Aaron Goodson

Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



College of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences


Physical Education Teacher Education

Committee Chair

Dana D Brooks

Committee Co-Chair

Edward E Jacobs

Committee Member

Jack C Watson


Follow-up studies of clustering by academic major, the dynamic of 25% or more of the student-athletes on a roster pursuing the same academic major, indicate that it still occurs in revenue-generating sports (Fountain & Finley 2009, 2011; Otto, 2012). Clustering challenges the notion that student-athletes have control over their collegiate academic experience and reveals that their educational pursuits may not align with their professional goals or provide a meaningful educational experience (Sharp & Sheilley, 2008). Research on clustering is absent in member institutions of different NCAA divisions, institutions with unique missions and history (such as Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) or single-sex institutions), and institutions of higher education in other organizations such as junior colleges or community colleges. This study examined the academic majors of student-athletes in football and men's basketball at select HBCUs over four years. The results revealed that clustering occurred within basketball at four institutions, but only occurred within football at one institution. Additionally, clustering by academic major occurred at NCAA Division I and II institutions. From these results, it is clear that clustering by academic major is not just an issue at "big time" institutions, but potentially a widespread issue across collegiate athletics.