C-RAES Research Projects
The Center for Race & Ethnicity in Sport (C-RAES) stands in solidarity with the Black Community. Black Lives Matter!
As you will see from our lists of projects, C-RAES is primarily dedicated to engaging in scholarship and meaningful activities for and about the Black community as stakeholders and constituents of sport. We are excavating, centering, and celebrating the socially, culturally, economically, and psychologically empowering properties of race in general, and Blackness in particular. As Zora Neale Hurston stated, “Research is formalized curiosity. It is poking and prying with a purpose.” C-RAES is ‘poking and prying’ with the overall purpose of decentering the disciplinary ‘norms’ of Whiteness, and thus, attacking epistemological racism.
Announcement: Research Grants Forthcoming. The Center for Race & Ethnicity in Sport will be offering small grants for faculty, staff, and students who are interested in collaborating on research or scholarly endeavors related to race and ethnicity in sport.
Race, Gender, and Sport Leadership
- You Can’t Be Too Black: Racial Identity and Black Women in Sport Leadership. Armstrong, K. L., & Simpkins, E.(In Progress). This manuscript illustrates how racial identity impacts Black women’s sport leadership opportunities and experiences.
- Black Women in Sport Leadership: Research Imperatives. Simpkins, E., & Armstrong, K.L. (In Progress). This manuscript offers a critique of the unique experiences of Black women in sport leadership and discussed the imperatives for research (methods, epistemologies, theoretical underpinnings, etc.) seeking to appropriately explore them and improve their leadership opportunities and experiences.
- Black Women in Sport Leadership: Challenges, Aspirations, Inspirations, and Access. Simpkins, E., & Armstrong, K.L. (In Progress). Expounding on past research, this manuscript offers a critique that further supports the qualitatively different experiences and opportunities that Black women encounter in intercollegiate athletics. It offers a discussion of Black women’s access to opportunities in sport leadership, the impact of organizational cultures on Black women’s experiences, and intersecting impact of age, race, and gender on their success.
- Sport Intersectional Model of Power (SIMP): Implications for Black Women in Sport Leadership. Simpkins, E., & Armstrong, K.L. (In Progress). This manuscript offers an exploration of implications of the Sport Intersectional Model of Power (SIMP) for Black women in sport leadership. The SIMP is comprised of elements that create organizational cultures and shape the power dynamics. This manuscript was based on data obtained from interviews with Black women who were employed in sport leadership positions in NCAA Division I, II, and III institutions.
- ‘Uncaged’ - Black Women in Sport Leadership: An Organizational Critique. Simpkins, E., & Armstrong, K.L. (In Progress). This manuscript offers a critical organizational assessment of factors influencing Black women’s sport leadership opportunities and experiences. It highlights the contributions of organizational theory in: (a) expanding our conceptual understanding and framing of the dynamics present in sport organizations that adversely impact the opportunities and experiences of Black women, and (b) improving our efforts to ‘uncage’ and empower Black women for sport leadership.
- The nature of Black women’s leadership experiences in community recreation sport: An illustration of Black Feminist Thought. Armstrong, K.L. (2007). Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal, 16(1), 3-15. Sport is a social institution that is rife with raced and gendered discursive fields, creating structural and power relations that may influence the leadership experiences of Black women there-in. Tins study utilized the tenets of Black Feminist Thought as a foundation for examining the leadership experiences of a case selection of Black women (n=21) in community recreational sports. The results revealed that a personal interest in sport and an ethic of caring motivated the women’s involvement in the leadership of community recreation sports. Although the women reported barriers of gender inequity, racial discrimination, poor communication, lack of resources, and organizational constraints, they appeared to rely on their internal fortitude as a reservoir for resistance to combat the institutional challenges faced and have meaningful sport leadership experiences. The study illuminated the importance of individual consciousness to these women’s sense of self and their ability to resist the domination of the power and ideologies situated in their sport leadership settings.
