Local News

So U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell is unpopular but still beats all Democratic rivals in hypothetical 2014 re-election matchups, according to data from Public Policy Polling.

That’s important. But who is better liked, John Calipari or Rick Pitino? Which NFL team do Kentuckians prefer, anyway? PPP asked survey respondents these question, too, and a handful of other miscellaneous queries.

For instance, 36 percent of Kentuckians surveyed supported the Louisville Cardinals’ move to the Atlantic Coast Conference, PPP said. The majority, 53 percent, answered “not sure” and 11 percent said they were opposed to the move.

Here’s a possible answer for those “not sures.” Kentucky Wildcats fans account for 66 percent of Kentuckians; Louisville fans account for 17 percent, PPP’s polling suggests. It’s highly possible that Wildcats fans in Russellville could not care less which conference the Cardinals belongs to, but that’s just conjecture based on having been to Russellville.

Based in North Carolina, PPP surveyed 1,266 registered Kentucky voters through automated telephone interviews from Dec. 7 to 9 . The margin of error is 2.8 percent.

Fourty-nine percent of respondents had a favorable opinion of John Calipari, the Kentucky Wildcats men’s basketball coach, PPP said. Fifteen percent had unfavorable opinions.

He tops his counterpart at the University of Louisville — a former Kentucky coach. Pitino’s favorability rating is 44 percent; his unfavorabilty rating is 32 percent.

More sports. Kentucky’s preferred NFL team, by a plurality, is the Cincinnati Bengals, PPP’s polling said. The Bengals were chosen by 25 percent of respondents, following by the Cowboys and the Packers with 11 percent apiece.

What, say Colts fans? How? The Colts were favored by nine percent of respondents, followed by the Steelers (seven percent), the Bears (eight percent) and the Titans (five percent).

Twenty-five percent told PPP that their favorite team wasn’t a listed option, or that they didn’t care for football.

Zero percent — but one percent of men polled — said they preferred the St. Louis Rams, which is only slightly worse than in St. Louis.

Here’s one that’s hard to believe, until you delve into the numbers — 61 percent of Kentuckians don’t have a whiskey, PPP’s polling says. But the only two options listed were Jim Beam and Jack Daniel’s. Beam, a bourbon, was preferred by 20 percent of poll respondents and Jack was preferred by 18 percent.

But women preferred Jack, 19 percent to 17 percent, PPP says.