Is this a design difference or are there actual functional differences between airplanes that have control yokes (like Cessna 182's) or sticks (like Diamonds) or side yokes (like Cirrus)?
There are indeed some links when it comes to the type of control and the design maneuverability of the aircraft.
Let´s take a look at the good old yokes and let us imagine ourselves twisting it to bank. We would be moving it with a twisting motion of one or both arms and in general, aircraft fitted with such yokes are capable of low to moderate roll rates. Big displacements are uncommon but small, rapid, alternating changes are common.
Now consider a stick, central to the pilot flying. This is moved with a movement of the arm, generally only one, and can be rapidly displaced easily. This is normally associated with aircraft with high rates of roll, especially in an aircraft designed to rapidly null out or reverse the roll. It is also physically easier to move a stick than a yoke under high-G as the arm movement gives a longer lever. This would not be easy to do with a yoke, specially in a WAR!!!