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Chris Knoester and Theo Randolph

Using Fragile Families data (N = 2,581), this study analyzes father’s engagement in sports and outdoor activities with their nine year-old child. It also considers the implications of these interactions for health and father-child relationships. First, the results indicate patterns of relatively high levels of father engagement. Most fathers reported doing sports or outdoor activities with their child once per week or more. Second, the results show socioeconomic, gender, and family structure discrepancies in the likelihood that fathers engage in sports or outdoor activities with their child. Finally, the findings reveal that father-child interactions in sports and outdoor activities are positively associated with reports of health and father-child closeness, for both fathers and children. Thus, it seems that father-child interactions in sports and outdoor activities can serve as purposive forms of leisure that can have positive effects for health and relationships.

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Andrew Hammond, Ruth Jeanes, Dawn Penney and Deana Leahy

In this study, semi-structured interviews were conducted with eight Victorian swimming coaches to examine the discourses of disability1 and inclusion that they expressed in relation to their current coaching practices. Analysis specifically pursued links between neoliberalism, ableism, elitism, classification and inclusion in coaching, with the intention of exploring what discourse relations are possible, imaginable and practical within what have been referred to as neoliberal-ableist times. Findings reveal that coaches replicate and reproduce elitist, ableist assumptions about the body and sport. The discussion prompts a consideration of how rationalities and techniques of inclusion are limited under the prevailing political context.

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Sitong Guo, Andrew C. Billings and James C. Abdallah

This study investigated how LeBron James’s free-agency decision in 2018 influences sport fans’ image impressions of him with in-groups (Cleveland Cavaliers) and out-groups (all other NBA teams) compared. In the months preceding James’s free-agency decision, an experimental design was employed to ask self-ascribed fans of LeBron James how they felt about 4 possible free-agency destinations: the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Houston Rockets, the Golden State Warriors, and his eventual selection, the Los Angeles Lakers. A total of 189 U.S. fans of LeBron James were recruited for the study. Results indicate that James’s image became worse (in terms of mean scores) for every out-group condition, while being slightly improved if opting to remain in the in-group; however, images were significantly different from other out-groups in the scenario in which LeBron James opted to join the Golden State Warriors—the Cavaliers most immediate rival at the time.

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Dustin A. Hahn

While many sport fans gravitate to new media, questions remain regarding what they are consuming. Specifically, this study addresses a nascent gap in sport communication research by identifying the presentation form and subject portrayals of 443 Instagram posts during 2018 college basketball tournaments and measuring subsequent likability of such depictions. Results yield 4 important findings. Primarily, in contrast to early exemplification research, evidence suggests that some audiences “like” base-rate information. In addition, while Instagram is known as a photo platform, posts in this population were most often videos, and memes were liked more than any other presentation form. Next, while this content analysis identifies an old problem in a new domain—that female athletes are shunned in favor of male athletes—it demonstrates that likability in this medium emerges as equal for male and female subjects and sports. Finally, related to subject demographics, findings demonstrated racial disparities and concerning statistics for likability of minority subjects. Implications for exemplification theory and social media producers in sport are discussed along with limitations and directions for future research in this burgeoning arena.

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Patrick McAvoy and Taesoo Ahn

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Ken Payne and Curtis Edge

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Adam J. White, Stefan Robinson, Eric Anderson, Rachael Bullingham, Allyson Pollock and Ryan Scoats

Diversity and representation in sport governing bodies has become an issue for both public discussion and academic debate in recent times. Previous work has primarily centered on gender inequalities within the forever changing masculine terrain of sport. However, no work has yet examined the representation and participation of young people in the decision-making structures of sporting bodies. This paper holds up England’s Rugby Union for organizational analysis, using the notion of homologous reproduction as a heuristic framework. In doing so, it explores the reproduction of this governing body for the systematic exclusion of young people in decision-making processes over the last few decades. This framework is then twined with Article 11 of the United Nation’s Convention for the Rights of the Child, to make the case that the RFU desires homologous reproduction in order to avoid dealing with what youth are currently concerned with –head injuries. Given such a high proportion of rugby’s participants being under twenty-five years of age, we conclude the lack of young people within the decision-making process represents a form of willful discrimination.

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Mark Dottori, Guy Faulkner, Ryan Rhodes, Norm O’Reilly, Leigh Vanderloo and Gashaw Abeza

This study explored the frame-setting and frame-sending process of media who reported on the 2015 ParticipACTION Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth. Through the use of a case-study method employing a sequential explanatory mixed-methods approach (content analysis followed by semistructured interviews), the findings revealed a high level of frame-sending characteristics by the media, and the framing of stories was found to be influencing the message being sent, making it different from the original messaging sent by public relations practitioners charged with dispersing information. Theoretical and practical contributions are discussed along with suggestions for future studies.

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Clayton R. Kuklick and Brian T. Gearity

Sociologists of sport and coaching have repeatedly drawn upon the theoretical tools of Michel Foucault to map and critique the negative effects of coaches’ use of disciplinary practices. Three SCCs and two coach developers participated in multiple learning community meetings interrogating Foucault’s concepts to understand how power moves, create new, less disciplinary practices, and address the problems produced by too much discipline. The findings present new conceptual tools to train and move differently by disrupting disciplinary practices: spasmodic tempo training, atemporal training, variable geographic training, variable intra-geographic training, fluid and fragmented periodization, explorative coaching, and strength coach as sage. We call for an appreciation of poststructural informed sport coaching and the development of a discursive sociology of sport coaching praxis.

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Jamie Cleland, Keith Parry and David Radford

This article presents the findings of 2,415 posts collected from two prominent Australian Football League message boards that responded to a racist incident involving a banana being thrown at Adelaide Crows player, Eddie Betts, in August 2016. It adopts Bourdieu’s concept of habitus to examine the online practice of fans for evidence of racist discourse and the extent to which this was supported or contested by fellow fans. The overall findings are that online debates about race in Australian Rules Football and wider Australian society remain divided, with some posters continuing to reflect racial prejudice and discrimination towards non-whites. However, for the vast majority, views deemed to have racist connotations are contested and challenged in a presentation centering on social change and racial equality.