan: 85% approval, 16% "too cool" for an opinion (n=26 hipsters in Chicago)

    Wait, what? Poll-O-Matic, what the hell kind of a sample size is that?

  • Roger Mason Jr.: 1% approval, 84% disapproval, 15% shot themselves immediately (n=40 adults in New York)

    Oh sweet Jesus what have I done.

I'm officially retiring the Poll-O-Matic 3000. Forever. Goodnight everybody.
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Aaron McGuire
Editor in Chief at Gothic Ginobili
Aaron McGuire works as the lead mathematician and CTO for a small financial consulting firm in Richmond, VA. As a basketball writer, he's primarily known for Gothic Ginobili's 2012 Player Capsule series, where he wrote the equivalent of 1.5 Russian novels about every NBA player around. Nowadays, he writes a weekly column on whatever he damn well feels like.

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