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

  • Franklin G. Mixon

    ()

    (Columbus State University)

  • Rand W. Ressler

    ()

    (University of Louisiana)

  • Richard J. Cebula

    ()

    (Jacksonville University)

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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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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  4. Aizer, Anna & Currie, Janet, 2004. "Networks or neighborhoods? Correlations in the use of publicly-funded maternity care in California," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(12), pages 2573-2585, December.
  5. Dora L. Costa & Matthew E. Kahn, 2005. "Surviving Andersonville: The Benefits of Social Networks in POW Camps," NBER Working Papers 11825, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. 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.
  7. Bandiera, Oriana & Barankay, Iwan & Rasul, Imran, 2009. "Social Incentives in the Workplace," IZA Discussion Papers 4190, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. 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.
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