- Women of Color in sport leadership. Armstrong, K.L. & O’Bryant, C. (2007). In M. Hums, G. Bower, & H. Grappendorf’s (Eds.) Women as leaders in sport: Impact and influence (pp. 269-298). Reston, VA: AAHPERD Publications. The focus of this chapter is on women of Color as leaders in sport. Both of us are women of Color and have prior experience in the leadership of sport at various levels. We provide an overview of the following: (a) an historical context of women as leaders in general and as leaders of sport in particular, (b) the current status of women of Color’s representation in the leadership of organized sport, (c) the discursive fields in sport with which women of Color must contend, (d) research considerations relative to women of Color in sport leadership, and (e) strategies for change (i.e., increasing the representation and improving the experiences of women of color in the leadership of sport).
Culture, Blackness, and Historically Black College and University Sports
- Introducing the Culture of Blackness in Sport (COBIS) Model: Preliminary Insights. McGreggor, K. K., & Armstrong, K.L. (In Progress). This manuscript discusses elements of the COBIS via elucidations of Blackness in the sport product attributes, sport product experience, and sport event ambiance and their impact on Black sport consumers’ satisfaction. It discusses applications of the COBIS to marketing HBCU sports.
- Ethnography and Sport Consumer Research. McGreggor, K. K., & Armstrong, K.L. (In Progress). This manuscript discusses the value and unique contributions of ethnography as a research methodology to explore elements of culture and other dynamics of sport consumption. It highlights the particular role ethnographic research may play in understanding Black consumers sport consumption experiences.
- HBCU Sports: ‘More Than a Game.’ McGreggor, K. K., & Armstrong, K.L. (In Progress). This manuscript discusses the social, psychological, and cultural significance of HBCU sports to its Black attendees and to the Black community at large. It offers a counter-narrative to the premise that HBCUs have outlived their contemporary relevance. It also discusses ways of leveraging the social cultural value of HBCU sport to enhance their marketing effectiveness.
- Historically Black College and University Sports: Race, Meanings, and Matters. Armstrong, K.L., & McGreggor, K. (In progress). According to Kambon (1998) the thoughts, behaviors, and functioning of individuals of African descent are often influenced by an underlying racially conscious (Africentric) worldview. Sport and leisure consumption offers a unique modality to examine the salience of racial attributes to human behavior (Armstrong 2012). Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the meanings and matters of HBCU sports to Black consumers based on attributes that corresponded to DuBois’ perspectives of racial distinction and racial construction. Data were collected via observations and semi-structured interviews with 51 Black attendees at an HBCU sport event. The results illustrated the fundamental role race performed regarding the meanings and matters of HBCU sports.
- An exploratory examination of Black consumers’ motivations to attend an Ohio HBCU football classic. Armstrong, K.L. (2003, Summer/Spring). Future Focus, 17-24. The purpose of this exploratory study was to examine Black consumers’ motives for attending a Historically Black College/University (HBCU) sport classic football event located in the Midwestern region of the US. The factors explored included: (a) being a football fan, (b) the quality of the teams competing, (c) to support HBCUs, (d) to see Black athletes perform, (e) to see the (Black) bands’ performances, (f) the Afrocentric atmosphere, (g) pressure from friends/family, and (h) an opportunity for social outing/entertainment. The sample consisted of 278 self-identified Black consumers in attendance at the event. Approximately 57% of the consumers were female and 43% were male, and the largest group (42%) were aged 25-34. Factor analyses reduced the eight items to three factors: cultural, sport, and social/entertainment. The results revealed that the cultural factor was the most influential attendance motive, followed by the opportunity for social outing/entertainment, and affinity to sport. No difference was found in the composite influence of the culture factor based on gender; however, the males were motivated more than females by their perceived obligation to support HBCUs. Also, the cultural motive was not sensitive to (i.e., not statistically related to) the consumers’ age, education, or income. Additionally, although the sport factor was the least influential motive, as previous research has generally revealed, the sport-related motives were more salient to the male than female consumers. The significance of the findings were their overall support and further reiteration of the salience of the cultural packaging of HBCU sports as a market attraction for Black consumers.
