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Touchdowns and test scores: exploring the relationship between athletics and academics

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  • F. G. Mixon
  • L. J. TreviNO
  • T. C. Minto

Abstract

This article examines the relationship between college football success and SAT scores using an updated data series on football winning percentages. The finding here of a positive and significant relationship supports the idea that collegiate athletics, namely football, serves the institution's admissions process. Selective institutions are able to enhance the quality of their student populations. The spinoff benefit of winning teams is such a well-known phenomenon among university administrators that they even have a name for it - 'the Flutie factor,' for the 33 percent increase in applications that Doug Flutie helped bring Boston College when he was a football star there in the early 1980s. (Allen, 1999: 2)

Suggested Citation

  • F. G. Mixon & L. J. TreviNO & T. C. Minto, 2004. "Touchdowns and test scores: exploring the relationship between athletics and academics," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 11(7), pages 421-424.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:apeclt:v:11:y:2004:i:7:p:421-424
    DOI: 10.1080/1350485042000201906
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Tucker, Irvin III & Amato, Louis, 1993. "Does big-time success in football or basketball affect SAT scores?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 177-181, June.
    2. Long, James E & Caudill, Steven B, 1991. "The Impact of Participation in Intercollegiate Athletics on Income and Graduation," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(3), pages 525-531, August.
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    Cited by:

    1. Malcolm Getz & John Siegfried, 2010. "What Does Intercollegiate Athletics Do To or For Colleges and Universities?," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 1005, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
    2. Gregory B. Murphy & Neil Tocher & Bryant Ward, 2016. "An Examination of Public Private Academic Partnerships: Does Program Success Enhance University Performance Outcomes?," Public Organization Review, Springer, vol. 16(1), pages 95-115, March.

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