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Yonghwan Chang, Daniel L. Wann and Yuhei Inoue

’ identification with a specific team or team identification (team ID). In other words, those who have a stronger team ID (i.e., individuals perceive themselves as fans of the team and view the team as a representation of themselves; Branscombe & Wann, 1992 ) are more likely to experience the state of being in

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Wonseok Jang, Yong Jae Ko, Daniel L. Wann and Daehwan Kim

level of team identification, and the amount of energy that spectators gain is expected to determine their levels of happiness. Furthermore, this study proposed that the effect of team identification on spectators’ happiness would be moderated by game outcome (winning vs. losing). Specifically, we

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Ben Larkin and Janet S. Fink

Team identification—loosely defined as a psychological connection to a sport team ( Wann, 2006 )—has been covered extensively in sport management literature. For example, a wealth of research has been put into understanding both the outcomes of team identification (e.g.,  Branscombe & Wann, 1992

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Harry H. Kwon, Galen Trail and Jeffrey D. James

The purpose of this study was to investigate the potential mediating effect of perceived value in the relationship between team identification and intent to purchase collegiate team-licensed apparel. Direct effect, partially mediated, and fully mediated models were compared. The respondents were students (N = 110) attending a large university in the southeastern United States. Participants first completed the Team Identification Scale and then viewed a slide depicting an article of licensed merchandise (t-shirt). Participants next completed the Perceived Value and Purchase Intention Scales. Goodness-of-fit statistics indicated that the direct effect model did not fit the data. The partially mediated and the fully mediated models fit equally well; the latter was more parsimonious and thus was chosen for further analysis. Team identification explained 13.2% of the variance in perceived value; perceived value explained 42.6% of the variance in purchase intentions. The findings indicate that team identification alone did not drive the purchase intentions in this study; it is important to take into account the perceived value of the team-licensed merchandise.

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Matthew Katz and Bob Heere

The authors examined the longitudinal development of team identification among stakeholders of a newly formed intercollegiate football team to empirically measure the impact of a new football team on university identification. Using a multidimensional approach to identification, data were collected over a 3-year period and analyzed using growth curve analysis to determine the changes and trajectories of the individual dimensions of identification related to both the new football team and the larger university. Conditional growth models were used to determine the percentage of change in university identification explained by changes in team identification—to test whether new team identification drives identification with the larger university. The presented findings allow for an improved understanding of the psychological impact of a new football team for the university community by using growth curve analysis, which provides a more detailed and accurate empirical examination of identification, rather than traditional two-wave cross-lagged designs. Implications of the longitudinal nature of identification and the psychological value of a new football team for the university are discussed.

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Daniel Lock, Daniel C. Funk, Jason P. Doyle and Heath McDonald

The propensity of strongly identified fans to contribute positive organizational outcomes for sport teams underpins why team identification maintains a central position in sport management. In the current study we examine the multidimensional structure, stability, and interrelationships between the dimensions of team identification, using longitudinal data (April 2011–April 2012) collected from fans of a new Australian Rules football team (N = 602). A Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA) of the team identification items included (measured using the Team*ID scale), supported a five-dimensional model structure. This model was subsequently computed as a longitudinal CFA to test the configural and metric invariance of the Team*ID scale. We used a cross-lagged panel model to examine the longitudinal stability of, and interrelationships between, the dimensions: affect, behavioral involvement, cognitive awareness, private evaluation, and public evaluation. Each dimension displayed relative stability over time. In addition, public evaluation and private evaluation in April 2011 displayed a positive relationship with behavioral involvement in April 2012. Similarly, cognitive awareness in April 2011 predicted increases in public evaluation in April 2012. We conclude with implications for theory and practice.

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Elizabeth B. Delia

identification often translate into positive behavioral outcomes for sport entities themselves ( Lock & Heere, 2017 ). Despite the benefits of team identification for fans and the sport entities they identify with, there are also negative consequences of team identification. Negative consequences of team

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Dae Hee Kwak, Yu Kyoum Kim and Matthew H. Zimmerman

Despite the growing interest in social media and user-generated content, both academics and practitioners are struggling to understand the value and consequences of social media (e.g., blogs). This study employed a 2 (media source: mainstream/ social media) × 2 (message valence: positive/negative) × 2 (team identification: high/low) between-subjects design on source credibility and attitude toward an article. Positive and negative messages about the university’s varsity men’s basketball team were presented in either the mainstream media (sport magazine) or a user-generated format (blog). The results revealed that message valence had a significant main impact on triggering biased source evaluation and attitude toward the message. In turn, media source had a significant main effect on source expertise, but no main effects were found for trustworthiness and attitude. Team identification moderated the effect of media source on cognitive processing, suggesting that highly identified fans evaluated mainstream content more favorably, whereas less identified fans preferred user-generated content.

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Robert Madrigal and Johnny Chen

Fans’ causal attributions for a game outcome refer to their assessments of the underlying reasons for why things turned out as they did. We investigate the extent to which team identification moderates fans’ attributional responses to a game outcome so as to produce a self-serving bias that favors the preferred team. Also explored is the ability of team identification to mediate the effect of attributions on the summary judgments of basking in reflected glory (BIRG) and satisfaction with the team’s performance. Consistent with a self-serving bias, we found that highly identified fans were more likely to attribute a winning effort to stable and internal causes than were lowly identified fans. Moreover, the extremity of response between winners and losers was greater among highly identified fans than lowly identified fans. Team identification was also found to mediate the influence of (a) stability on BIRGing and (b) internal control on BIRGing. No such mediation effects were observed in the case of satisfaction. Managerial implications are discussed.

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Janet S. Fink, Heidi M. Parker, Martin Brett and Julie Higgins

In the current article, we extend the literature on fan identification and social identity theory by examining the effects of unscrupulous off-field behaviors of athletes. In doing so, we drew from both social identity theory and Heider’s balance theory to hypothesize a significant interaction between fan identification level and leadership response on fans’ subsequent levels of identification. An experimental study was performed and a 2 (high, low identification) × 2 (weak, strong leadership response) ANOVA was conducted with the pre to post difference score in team identification as the dependent variable. There was a significant interaction effect (F (2, 80) = 23.71, p < .001) which explained 23% of the variance in the difference between prepost test scores. The results provide evidence that unscrupulous acts by athletes off the field of play can impact levels of team identification, particularly for highly identified fans exposed to a weak leadership response. The results are discussed relative to appropriate theory. Practical implications and suggestions for future research are also forwarded.