Graduation Year


Document Type

Ed. Specalist



Degree Granting Department

Psychological and Social Foundations

Major Professor

Kathy Bradley-Klug, Ph.D.

Co-Major Professor

Rance Harbor, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Robert Dedrick, Ph.D.


alcohol use, drug use, athletic participation, adolescence, athletes


Substance use among high school students has become an increased concern for administrators, parents, and community members. Previous research has demonstrated relationships between adolescent substance use and numerous negative outcomes. This study investigated the relationship between athletic participation and substance use using self-report data from a sample of 139 high school students. Specifically, the current study examined the relationship between frequency and setting of participation in athletic activities (e.g., football, baseball, soccer) and multiple types of substance use (e.g., alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, other illicit drugs) in adolescents. The results of this study indicate that nonathletes reported significantly more marijuana use than athletes when gender, ethnicity, SES, and grade were controlled for in the analyses. Additionally, there was a significant relationship between students‟ grade and substance use. Specifically, 12

th grade students reported significantly higher rates of alcohol use than 10th grade students. Implications for school psychologists and directions for future research are presented.