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Jeffrey Graham and Sylvia Trendafilova

This case challenges future sport managers to consider the importance of organizational structure and the impact structure has on job performance and motivation. In the case, students are presented with a university ticket sales department with a traditionally tall bureaucratic organizational structure. In 2014, the department struggled with poor performance, high turnover, and low levels of employee morale. However, the department took drastic steps and adopted an organizational structure that is based on the idea of self-managed teams. Now in 2016 the department is undergoing a thorough evaluation to see whether the organizational change made two years ago has had a positive impact. Even though the case uses a fictional university (i.e., Western Field University), the issues and challenges involved in changing an organizational structure, motivating employees, and leading change stem from real-world situations. The case contains ticket sales data, employee turnover information, and sample quotes from employees that aid in the analysis. This case is intended for use in human resource management classes, but it also has implications for organizational behavior or leadership courses.

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Jeffrey J. Chu and Graham E. Caldwell

Studies on shock attenuation during running have induced alterations in impact loading by imposing kinematic constraints, e.g., stride length changes. The role of shock attenuation mechanisms has been shown using mass-spring-damper (MSD) models, with spring stiffness related to impact shock dissipation. The present study altered the magnitude of impact loading by changing downhill surface grade, thus allowing runners to choose their own preferred kinematic patterns. We hypothesized that increasing downhill grade would cause concomitant increases in both impact shock and shock attenuation, and that MSD model stiffness values would reflect these increases. Ten experienced runners ran at 4.17 m/s on a treadmill at surface grades of 0% (level) to 12% downhill. Accelerometers were placed on the tibia and head, and reflective markers were used to register segmental kinematics. An MSD model was used in conjunction with head and tibial accelerations to determine head/arm/trunk center of mass (HATCOM) stiffness (K1), and lower extremity (LEGCOM) stiffness (K2) and damping (C). Participants responded to increases in downhill grade in one of two ways. Group LowSA had lower peak tibial accelerations but greater peak head accelerations than Group HighSA, and thus had lower shock attenuation. LowSA also showed greater joint extension at heelstrike, higher HATCOM heelstrike velocity, reduced K1 stiffness, and decreased damping than HighSA. The differences between groups were exaggerated at the steeper downhill grades. The separate responses may be due to conflicts between the requirements of controlling HATCOM kinematics and shock attenuation. LowSA needed greater joint extension to resist their higher HATCOM heelstrike velocities, but a consequence of this strategy was the reduced ability to attenuate shock with the lower extremity joints during early stance. With lower HATCOM impact velocities, the HighSA runners were able to adopt a strategy that gave more control of shock attenuation, especially at the steepest grades.

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Jeffrey A. Graham and Marlene A. Dixon

Work–family balance in sport has until this point largely been characterized as an issue for women. Current societal trends, however, suggest that men also struggle with balancing work and family responsibilities. Using theoretical frameworks from both conflict and enrichment, this study examined the ways that fathers who are coaches experience and manage the work–life interface. Twenty-four men who are fathers and high school varsity head coaches were interviewed for this study. The respondents discussed the day-to-day challenges and coping strategies they utilized to manage their work–life interface. Ultimately, five themes emerged from the data, including (a) coaching as more than an occupation, (b) experiences of conflict and strain, (c) coping strategies, (d) nonutilization of organizational supports, and (e) experiences of enrichment. These findings suggest that, indeed, men struggle with balancing competing role demands. However, the findings also suggest that men are utilizing diverse and creative approaches for managing their fathering and coaching roles, resulting in meaningful experiences of enrichment stemming from both coaching and fathering.

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Jeffrey D. Graham and Steven R. Bray

The purpose of this study was to investigate the role of task self-efficacy as a psychological factor involved in the relationship between self-control depletion and physical endurance. Participants (N = 37) completed two isometric handgrip endurance trials, separated by a Stroop task, which was either congruent (control) or incongruent (causing depletion). Task self-efficacy for the second endurance trial was measured following the Stroop task. Participants in the depletion condition reported lower task self-efficacy and showed a greater reduction in performance on the second endurance trial when compared with controls. Task self-efficacy also mediated the relationship between self-control depletion and endurance performance. The results of this study provide evidence that task self-efficacy is negatively affected following self-control depletion. We recommend that task self-efficacy be further investigated as a psychological factor accounting for the negative change in self-control performance of physical endurance and sport tasks following self-control strength depletion.

