Deviance in Sports - Unified School District of De Pere

Deviance in Sports
I. Definitions of Norm
A. Behavioral expectations and cues within a
B. A standard of conduct that should or must be
C. A way of behaving typical of a certain group
D. A range of accepted actions, traits, or ideas
that are consistent with a societies values
Brainstorm Sport Norms
• Pick two groups from the following list and
write down the Norms.
• A Specific Sport? Athletes? Non-Athletes?
White? Black? Latino? Hispanic? European?
Male? Female? Elementary? Middle? High
School? College? Pro?
II. Norms of the Sport Ethic
A. Sport Ethic-A set of norms accepted as the
dominant criteria for defining what is required
and accepted as an athlete in power and
performance sports
1. An athlete is dedicated to “the game” above all other
2. An athlete strives for distinction
3. An athlete accepts risks and plays through pain
4. An athlete accepts no obstacles in the pursuit of
Which of the norms is Jay Cutler being
criticized for in the photo?
B. The norms of sport ethic are accepted in
cultures where it is important to be
dedicated, strive for improvement and make
sacrifices to pursue your dreams—Ex. United
III. Deviance
A. An action, trait or idea that falls outside the
range of acceptance as determined by people
with the power to enforce norms in a social
B. Underconformity-based on ignoring or rejecting
norms—leads to anarchy
C. Normal-commonly acceptable behavior
D. Overconformity- deviance based on accepting
and conforming to norms without question—
leads to fascism
IV. Deviance of the Sport Ethic
A. Many athletes overconform to the norms of the sport
ethic even when it creates problems, causes pain,
disrupts family life, jeopardizes health and safety or
shortens life expectancy
B. Reasons for overconformity
1. Playing sports is so exciting and exhilarating that athletes
will do almost anything to stay involved
2. Being selected to play high-performance sports often
depends on a perceived willingness to overconform
placed by coaches and managers
3. Exceeding norms creates a feeling of togetherness that
encourages athletes to put their body on the line for their
– SI Article
V. Athletes most likely to be deviant
A. Athletes who have a low self-esteem or are so
eager to be accepted as athletes that they will
do whatever it takes to be accepted by their
B. Athletes who see achievement in sports as the
only way to get ahead, gain respect and become
C. Male athletes who link together being an athlete
and being a man so that athletics and manliness
become one in their minds
VI. Problems with studying Deviance
in Sports
A. Actions accepted in sports may be deviant in
other spheres of society and actions
accepted in society may be deviant in sports
– If society’s rules don’t apply to you on the
athletic field, why should they apply off the
– Pick an athlete that has had a problem with the
law and explain why they may think it is OK
• Oj?
Violence in Sports
• Violence is accepted when soldiers, police and
athletes are protecting people or pursuing
victories in the name of others.
• For example: If a football player hits an
official because the official threw a flag, that is
undercomformity and is severely punished,
but if a player is told to be aggressive by their
coach and delivers a punishing tackle which
breaks another players ribs, that is OK.
Types of Violence
• Brutal Body Contact-hits, tackles, body checks
• Borderline Violence-brush back pitch, well
placed elbow or knee, “NFL Big Hits”, fistfight
• Quasi-Criminal Violence-cheap shots, late hits,
flagrant fouls
• Criminal Violence-assaults that occur after the
game or during a game that are premeditated
and severe enough to kill
• Violence and Masculinity
– Hockey Dad in Massachusetts (p203, Oprah 8 min)
• Violence off the field
– If you play violent sports can you turn it off when you are no
longer playing?
– Violence against animals
• Mike Vick (60 Minutes 14 min)
– Violence against women
• Kobe Bryant
• Ben Roethlisberger
• Violence among spectators
– With athletes--Pacers v. Pistons
– With each other
B. Deviance in sports often involves an
unquestioned acceptance of norms, rather
than a rejection of norms
1. The athletes and people around them think what
they are doing is “normal”
2. If “everyone is doing it” is it the norm?
Whatever it takes or Cheating?
• Would you use a corked bat?
• Would you cheat in the classroom to stay
• Would you cheat in the sport when you could
“get away with it?”
• Would you use performance enhancing drugs?
• Supplement Survey
30 Days
• Anti-Aging
C. Training and performance in sports are now
based on such new forms of science and
technology that people have not yet
developed norms to guide the actions of
athletes and others in sports
1. Year round training
2. Supplements
3. Steroids, HGH, Blood Doping, Masking Agents
Doping for Gold Video
• Reading
4th Grade
Talking about
VII. What should be done to prevent
deviance in sports?
A. Drug Testing
1. Who should pay for it?
2. Can it keep up with the athletes?
B. Governing Agencies
C. Educational Programs
D. Nothing. Why should athletes be singled out?
Colleges do not ban students from using caffeine
to stay up all night studying for a final.
Employers do not stop people form using
hormone therapies that help them get back to
work or stay working.

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