- Black consumers’ spending and Historically Black College sport events: The marketing implications. Armstrong, K.L. (2001). Sport Marketing Quarterly, 10(2), 102-111. Historically Black and College/Universities (HBCU) play a critical role in the culture of the HBCU sports and the Black community in its celebration and affirmation of elements associated with Black culture. Consequently, attendance at some longstanding and historically prominent HBCU sport events has occurred in record breaking numbers, allowing them to make viable financial contributions to the respective universities and the local environments in which the events are held. However, based on the sociocultural salience of HBCU sports, there is a need to determine and maximize the marketing and economic potential of HBCU sport events that are in their developmental stages. Herein was the purpose of this two-part study which was based on a case analysis of a relatively new HBCU sport football event. Data were collected using a three-prong method that yielded a total sample of 675: (a) questionnaires were distributed to the hotels and various other sites of the event’s activities (n=100), (b) questionnaires were mailed to event attendees (n=350), and (c) telephone interviews were conducted with event attendees (n=225). The results revealed that 75% of the attendees attended the event with social referents (a group, organization, or friends), and 58% travelled to the event by car. The direct spending of the consumers based on the data examined exceeded $5million, with an estimated multiplied impact of visitor spending exceeding $11million and the creation of 212 jobs. The consumers’ spending allocation was 42% on retail, 30% on lodging, 15% on tickets, and 13% on meals. This research illustrated the sociocultural and economic salience of HBCU sports and the need for strategic marketing to maximize their contributions to HBCUs, the Black community, and the overall sport industry.
Race and the Black Male Student-Athlete
- Race, Sport, and Sociocognitive “Place” in Higher Education: Black Male Student-Athletes as Critical Theorists. Armstrong, K.L., & Jennings, M.A., (2018). The purpose of this research was to further examine the juxtaposition of race, sport, and higher education. It utilized an existential-phenomenological approach to obtain data from a purposeful case selection of three Black male student-athletes enrolled in a National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division 1 collegiate football program. Through the lenses of social-cognitive theory and critical race theory, the results elucidated (a) the impact of race as a psychological, cultural, and social anchor of “place” for Black male student-athletes on a predominantly White college/university campus, and (b) race intersectionality with age, gender, social class, and environment to influence their educational experience. The contributions of Black male student-athletes as critical theorists are highlighted, and a model depicting the relationships between race, sport, and the sociocognitive “place” of Black males in higher education as articulated by the participants is presented.
- Black coaches’ roles in the holistic development of student-athletes. Singer, J. & Armstrong, K.L. (2001, Winter). Academic Athletic Journal, 15(2), 114-131. This study examined Black coaches’ (n=123) perceptions of their roles in the holistic development of student-athletes and barriers impeding their contributions. The sample consisted of predominately (71%) male coaches, 60% were assistant coaches, 63% were employed at the NCAA Division I level, 64% coached male-student-athletes, 63% coached the sport of basketball, and 51% of their teams were comprised of majority Black student-athletes. The findings revealed that: (a) the coaches generally agreed with their responsibilities regarding assisting student-athletes with personal problems and academics, yet were in less agreement concerning their role in actively seeking culture support for athletes; (b) the coaches assessed the Black student-athletes’ experiences to be less favorable than student-athletes in general; and (c) coaches whose teams were comprised of predominately Black student-athletes were in higher agreement that coaches had a responsibility to monitor the friends of their student-athletes than were the coaches whose teams were comprised of predominately White student-athletes. Additionally, time constraints, institutional barriers, and coaching demands were the most prevalent barriers coaches face regarding their ability to contribute to their student-athletes’ development. Moreover, coaches with teams comprised of predominately Black student-athletes were more likely to report that institutional barriers impacting their contributions than coaches who did not coach predominately Black student-athletes. The results: (a) revealed the extent to which race, as a team demographic, impacted the coaches’ perceptions of their roles, and (b) supported the need for culturally relevant student-athlete development. As Cheatham and Berg-Cross (1992) opined, “collegiate environments that do not acknowledge and incorporate cultural values of African-Americans and other ethnic minority students retard rather than promote these students’ psychosocial development” (p. 179).
