Are Football Friday temperatures so warm that hot chocolate sales are down?

(Photo: Getty)

It’s no surprise that it’s been a fairly warm season for Football Fridays in the Valley lately (especially for the 2016 and 2017 seasons).

For the first half of October 2017, kickoff temperatures hovered in the 70s and barely cooled into the upper 60s by 4th quarter.

The second half of October brought cooler temperatures, but not nearly as cold as what occurred in previous seasons.

Fall 2016 was abnormally warm: One game in early October kicked off with temperatures near 80 degrees! The majority of the games took place with temperatures in the upper 60s to low 70s — hardly considered hot chocolate weather.

Fall 2015 was considered an average year, with a few games in the 70s but a majority of the games in the 50s and 60s.

Contrast this with the 2013 and 2014 seasons, which featured games in the 30s/low 40s!

Football Friday Hot Chocolate Index

When defining the “hot chocolate index”, we took a look at the kick off and 4th quarter temperatures for all October games through the first week of November. This meant that some seasons had 5 games while others had 6.

We then compared the game average (kickoff to 4th quarter) to the average “heating degree day” (HDD), which is defined as 65 degrees. The more “degrees” away from an HDD, the more likely someone would buy hot chocolate. We defined the index as being 1 cup of hot chocolate per 5 degrees below the average HDD.

So how’s the “hot chocolate index” fared in the previous 5 seasons?

As previously mentioned, both 2013 and 2014 featured some hand-numbing cold games! In 2013, one game kicked off with temperatures in the low 40s, and they dipped to near-freezing in the 4th quarter.

The season also featured two other games in which temperatures hovered in the low-to-mid 50s, which is quite chilly considering there is no sunshine to provide radiative warmth.

The 2014 season featured a big switch from the first half to the second:

Halloween 2014 was likely a miserable holiday for those who chose a thin costume to wear at the game: Kickoff temperatures were in the low 40s, and they nearly dipped to the 30s in the 4th quarter!

The 2015 Season was fairly average, with a few games in the 50s/low 60s but the rest in a comfortable 70 degree range.

Both 2016 and 2017 featured one-or-two games in the 50s, but otherwise temperatures remained quite warm.

So are hot chocolate sales actually down?

We are inferring data about hot chocolate sales from game time temperatures, but so far, we do not have any actual sales data from high school concession stands during Football Fridays. If you have noticed a trend in your hot chocolate sales, please let us know! Submit a photo of your sales receipts with the button below!