Abstract

The media serves as an extremely important source for many Americans to get information. Mediated sports are extremely popular in today’s society, and commercial sports even have more influence over the press than daily news. The relationship between sports and the media can be seen as a type of partnership (Stead, 2002). When it comes to sporting events, viewers become extremely invested in the games and the athletes that they are watching. Many athletes are forced to give interviews right before games or after heartbreaking loses whether they want to or not. Despite how often sporting events and athlete interviews are on television, there is hardly any research or information as to how the athlete’s feel regarding dealing with the media. This paper attempts to give collegiate softball players an opportunity to share how they construct the role of the media in their sport. I chose softball because of my background of being a collegiate softball player. I conducted in-depth phone interviews with each one of my participants. Each participant was a member of a Power Five Division I softball team (University of Arizona, University of Iowa, Oregon State University, or UCLA). Through the data collection from these interviews I was able to uncover that these athletes all believe athletes have a duty to cooperate with media, won’t cooperate fully with media if they feel violated, journalist have a code of ethics even if it is not always followed, and that athletes should be held to higher standards than other people who deal with the media.

Advisor

Amanda Paule-Koba

Second Reader

Ray Schneider

Semester

Spring

Year

2017

Degree

M.Ed.

Program

Sport Administration

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