Race and the Black Female Student-Athlete
- Factors influencing the sport participation patterns of African American Females. Bruening, J., Pastore, D., & Armstrong. K.L. (2008). International Council for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, Sport and Dance – Journal of Research, 3 (1), 12-21. While Tiger Woods and the Williams sisters are breaking the stereotype of what constitutes "White sports" and "Black sports," most African Americans are still found in the traditional "Black sports." In examining why the majority of Black women participate in basketball and track and field, the researchers studied twelve African American female collegiate athletes through the use of four focus groups and four subsequent individual interviews with selected focus group participants. The researchers present data from the focus groups and the individual interviews in the form of quotations from the participants on their views of the influence of societal systems (geographic region, socioeconomic status, neighborhood, school), influential others (e.g., family members, coaches, teachers, peers), and expectations in terms of choice of sports. The participants also share their opinions on the current state of Black female sport participation leading to the discussion and implications of the study.
- Listening to the voices: The experiences of African American female student athletes. Bruening, J., Armstrong, K.L., & Pastore, D.L. (2005). Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, 76(1), 82-100. “Women of color . . .have historically been silenced in society and sport” (Smith, 1992, p. 228). This study examined the sport participation patterns of 12 African American female collegiate student athletes using qualitative methods. Data were collected at a large midwestern university during the 1998–99 academic year. An emergent theme was the effect of silencing by the media, athletic administrators, coaches, and other student athletes on the experiences of African American female student athletes. The findings are presented in the following order: the theoretical framework for the study, an introduction to silencing, an overview of the research analyses, a description of the research setting, and a presentation of the data surrounding the theme of silencing as told through the participants’ voices. Following these sections is a discussion and suggestions for future research.
Race and Sport Marketing (Merchandising and Media Advertising)
- Racioethnic self-referencing and the symbolic consumption of sport merchandise: A standpoint theory analysis. Armstrong, K.L. (2017). International Journal of Sport Management, 18(3), 348-371. This investigation examined the influence of race/ethnicity as athlete brand markers on the frequency in which consumers with different racial designations (e.g., Caucasians or Individuals of Color) engaged in the symbolic behavior of wearing associated sport team merchandise. Data were obtained from a sample of 479 respondents (51% Caucasians, 49% Individuals of Color) who resided in the western region of the United States. Results revealed that the groups had similar sport affinity profiles; however, the product attributes of logos/colors and the race/ethnicity of athletes were more salient to the sport consumption decision of the respondents of Color. Both groups wore sport team merchandise at a similar frequency; however, for the respondents of Color this behavior was significantly influenced by the presence of athletes on sport teams from their racial/ethnic group. The phenomenon of racioethnic self-referencing in sport is discussed and interpreted through the lenses of the standpoint theories of critical race theory and whiteness theory. (348-371)
- Nike’s communication with Black audiences: A sociological analysis of advertising effectiveness via Symbolic Interactionism. Armstrong, K. L. (1999). Journal of Sport and Social Issues, 23(3), 266- 286. An increase in the size and resources of the Black consumer market has prompted many organizations to increase their understanding of the challenges of devising marketing communications to appeal to Black consumers. The influence of culture on communication strategies aimed at ethnic groups has long been realized by marketers and advertising professionals. However, what remains a challenge is the means of adapting an effective (yet nonoffensive) culturally-based approach of marketing communication. Given the salience of sport to Blacks, this is a challenge that sport organizations should also address as they devise ways of advertising and communicating sport products and services to Black consumers. This article will employ the tenets of symbolic interactionism, to analyze Nike’s advertisements as vehicles to communicate with Black audiences.