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Jeffrey Graham, Allison Smith and Sylvia Trendafilova

Craig Johnson is an associate athletic director for marketing and promotions in an athletic department at the collegiate level. Through conversation, he has recently realized that the graduate students working in his department as interns and graduate assistants feel that balancing work, school, and a personal life is impossible. As a mentor for working in sport, as well as their direct manager, he feels something must be done to assist these graduate students in managing the work–life interface, but is unsure where to start. Drawing from research in sport management and from the general management literature, the case gives insight into the issues, outcomes, and theories that inform the work–life interface. Undergraduate and graduate students in human resource management or organizational behavior courses who work through this case will have an opportunity to contemplate, discuss, and develop strategies for managing the issues surrounding balancing work and a personal life.

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Jeffrey A. Graham, Marlene A. Dixon and Nancy Hazen-Swann

Youth sport organizations traditionally have focused their concern on training parents in sport and coaching skills, but have largely ignored their parent role. However, an increasing body of work exploring the phenomenon of fathering through sport has highlighted the need for youth sport organizations to become aware of and understand the dual roles of father and coach/volunteer and the potential impact on the participant and the sport organization of using sport as a site and mechanism for fathering (Kay, 2009; Messner, 2009). The purpose of this article is to examine recent literature about the ways—both positive and negative—that fathers use sport as a way to fulfill fatherhood responsibilities and the implications for sport management scholars and practitioners, particularly in voluntary youth sport organizations.

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Jeffrey A. Graham, Robin L. Hardin and James Bemiller

The News-Sentinel Open presented by Pilot is an event on the Web.com Tour. The Web.com Tour began in 1990 with the name of the Ben Hogan Tour and has transitioned through several title sponsors, taking its current name in June 2012. The tour is the developmental tour for the PGA Tour and the primary means for professional golfers to earn playing privileges on the PGA Tour. Tournaments are 72-hole stroke play events featuring between 144 and 156 golfers. This specific tournament is staged in Knoxville, Tennessee, and is one of only three original tour stops from the inaugural season in 1990. In an effort to measure economic impact in the greater Knoxville area resulting from the tournament weekend, the News-Sentinel Open has commissioned an economic impact study. This case study challenges students to analyze data collected from the economic impact study commissioned by the tour organizers. By engaging with this case study, and its accompanying data and results, students will gain insight into best practices of planning, conducting, and analyzing an ethical economic impact study.

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Tuyen Le, Jeffrey D. Graham, Sara King-Dowling and John Cairney

This study examined the effects of perceptions of motor abilities on aerobic and musculoskeletal exercise performance in young children at risk for developmental coordination disorder (rDCD). The participants (N = 539) were part of a larger cohort study, the Coordination and Activity Tracking in Children (CATCH) study. The Movement Assessment Battery for Children (2nd Edition) was used to determine rDCD children. Perceptions of motor abilities were measured by the Perceived Efficacy and Goals Setting system. Aerobic exercise performance was measured using the Bruce Protocol treadmill test, and musculoskeletal exercise performance was assessed using the standing long jump and the Wingate Anaerobic test. The rDCD children reported lower Perceived Efficacy and Goals Setting scores and performed worse on all exercise performance measures. Perceptions of ability also mediated the relationship between developmental coordination disorder and each exercise performance test. It is concerning that children with low motor coordination report lower perceptions of ability even at a very young age.

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Kira L. Innes, Jeffrey D. Graham and Steven R. Bray

Social interactions are theorized to inform relation-inferred self-efficacy (RISE), which, in turn, may influence self-efficacy and behavior. This study investigated the effects of peer encouragement on RISE, task self-efficacy, and physical performance. Children (N = 84) were assigned to dyads and randomized to provide peer encouragement to one another or not (control group). Participants completed two endurance handgrip trials, separated by a cognitively demanding task intended to induce mental fatigue and increase the salience of the peer encouragement manipulation. Participants in the experimental group exchanged words of encouragement prior to the second endurance trial, whereas those in the control group did not. The peer encouragement group reported higher RISE and showed increased performance across trials compared with controls. Providing peer encouragement prior to a challenging physical task was associated with more positive RISE perceptions and improved physical performance.

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Shaina M. Dabbs, Jeffrey A. Graham and Marlene A. Dixon

Today’s workforce, with trends toward aging and greater gender diversity, looks dramatically different than past decades, creating a need to more closely examine the midcareer stages of employees. In sport, midcareer head coaches have developed a broad skill set and an ability to manage both internal and external stakeholders. Thus, they are valuable, experienced employees who have successfully navigated the coaching profession. Using the Kaleidoscope Career Model as a framework, this study explored male and female head coaches’ career experiences, needs, and management strategies in the midcareer stages. The findings indicate that coaches follow an alpha career pattern, prioritizing authenticity over balance and challenge. Yet, the participants suggested different approaches to achieving authenticity, balance, and challenge within the midcareer stages, which may be more nuanced than traditionally expected. Understanding these needs and management strategies are a necessary first step toward more nuanced theoretical understandings and customized human resource management plans that will enhance career longevity and performance.