The researchers used data from a 2009 Sports Illustrated survey on fan devotion, looking mostly at the survey question, "Which school is your biggest conference rival?" Researchers noted how successful schools generate feelings of rivalry from many schools, such as the University of Southern California within its conference. They concluded Boise State was the most hated team in 2009.
Within a conference, the most intense two-way rivalry was between Central Michigan and Western Michigan, according to researchers. Next was the rivalry between Arizona and Arizona State.
"This does not mean that feelings are stronger in Michigan than they are in Arizona," Deck said in a statement. "It only means that the fan base's feelings about each other are more aligned. In other words, Central Michigan fans' dislike is concentrated on Western Michigan and vice versa, slightly more so than the mutual feelings of dislike between Arizona and Arizona State, because those fans also dislike USC."Go Devils!