The Psychology of Race and Sport & Leisure
- Towards a Black Psychology of Leisure: An ‘Akbarian’ Critique. Armstrong, K.L. (2013). Western Journal of Black Studies, 37(3), 212-222. There are a number of institutions posited as vestibules for maintaining and reinforcing rituals and celebrations of African consciousness (i.e., education, religion, arts, etc.). The one that does not readily come to mind, however, is leisure (i.e., organized sport and physical activity). Leisure is salient to African Americans and is the terrain by which their personal and social identities are often nurtured. Ironically, leisure also represents a cultured space where racial oppression abounds, and is therefore often a contested space for African Americans. The essay offers a critique of the emancipatory properties of leisure through the lenses of Na’im Akbar’s African-centered paradigm, via the tenets of self-knowledge (e.g. racial-self affirmation and collective liberation (e.g., spiritual rhythm and racial kinship). It demonstrates how (at the individual/micro level) African Americans may engage in constitutive and regulatory leisure practices that enlarge their spiritual, experiential, and perceptual spheres of freedom, thereby allowing them some control over the nature and quality of their leisure experiences. In so doing, this essay elucidates the ‘Black Psychology’ that undergirds African Americans’ leisure pursuits.
Race, Ethnicity, and Market Preferences
- Free agency and team-market ethnic congruence: Excavations of the ethnic preferences of Hispanic Major League Baseball players. Xu, W., & Armstrong, K.L. (2015). International Journal of Sport Studies. The purpose of this investigation was two-fold: (a) to examine the phenomenon of Hispanic team-market congruence in MLB, and (b) to explore the ethnic market preferences of MLB Hispanic players as implied in the pattern conveyed in free agency decisions. Variables posited as predictors of MLB Hispanic composition were: markets’ Hispanic composition, markets’ size, markets’ income, teams’ payroll, and teams’ winning percentages. Natural logs were taken of MSA population, per capita income and CPI adjusted payroll variables were used in multiple regression models. The results revealed that the predictors explained 30% of the composition of MLB Hispanic free agents, with the markets’ Hispanic population being the strongest predictor; and only 15% of the composition of MLB Hispanic non-free agents, with the markets’ Hispanic population being insignificant. The results explicated an inferred salience of ethnocentricity to MLB Hispanic free agents’ and evidenced a bi-dimensional model of acculturation in the free agency market selection phenomenon. These findings attest to the need for cultural competencies in marketing and in the glocalization of US sports.
- Market analyses of race and sport consumption. Armstrong, K.L., & Strata, T.P. (2004). Sport Marketing Quarterly, 13(1), 7-16. Numerous sociodemographic variables (i.e., age, gender, income, and occupation) have been found to influence sport consumption; however, research examining the influence of race/ethnicity on sport consumption has yielded conflicting results. The purpose of this study was to further examine the manifestations of race on sport consumption. Data were collected at women's professional basketball games from Black and White spectators (n = 2,063) in two different US markets (one in the midwest and the other in the south). The findings generally revealed consistent similarities and differences in the Black and White spectators' sport consumption patterns in both markets. The results implied an influence of race effects (i.e., the racial classification of the spectator/consumer, the racial demographics of the sport team as the product to be consumed, and the racial demographics of the environment in which the sport consumption takes place) on sport consumption.
