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Gregg Bennett

The purpose of this study was to describe the participation styles of students enrolled in two basic instruction weight training classes. The students’ participation styles fell somewhere on a continuum between slackin’ and sweatin’. Through the use of class observations and interviews with the students and the instructors, six styles of participation were identified within both of these categories. Four participation styles were revealed in the slackin’ category. These were (a) socializers, (b) manipulators, (c) underachievers, and (d) minimalists. The two styles identified in the sweatin’ category were (a) sidekicks and (b) ex-athletes. The transtheoretical model for behavior modification was used to describe the students’ activity levels in the classes and predict exercise adherence among the twelve participants. Further in-depth studies are needed to assess the state of basic instruction program classes within individual programs and classes throughout the nation.

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Lane Wakefield and Gregg Bennett

Virtual fan communities (VFC) have become very popular among fans of sports teams. A VFC provides an online place for fans to meet and discuss the team, consume media, and develop friendships. Students will learn, in this case study, how to use partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM) to assess fan attitudes toward the VFC and sponsors of the firm. Students will also learn how sport organizations can benefit from leadership with statistical know-how. The case is fictional, but it is based on an actual research study conducted in conjunction with a prominent virtual fan community in which ownership had an interest in fans’ attitudes toward their service.

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Kevin Gwinner and Gregg Bennett

This investigation analyzed the effects of sport identification and brand cohesiveness as predictors of brand fit in a unique sponsorship context by examining consumer responses to event sponsorships of the Dew Action Sports Tour. An additional focus of this research endeavor assessed the impact of brand fit on two important consumer behavioral outcomes: attitude toward sponsors and purchase intentions. Data were collected from 552 attendees at the Louisville, Kentucky stop of the Dew Action Sports Tour. The results of the study support our hypotheses that fit impacts attitude toward the sponsor which has a positive influence on consumer’s purchase intentions. The examination of influence that brand cohesiveness and sport identification have on fit perceptions extends our theoretical understanding of fit in a sponsorship context as up until now, research in this area has focused almost exclusively on outcomes of fit and not on those variables that might influence fit.

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Gregg Bennett, Khalid Ballouli and Jason Sosa

The purpose of this investigation was to assess the effectiveness of a sport management student exchange program. During a summer semester, Wilson University1 faculty hosted a 39-day exchange and study tour made possible due to funding from the U.S. Department of State’s Fusion Arts Exchange program. The theme of the program, the American Sports Brand, was based on an original model focused on creating a deeper understanding of U.S. society, culture, and values among a multinational group of students through an intensive study of the formation, development, and business practices of the American Sports Brand. Participants included 15 international students and five American undergraduate students. A mixed methodological framework was used to examine student learning, perceptions, and experiences. Findings indicate that the exchange was perceived as “sometimes good, sometimes not so good” by the participants. Implications of the findings and suggestions for future research are discussed.

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Gregg Bennett, Robin K. Henson and James Zhang

The rise in consumer and corporate interest in action sports, also known as extreme sports, has been phenomenal. The apparent popularity of action sports, when combined with the sponsorships, endorsements, and advertising dollars they have quickly garnered, lends itself to scientific inquiry regarding the level and nature of public interest. The purpose of this study was to examine Generation Y's perceptions of action sports, with a specific focus on the expressed popularity of action sports and the relationship between action sports interest and use of the media. The 39-item Action Sports Questionnaire (ESQ) was constructed to examine Generation Y perceptions of action sports, sports related viewing preferences, and sports related media usage among middle and high school aged students. The present findings suggested that these members of the Generation Y (n = 367) niche market preferred action sports over the traditional sports of basketball and baseball. Respondents also indicated stronger preference for soccer, but would prefer to watch the X-Games over the World Cup. There is an indication that soccer and action sports are more popular among the younger generation than some traditional team sports. Males were slightly more supportive that action sports would become more popular in the future, and the male respondents were likewise more familiar with action sports. More members of Generation Y watch action sports than their predecessors, and they likewise tend to be optimistic about the future of action sports if they watch events on television.

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Yosuke Tsuji, Gregg Bennett and James H. Leigh

The purpose of this study was to investigate factors affecting brand awareness of virtual advertising in sports. Specifically, the study tested the effects of animation, repetition, baseball involvement, and team identification. An experiment using two Latin square designs was conducted to assess the effects of these factors on awareness levels. Results indicated no effect of animation, while effects of repetition, baseball involvement, and team identification were found to affect viewers’ cognitive responses. Managerial implications, limitations, and future research are discussed.

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Mauricio Ferreira, Todd K. Hall and Gregg Bennett

In this study, we used correspondence analysis (Greenacre, 1984; Hoffman & Franke, 1986) to examine connections between the title sponsor, brand competitors, and consumer targets exposed to a sponsorship. Demographic characteristics and self-reported use of 20 soft drink brands were collected from 1,138 attendees of four of the five inaugural events of the Dew Action Sports Tour. The analyses consisted of decomposing the cross-tabulated data into latent dimensions and graphically portraying brands and consumer targets in joint preference maps. Results revealed that consumers differentiated the 20 soft drink brands based on two latent dimensions: energy/diet and convenience. Furthermore, based on proximity of the target market to the title sponsor in the maps, it appears that Mountain Dew has been relatively effective in positioning the brand for key target markets in only one of the four cities examined. Theoretical and managerial implications of the findings are discussed.