Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department


Major Professor

Susan D. Greenbaum, Ph.D.

Committee Member

S. Elizabeth Bird, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Cheryl R. Rodriguez, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Antoinette Jackson, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Wil Tyson, Ph.D.


American Football, Florida, Male Identity Construction, Sport Participation, Education


This dissertation explores the culture of sport among African American male football players as well as African American perspectives on sport and success. A case study of six African American, Division 1 FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision) collegiate student athletes was conducted along with seventeen supplemental interviews with community members, parents, coaches and former athletes and fans. The participants answered questions that explored education, success, identity construction, ethnicity and sport. Archival data was also reviewed framing the discussion on football in Florida, links between education and sport participation and African American male academic achievement. While many perspectives varied, there were collective trends in relation to how African American Athletes in Florida define themselves as well as their perspectives on ethnicity and sport. The individual perspectives and collective trends are discussed in this dissertation.