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Gidon Jakar and Stephanie Gerretsen

European soccer clubs have different ownership models, some of which are still dependent on or controlled by the public sector. The authors investigate club performance in the 2006–2018 Union of European Football Associations’ Champions League seasons, using a random-effects and ordered logistic model, to identify how different ownerships are associated with performance and what other factors, such as Financial Fair Play, determine the likelihood of European soccer clubs progressing through the tournament and increasing their revenues. The private ownership structure is statistically significant and positively associated with the probability of qualifying for later rounds in the Champions League and consequently leading to increased revenues. These results, however, vary before and after Financial Fair Play was implemented. It is apparent that the objective to implement a policy designed to increase competitiveness requires a more in-depth approach than Financial Fair Play as wealthier clubs, despite their ownership model, are more likely to be more successful and widen the gap.

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Cleo Schyvinck, Kathy Babiak, Bram Constandt, and Annick Willem

Despite the widespread growth of corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives in sport, the majority of professional sport teams still manage social engagement in an opportunistic manner. Tactical attempts toward CSR management can provide discrete and short-term benefits, but lack the ability to create lasting social and economic impacts. This study uses an entrepreneurship perspective to study CSR management in sport. More specifically, it builds on the concept of corporate social entrepreneurship (CSE) to study the transition toward more strategic CSR approaches. Through an in-depth study of a single professional soccer case in Belgium, the drivers of CSE and their relation to strategic CSR development and implementation were explored. The findings indicate the importance of having an intrapreneur, an enabling organization, and, to some extent, stakeholder alliances. Challenges, however, arise at the level of organizational culture and aiming for shared value creation.

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A. Lamont Williams

In this manuscript, the author describes their unexpected grieving process in dealing with the death of Kobe Bryant. In particular, the author focuses on the mourning process on tragic celebrity deaths and the relationship between celebrity, mortality, and the ways in which people make sense of themselves through celebrity figures. The author attempts to highlight the complicated nature of mourning celebrity figures who are not personally known, especially those that have a complicated history in the public eye. The author moves into and through their own personal experiences as a Black man in order to make sense of public mourning, race, and the Black Masculinity of Kobe Bryant.

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Cindy Lee, Hyejin Bang, and David J. Shonk

As professional sport teams’ involvement with corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities are prevalent and expected by the public, there has been more attention on the factors that can influence consumers’ reactions to CSR activities. This study investigated the influence of two factors—corporate image and organization choice of communication vehicle—on individuals’ responses, perceived motive, and change of attitude to a professional team sports organization’s CSR activities. A total of 225 usable surveys were collected from a university located in the southern region of the United States for data analyses. The study showed that corporate image had a main effect on perceived motives, M unfavorable = 5.07, M favorable = 5.60, F(1, 216) = 6.38, p < .05, ηp2=.03, and attitudes, M unfavorable = 4.64, M favorable = 5.49; F(1, 216) = 18.34, p < .05, ηp2=.08, toward the team due to CSR activities, while there was no main effect for the professional team sports organization’s chosen communication vehicle, F(2, 217) = 1.09, p > .05, for their CSR activities. The importance of building good corporate image and communicating CSR activities to the fan base are also discussed.

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Jennifer Hamer, Ben Desbrow, and Chris Irwin

In the last decade, there has been greater appreciation of the harmful consequences of Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (RED-S), particularly in adolescent female athletes. Coaches act as both important moderators in the development of the condition and as identifiers of athletes at risk. Research suggests that coaches lack knowledge on this topic. At present, it is unclear if RED-S education is incorporated into coach accreditation pathways. The aim of this scoping review was to describe the extent to which RED-S education is incorporated into the coach accreditation pathways of endurance sporting organizations. Five national sporting organizations (Cycling Australia, Athletics Australia, Swimming Australia, Triathlon Australia, and Rowing Australia) were contacted to participate. First, each sporting organization’s website was scoped, then semi-structured interviews were conducted online. One investigator transcribed each interview verbatim. Transcripts were analyzed for thematic content. Four of the sporting organizations provided little to no RED-S education. Rowing Australia delivered a program of RED-S content via an affiliated sports dietitian. The barriers identified for implementation of RED-S content were: limited time, resources, and coaches’ preexisting knowledge and beliefs. Based on these results, RED-S education is, indeed, lacking in some coach accreditation programs for endurance-based sporting organizations. Support for these organizations is required to overcome existing barriers and to facilitate inclusion of RED-S education within the coaching curriculum to support female athlete health.

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Jay Scherer

In 1976, amidst a period of détente in the Cold War, the Government of Canada officially hosted an inaugural open-play invitational ice hockey tournament. A detailed narration of these events, pieced together from archival sources, allows scholars to understand the negotiations to prepare the political terrain for the event, including efforts to secure the official endorsement of the International Ice Hockey Federation for a tournament sponsored by the Government of Canada in exchange for Canada’s return to international competition in 1977; the participation of various countries and their respective hockey governing bodies, especially the Soviet Union, in an international tournament featuring professional players; and an agreement with the North American professional hockey cartels, especially the National Hockey League, to allow star players to participate in the event. The success of the 1976 Canada Cup accelerated the commodification and commercialization of hockey both in North America and globally—a process that was increasingly driven by the interests and aspirations of the National Hockey League. At the center of this history is one increasingly powerful—and avaricious—character: Alan Eagleson.

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Cheryl Cooky