Race, Sport, and Black Women’s Physical Activity
- Correlates and predictors of Black women’s physical activity: Afrocentric insights. Armstrong, K.L. (2013). Journal of Black Studies, 44(6), 627-645. The health benefits of physical activity have long been well documented. However, standing at the crossroads of gender, race, and physical inactivity are Black women. Consequently, Black women tend to have higher health maladies than Black males, Caucasian women, and other Women of Color. As such, this investigation sought to examine the behavioral correlates and predictors of a case selection of Black women’s (N = 123) physical activity, noting the impact of race. The analyses revealed that: (a) the women were moderately physically active, (b) their physical activity was positively correlated with their sport media behaviors, and (c) psychological stimulation, educational attainment, and racial identification were positive predictors of their participation in physical activity. A noteworthy contribution of this exploratory investigation was the finding of an operative and influential ‘raced/Black psyche’ and the illumination of the corresponding Afrocentric insights yielded. Keywords Black/African American women, racial identity, Afrocentricity, physical activity. A noteworthy contribution of this exploratory investigation was the finding of an operative and influential ‘raced/Black psyche’ and the illumination of the corresponding Afrocentric insights yielded.
- Black women’s participation in sport and fitness: Implications for sport marketing. Armstrong, K.L. (2001). Sport Marketing Quarterly,10 (1), 9-18. Notwithstanding the increased importance of women and ethnic minority consumers to sport, little attention has been devoted to Black women’s involvement in sport and leisure. This research sought to fill part of this void. It was based on a national sample (2,478) of majority (57%) middle-aged (25-39) Black women selected from the frame of a popular magazine targeted to African American women’s issues with a circulation of approximately 1 million. The results revealed that 64% of the women were active participants in sport or a regular exercise program, walking was the most frequent activity, and higher participation rates were found among the older in comparison to the younger women. The activities took place in the women’s homes (39%), outdoors (36%), and to a lesser extent at health clubs (25%). The primary motives for the women’s participation in sport and fitness activities were to maintain or improve their health (58%) or to lose weight (54%), and to a lesser extent to have fun (28%). The barriers the women experienced differed based on their age; however, as a whole the major obstacle was a lack of motivation (47%) and the lack of time (43%). The women aged 24-34 were more likely than other groups to cite costs and lack of time as barriers. This article discussed the need for marketing strategies that appeal to Black women’s duality based on their race and gender.
Race, Culture, and Sport Consumption
- Cultural essence and sport consumption: Marketing organizational charisma. Armstrong, K.L. (2013). Innovative Marketing, 9(1), 62-71. The purpose of this study is to examine the effects of embodied, objectified, and institutionalized elements of sport organizations’ cultural essence (collectively posited as ‘cultural charisma’) on sport consumption. It is framed in the paradigm of organizational symbolism. Data for the study was obtained from a convenience sample of respondents (N = 476) who resided in a large metropolitan area on the west coast of the United States. The results (obtained via correlation and regression analyses) revealed that organizational cultural charisma was positively related to consumers’ organizational associations and was a positive predictor of their sport consumption frequency. Additionally, cultural charisma may be considered a ‘subordinate’ capital (i.e., it was more salient to Individuals of Color and to the younger, less educated, and less affluent respondents), with one exception – it was more salient to males than to females. This investigation elucidated the role of culture in the branding of sport organizations and offered insight regarding marketing strategy in general and managing the process of marketing cultural essence in particular. In doing so, it illustrated how the ideological premise of organizational culture as a component of marketing theory can be translated into effective marketing practice.
- Consumers of Color and the ‘culture’ of sport attendance: Exploratory insights. Armstrong, K.L. (2008). Sport Marketing Quarterly, 17(4), 218-231. The primary purpose of this study was to examine factors influencing the sport attendance of a convenience sample of Consumers of Color (n=129) and Caucasian consumers (n=172) who resided in a large urban area on the West Coast of the United States. No significant differences were revealed in the consumers’ attitudes about sports, their level of sport fanship, or their predominant sport consumption patterns. Regarding sport attendance, no significant differences were found between the consumer groups on the importance of event accessibility or event attractiveness factors. Significant differences were revealed, however, in the importance of the event culture factors such that the event’s family appeal, entertainment, and promotions were more important to the Consumers of Color than they were to the Caucasian consumers. The results are discussed in the context of multiculturalism and the psychosocial salience of sport event cultures to Consumers of Color.
