After attempting to kill any and everything from napkins to wine corks to sex, Millennials—the oft-criticized generation born between the early 1980s to 2000—have their sights set on a new target: sports. Once known for being impervious to the drop in TV ratings, sports have seen a decline in viewership and attendance while the median age of fans continues to rise. Sports media behemoths such as ESPN, Fox Sports and Sports Illustrated have all recently dealt with massive layoffs and downsizing due to the changing climate of the market.
According to a Magna Global Study, the median age for NFL and MLB fans are 50 and 57, respectively. And while the action sports crowd has gotten older, their median age is still 47—a decade younger than that of baseball’s crowd. In fact, action sports are the fourth most-watched sport by the prized 18-to-35 demographic.
And the future of sports has never been murkier than it is today, thanks—in part—to those blasted millennials who aren’t watching sports at the same rate as their elders. Millennials might not be the only reason that sports are on the decline, but the Big 4—NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL—can learn a lot from their tendencies, and how action sports cater to the ever-important youths.