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Beyond the Friday night lights: Social networks, migration, and individual success in college football

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Author Info

  • Franklin G. Mixon

    ()
    (Columbus State University)

  • Rand W. Ressler

    ()
    (University of Louisiana)

  • Richard J. Cebula

    ()
    (Jacksonville University)

Abstract

This study examines the potential benefits of social networks through the development of high school football players into big-time collegiate football stars. Many of these young men have spent 17 or 18 years surrounded and supported by family members, friends, and religious and civic organizations. That social network is, in a very short time frame, suddenly separated from them when they enter a new educational setting, which, in many instances, is located hundreds of miles from home. In some cases, however, high school football stars are fortunate enough to have high school teammates join the same far-away college football program, resulting in a natural experiment of the role of social networks. Results presented here indicate that the social network effect appears to be important in explaining individual success of college football players. That is, having one's high school football teammates sign scholarships with the same far-away institution significantly increases player i's probability of succeeding at the college level (and vice-versa) as a student-athlete.

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File URL: http://www.accessecon.com/Pubs/EB/2012/Volume32/EB-12-V32-I1-P3.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by AccessEcon in its journal Economics Bulletin.

Volume (Year): 32 (2012)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 16-26

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Handle: RePEc:ebl:ecbull:eb-11-00756

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Keywords: social networks; migration; human capital;

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  1. Dean Karlan & Markus Mobius & Tanya Rosenblat & Adam Szeidl, 2009. "Trust and Social Collateral," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 124(3), pages 1307-1361, August.
  2. Paul K. Gatons & Richard J. Cebula, 1972. "Wage-rate analysis: Differentials and indeterminacy," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 25(2), pages 207-212, January.
  3. Peter Kennedy, 2003. "A Guide to Econometrics, 5th Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 5, volume 1, number 026261183x, December.
  4. Oriana Bandiera & Iwan Barankay & Imran Rasul, 2010. "Social Incentives in the Workplace," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(2), pages 417-458.
  5. Dora L. Costa & Matthew E. Kahn, 2007. "Surviving Andersonville: The Benefits of Social Networks in POW Camps," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(4), pages 1467-1487, September.
  6. Yannis M. Ioannides & Linda Datcher Loury, 2004. "Job Information Networks, Neighborhood Effects, and Inequality," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(4), pages 1056-1093, December.
  7. Anna Aizer & Janet Currie, 2002. "Networks or Neighborhoods? Correlations in the Use of Publicly-Funded Maternity Care in California," NBER Working Papers 9209, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Dora L. Costa & Matthew E. Kahn, 2004. "Forging a New Identity: The Costs and Benefits of Diversity in Civil War Combat Units for Black Slaves and Freemen," NBER Working Papers 11013, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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