Masters of Education in Human Movement Sport and Leisure Studies Graduate Projects

Abstract

Context: Recruiting elite athletes to commit to a university athletic program is paramount in the success of any athletic department; in turn this has the potential to increase overall revenue and notoriety to the institution. Athletic facilities may have a significant role on an athlete’s selection process. Objective: To examine the impact sporting facilities have on the recruitment of Division I athletes. Design: Cross-sectional, descriptive study. Setting: Division I athletic program. Participants: 67 varsity athletes from 14 different teams. Intervention: A descriptive survey instrument was developed to identify the athlete’s top ten reasons they chose to attend/play for BGSU. Popular reasons listed were based on top five results of previous research. Main Outcome Measures: Dependent variables (athlete’s rankings about and identification on why they selected their current institution), included nominal data choices (i.e., male/female, scholarship status, etc.). Results: Most important college choice factors from the whole group are: (1) head coach personality/philosophy, (2) degree options, (3) size of the university, (4) academic support services, (5) sporting facilities, (6) location of the university, (7) perceived opportunity to play immediately, (8) financial aid, (9) traditions and (10) perceived future playing opportunities. An independent t-test was used to examine differences between male’s and female’s rank of facilities. Males (n=9) had a M=6.44±1.87. Females (n=28) had a M=5.14±2.04. One-way ANOVA was used to examine differences between the academic level of the athletes and where they ranked facilities in their top ten. Freshman (n=15) had a M=5.40±1.72. Sophomores (n=7) had a M=5.85±2.03. Juniors (n=4) had a M=6.50±1.73. Seniors (n=8) had a M=5.37±2.87. Graduate students (n=2) had a M=3.00±1.41. Cronbach’s α=.712 for this survey. Conclusion: The data reiterates the importance of having the best facilities possible in order to attract the best athletic talent to your institution. Practical Application: Recognizing there are many reasons athletes choose a university can better prepare athletic departments to recruit future athletes. By examining the reasons Division I athletes chose to play for a university we can expand our understanding of how young athletes prioritize important life choices.

Advisor

Matthew Kutz

Second Reader

Ray Schneider

Semester

Spring

Year

2016

Degree

M.Ed.

Program

Sport Administration

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