- Blacks’ consumption of sport: Race matters! Armstrong, K.L. (2007). In D. Brooks & R. Althouse (Eds.) Diversity and social justice in college sports: Sport management and the student athlete (pp. 357-378). Morgantown, WV: Fitness Information Technology. The focus of this chapter was on the impact of race on African Americans’ consumption of sport. This chapter began with an overview of African Americans’ sport consumption preferences, patterns, and tendencies. The chapter offered an introduction to the economical and sociological perspectives of sport consumption, and reviewed African Americans’ sport consumption patterns and tendencies based on these paradigms. The chapter then took the reader through a historical journey of the African American sport fan experience from being one of discrimination to one of affirmation. Next, the chapter addressed the economic attractiveness of African American consumers and the use of hip-hop as a means by which sport organizations have sought to facilitate business with African Americans consumers (and the markets/consumers they influence). The chapter concluded with a summary of three core themes that illustrate the significance of race (and race-related constructs such as ethnicity) to African Americans’ consumption of sport.
- Race and sport consumption: A preliminary investigation of a Black consumers sport motivation scale. Armstrong, K.L. (2002). Journal of Sport Behavior 25(4), 309-330. Researchers have addressed the need to identify factors that motivate sport consumption (i.e., behaviors such as sport spectating, actual sport participation, and/or sport media consumption). However variables that have been notably absent in such investigations are motives that are racially/ethnically salient. In addition, due to the minimal representations of Black participants in previous sport motivation examinations, questions remain regarding whether the findings revealed by predominantly White samples are applicable to Blacks. As such, the purpose of this study was two-fold: (a) to administer the Sport Fan Motivation Scale as developed by Wann (1995) and validated by Wann, Schrader, and Wilson (1999) to a substantive sample (n=226) of Black consumers sport, while (b) concurrently examining the inclusion of an exploratory cultural affiliation motive. The results revealed that cultural affiliation was a viable motive for Blacks' sport consumption. Similar to previous research findings, Blacks rated Wann's (1995) entertainment motive the highest and the economic motive the lowest. Correlations between sport motivations and demographic characteristics (i. e., age, income, and education) revealed in this study differed from previous research. Most notably, this study did not yield pronounced gender differences. In addition, a factor structure emerged in this study that differed from previous validations, yielding a Black Consumers' Sport Motivation Scale (BCSMS), which (in this preliminary investigation) represented favorable internal consistency and was significantly correlated with the participants' sport consumption patterns.
- An examination of the social psychology of Blacks’ consumption of sport. Armstrong, K.L. (2002). Journal of Sport Management, 16(4), 267-288. Black consumers' general sport attendance is relatively poor; however, their attendance at historically Black college/university (HBCU) sport events is noteworthy. The purpose of this study was to examine how factors such as general perception of sport, psychosocial involvement with HBCU sports, and intensity of ethnic identification influenced Black consumers' (n = 278) attendance at HBCU sports and their general/non-HBCU sport consumption patterns. Descriptive statistics revealed that the respondents attended HBCU sports more frequently than they did any other type of sport events and were also avid consumers of televised sports. Multivariate multiple regression analyses revealed that intensity of ethnic identification and psychosocial involvement with HBCU sports significantly influenced HBCU sports attendance frequency. Moreover, psychosocial involvement with HBCU sports exerted a profound and positive influence on general sport consumption. This study offered an examination of the social psychology that may under gird Blacks' consumption of sport.
