An Exploratory Study of Black Male College Athletes' Perceptions on Race and Athlete Activism

by John N. Singer; Joshua DeLorme; Kwame Agyemang

Jul 1, 2010

The authors conducted a quantitative study of six black male athletes at American universities. Using the intellectual paradigm of critical race theory, they analyze the athletes' views on race and the role of athlete activism in their generation.
  • The black male athletes in the study perceived racist ideologies as continuing to be a factor in limiting their opportunities.
  • They were knowledgeable on the history of black athlete activists in the U.S. and showed appreciation for these figures, contrary to the view that today's black athletes are ignorant of racial struggles of the past.
  • Black male athletes who participated in activist movements decades ago asserted that today's athletes are more caught up in their sport, more interested in money and worried about losing contracts by speaking out, and/or more prone to feeling entitled.
  • Participants felt that they had a responsibility to engage in activism.