GREENVILLE, NC (WNCT)- Millions across the country will tune into the college football national championship game on Monday night. While many are focused on the game, a recent study looks into what can happen off the field on game days.
A report by the National Bureau for Economic Research suggests college game days can cause an increase in reported rapes. The report features data from nearly 96 D-1 schools across the country, including East Carolina University, Clemson, and Virgina Tech.
Researchers found football games increase daily rape reports by 28 percent for women ages 17 to 24. It shows as many as 700 additional rapes are reported because of football, and annual costs for them could reach $200 million.
The study says the increase could be caused by a link between football games and excessive partying. Most students agree that could be the case.
ECU student Haley Meyer said, “I feel like on game days a lot of people are way more intoxicated than they normally would be going out on like a normal day, so obviously your judgement is going to be not as good as it would normally be.”
“People start drinking so early on game days and when you go downtown at night that’s not until later, and people just keep drinking and drinking and drinking,” ECU student Morgan Bailey said.
One student noted the nature of the game as another possible cause.
“I guess the built up testosterone, just getting pumped for the game I guess you kind of feel like you’re invincible and can do whatever you want,” ECU student Phillip Wester said.
Students say the report won’t stop them from going to games, but it’ll definitely be in the back of their minds.
A spokeswoman with the Greenville Police Department says their numbers don’t match the study’s findings. Out of all their report sexual assaults in 2015, only two were on game days, and none of those victims were students.
All of the data for the study was collected using the National Incident Based Reporting System. Researchers say they started the study because they wanted to see the effects big time football programs have on the average student’s life and universities in general.