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Jesse King and Robert Madrigal

Sport managers are often faced with a situation where they must activate an incongruent sponsorship in which the fit between a sponsor and property is not self-evident. Existing research has shown that consumers’ perceptions of fit enhance a sponsorship’s effectiveness. Therefore, the challenge is to explain how an otherwise incongruent sponsor and property are related to one another. The current research addresses this problem and considers analogy as a means for articulating an incongruent sponsorship. We find that analogical articulation offers distinct advantages over a more common method of articulating a sponsorship by describing how a property and sponsor’s consumer base overlap.

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Gashaw Abeza, Norm O’Reilly and Benoit Seguin

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Nola Agha and Marijke Taks

The role of residents in the calculation of economic impact remains a point of contention. It is unclear if changes in resident spending caused by an event contribute positively, negatively, or not at all. Building on previous theory, we develop a comprehensive model that explains all 72 possible behaviors of residents based on changes in (a) spending, (b) multiplier, (c) timing of expenditures, and (d) geographic location of spending. Applying the model to Super Bowl 50 indicates that few residents were affected and positive and negative effects were relatively equivalent; thus, their overall impact is negligible. This leaves practitioners the option to engage in the challenging process of gathering data on all four variables on all residents or to revert back to the old model of entirely excluding residents from economic impact. From a theoretical perspective, there is a pressing need to properly conceptualize the time variable in economic impact studies.

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Brian E. Pruegger

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Rachel Arnold, David Fletcher and Jennifer A. Hobson

In this study, the authors interviewed Olympic athletes about their perceptions of their leaders and managers, with a particular focus on perceptions of negatively valenced and socially undesirable characteristics and their effects. The results highlight five main dark characteristics: self-focused, haughty self-belief, inauthentic, manipulative, and success-obsessed. The findings also indicate negative effects of such characteristics (viz., performance and career threats, affected confidence, pressure and anxiety, and a lack of support) and positive effects of such characteristics (viz., motivation, resilience and coping skills, opportunities, and learning and awareness). Hence, it appears that not only are leaders and managers’ personalities “different shades of grey” but also the effects they have are too. The findings are discussed in relation to previous pertinent research, and with regard to their implications for policy development and future research.

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Joyce Olushola Ogunrinde

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Evan Frederick and Ann Pegoraro

The purpose of this case study was to determine what image-repair strategies the University of Louisville employed immediately after the announcement of an FBI investigation involving multiple universities and college coaches taking bribes in order to steer high-profile recruits to certain agents. Specifically, this case study examined the image-repair strategies used on the University of Louisville’s official Facebook page and the comments made to those posts to gauge public reaction to the university’s image-repair strategies. The University of Louisville primarily employed the image-repair strategies of transcendence, bolstering, stonewalling, and a newly identified strategy referred to as rallying, or unifying and “moving beyond” the scandal. Three themes emerged from an inductive analysis of users’ comments, including support, rejection, and scandal. The high volume of support indicates that many users were receptive to the university’s attempt to reduce the offensiveness of the scandal through the use of bolstering and transcendence.

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Mark Lowes and Christopher Robillard

This scholarly commentary draws on existing sport communication literature in an exploration of social media’s role in, and impact on, sport journalism practices and the production of sport news. Of particular concern is the emergence of a form of citizen sport journalism that usurps the traditional role of sport journalists as gatekeepers of the relationship between the sports world and its multitude of audiences. It is argued that social media are providing audiences with more opportunities to create the type of mediated discourses they want to experience by eliminating the scarcity of time and space that once privileged the gatekeeping status of sport journalists. Consequently, sport reporters are becoming social-media content creators and curators while competing against spectator sport-news content creators. Whereas these changes might have a negative connotation, the authors conclude that sport coverage in digital culture offers more opportunities for journalists to step outside the confines of traditional sport journalism work routines and news-production practices.