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George B. Cunningham and Janet S. Fink

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Astin D. Steward and George B. Cunningham

Across two experimental studies, the purpose of this research project was to examine how Whites evaluate African Americans with a strong racial identity. In Study 1, participants evaluated applicants for an athletic director position. Relative to their weakly identified counterparts, applicants believed to possess a strong racial identity were rated as a poorer fit for the job. Results from Study 2, which was also set within the context of hiring an athletic director, show that participant social dominance orientation moderates the relationship between racial identity and subsequent evaluations. The authors discuss theoretical and practical implications, limitations, and future directions.

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George B. Cunningham, Jennifer E. Bruening, and Thomas Straub

The purpose of this study was to examine factors that contribute to the under representation of African Americans in head coaching positions. In Study 1, qualitative data were collected from assistant football (n = 41) and men’s basketball (n = 16) coaches to examine why coaches sought head coaching positions, barriers to obtaining such positions, and reasons for leaving the coaching profession. In Study 2, assistant football (n = 259) and men’s basketball coaches (n = 114) completed a questionnaire developed from Study 1. Results indicate that although there were no differences in desire to become a head coach, African Americans, relative to Whites, perceived race and opportunity as limiting their ability to obtain a head coaching position and had greater occupational turnover intentions. Context moderated the latter results, as the effects were stronger for African American football coaches than they were for African American basketball coaches. Results have practical implications for the advancement of African American football coaches into head coaching roles.

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George B. Cunningham, Melanie L. Sartore, and Brian P. McCullough

The purpose of this study was to examine the influence of job applicant sexual orientation on subsequent evaluations and hiring recommendations. Data were gathered from 106 students (48 men, 57 women) who participated in a 2 (applicant sexual orientation: heterosexual, sexual minority) × 2 (rater gender: female, male) × 2 (applicant gender: female, male) experiment related to the hiring of a personal trainer for a fitness organization. Analysis of variance indicated that sexual minority job applicants received poorer evaluations than did heterosexuals. These effects were moderated by the rater gender, as men provided harsher ratings of sexual minorities than did women. Finally, applicant ratings were reliably related to hiring recommendations. Results are discussed in terms of contributions to the literature, limitations, and future directions.

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Janet S. Fink, George B. Cunningham, and Linda Jean Kensicki

This study drew from the match-up hypothesis and associated learning theory to examine the effects of athlete attractiveness and athlete expertise on (a) endorser-event fit, (b) attitudes toward an event, and (c) intentions to purchase tickets to an event. Students (N = 173) from three universities participated in an experiment to test the study’s hypotheses. Results indicate that athlete attractiveness and athlete expertise were both positively related to endorser-event fit and the effects of expertise on fit were significantly stronger than those of attractiveness. Further, attitudes toward the event partially mediated the relationship between endorser-event fit and intentions to purchase tickets to the event, whereas identification moderated the relationship. Results are discussed relative to associative learning theory and the match-up hypothesis, as well as ramifications they present for marketers and promoters of women’s sport.

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George B. Cunningham, Risa Isard, and E. Nicole Melton

Questions about transgender individuals’ place in sport persist. Therefore, the purpose of this paper was to focus on transgender inclusion in sport. Drawing from varied perspectives, the authors present five reasons for inclusion, basing their arguments on sport as a human right, fairness, gendered notions of athleticism, well-being, and economics. The authors then present a multilevel model for including transgender athletes, coaches, and administrators in sport, identifying factors at the macro-, meso-, and micro-levels of analysis.

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George B. Cunningham, Janet S. Fink, and James J. Zhang

Four decades have passed since the publication of Perspectives on the Academic Discipline of Physical Education: A Tribute to G. Lawrence Rarick—an edited text that offered a comprehensive overview of the field at the time. Missing, however, was any discussion of sport management. Therefore, the purpose of this paper was to overview sport management and the development of the field since the publication of Brooks’s edited text. The authors summarize events in the field, including those related to educational advances and professional societies. Next, they highlight theoretical advances and then review the research in the field over time. In doing so, they categorize the scholarship into three groups: Young Field, Enduring Questions, and Emerging Trends. The authors conclude by identifying advances in the field and how sport management has emerged as a distinctive, robust discipline.

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George B. Cunningham, Janet S. Fink, and Michael Sagas

The purpose of this study was to further examine the utility of Mitchell, Holtom, Lee, Sablynski, and Erez’s (2001) job embeddedness construct. The authors tested a revised version of their original multi-item scale, as well as a new global-item measure. Data were gathered from two independent samples (intercollegiate softball coaches, n = 214, and athletic department employees, n = 189). Results from both studies provide the strongest support for the global-item measure. The convergent, discriminant, and predictive validity of the measure was established. Results demonstrate the efficacy of the job embeddedness construct in explaining why people choose to stay in their organizations.

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Elizabeth B. Delia, E. Nicole Melton, Katherine Sveinson, George B. Cunningham, and Daniel Lock

Sport consumer behavior researchers have developed a robust understanding of how and why people consume sport, and the consequences of consumption. There has been little reflection, however, on the settings or populations used to study consumers and develop theory. In acknowledging the importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion to advance both theory and practice, the authors conducted a scoping review of diversity in sport consumer behavior research, focusing on four sport management journals. The review revealed a widespread lack of diversity, with most studies focusing on men’s sport in highly commercialized settings. Furthermore, study participants often identify as White men, middle-aged or young, educated, and with at least some disposable income. Leveraging an institutional work lens, the authors address taken-for-granted norms that may have contributed to these trends and propose solutions.

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Jon Welty Peachey, Jennifer Bruening, Alexis Lyras, Adam Cohen, and George B. Cunningham

Much sport-for-development (SFD) research has focused on the impact initiatives have on participants, and not on other stakeholders such as volunteers. Some research suggests volunteerism enables social capital gains, while other scholars have been skeptical, with even less known about how volunteers are impacted by working for SFD events rather than for ongoing programs. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate how, if at all, a large, multinational SFD event contributed to social capital development of volunteers. Findings revealed volunteers experienced social capital development through building relationships, learning, and enhanced motivation to work for social change and reciprocity. As very little research has examined the efficacy of SFD events in contributing to social capital development, the findings extend the literature on SFD events. It would be prudent for SFD events to target programming to impact the experience of volunteers to retain them and contribute to social capital development.