- Creating multicultural sport spectating experiences: Marketing the sociology of sport consumption. Armstrong, K.L. (2001). International Journal of Sport Management, 2(3), 183-204. Sport spectating has a multicultural and universal appeal as a popular leisure activity. The transition of the US being a predominately Caucasian population rooted in Western culture to one comprised of diverse racial and ethnic inhabitants (Gardenswartz and Rowe, 1994; O’Hare, 1992) will undoubtedly impact college and university sport spectating. However, specific information on ethnic minority communities’ consumption of college sports is lacking, thus the purpose of this study. Data were collected via convenience sampling in two phases at a Division I university located in the Midwestern region of the US, with a predominately White student enrollment. Phase one ascertained the ethnic minority students’ (n=341) general attitude towards sports. This sample for this phase of the research was 70% African American, 13% Asian, 10% Hispanic, and 7% Native Americans, Mixed/Interracial, Pacific Islander, etc. Phase one results revealed that the students had a favorable attitude towards sport, with the ratings of the African-American and Hispanic students being the most favorable. Phase two examined ethnic minority students’ (n=145) sport attendance patterns and the extent to which a number of factors (related to the opponents, academic obligations, significant others, ticket price and availability, option to watch sports on television, preference to spend money on other matters, etc.) motivated their attendance at the university’s sport events. The students for this sample were 71% African-American, 20% Asian, 3% Hispanic, 3% Native American, and the remaining 3% being a number of ‘other’ race/ethnicities. The results of phase two revealed that only 15% of the students ‘regularly’ attended the university’s sport events, notably football, basketball, and track and field events. The factors identified as influential to their attendance decisions received fairly ‘neutral’ ratings; however, the most influential factor was their option to spend money on other things besides sports, followed closely by the opportunity to watch sports on television. Additionally, academic commitments, significant others, and circle of friends were found to be more influential for the Asian students’ (for which 54% were graduate students) sport attendance. The article discussed the role of sociology in assisting sport marketers in creating multicultural sport spectating experiences.
Race and Information Processing
- Black students’ responses to Afrocentric communication stimuli. Armstrong, K.L. (2005). Journal of Black Psychology, 39(1), 67-86. This study examined Black students’ cognitive and affective responses to race of messenger and cultural content of message as Afrocentric communication stimuli. The sample consisted of 127 Black students (89 in the experimental group and 38 in the control group). Results of a 2 x 2 factorial MANOVA design indicated minimal yet significant main effects for messenger and message content stimuli; however, several significant Race of Messenger x Message Content interactions were revealed. The general nature of the findings offered notable support for the premise of Afrocentricity as a paradigm from which to effectively communicate with Black message recipients.
- African-American students’ response to race as a source cue in persuasive sport communications. Armstrong, K.L. (2000). Journal of Sport Management, 14, 208-226. Sport managers and marketers strategically include individuals with specific characteristics as spokespersons in their persuasive communications (i.e., advertisements, promotional messages, development campaigns, and announcements) to appeal to and influence the attitudes and behaviors of their intended audience. This study was designed to examine African-American students’ responses to race (when moderated by the students' ethnic identification) as a salient characteristic of the person featured in a persuasive sport communication. It sought to examine the role of race in the communication process as: (a) a heuristic/peripheral cue for inducing message responses and evaluation, and (b) a variable that influenced the students' tendency to engage in biased or objective strategies to process the information presented. The results offer an illustration of how sociological variables such as race and ethnicity influence the communication process in general and the means of communicating sport related issues to African-American students in particular.
Race & Sport: Forward, Special Issue of the Journal of Sport Management
‘Lifting the veils and illuminating the shadows’: Furthering the explorations of race and ethnicity in Sport Management. Armstrong, K.L. (2011). Journal of Sport Management (Guest Editor, Special Issue), 25(2), 95-106. This essay provided a general introduction to and foundation for the scholarly explorations of how race and ethnicity impact Sport Management. Briefly discussed are the changing portraits of racial and ethnic demography, the conceptual treatments of race and ethnicity, and the methodological challenges and research imperatives. This essay also offered a brief summary of the trends in research on race and ethnicity in Sport Management, and it provided an integrated overview of the scholarship featured in this Special Issue which (in varied ways) explicate the salience of race and ethnicity to Sport Management practices, and to the experiences of sport employees, athletes, and sport marketing and media consumers.