Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Health, Sport and Exercise Science (PhD)

Degree Level



Health, Human Performance and Recreation


Stephen W. Dittmore

Committee Member

Terence W. Eddy

Second Committee Member

Steve Langsner

Third Committee Member

Kasey Walker


Collegiate Sports, CSR


Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has been an important topic in business and other disciplines due to its various benefits for both society (e.g., contributing to public health, safety, education, human rights, community well-being, environment) and organizations (e.g., attracting new customers, enhancing sales of products, developing positive brand image or reputation) (Inoue, 2011; Kim, 2015; Kotler & Lee, 2005; Smith & Westerbeek, 2007). Many consumers expect corporate organizations to demonstrate their commitments and contributions to the community (Marin, Ruiz, & Rubio, 2009; Walker & Heere, 2011). Thus, it is important to satisfy their expectations through social activities since consumers are considered as a valuable asset for many business organizations. Similarly, sporting organizations have utilized CSR activities for the communities to satisfy sport consumers’ expectations. Furthermore, sport has a positive impact on the community with unique features such as large media, public attention, star power, and positive health impacts (Buck, Lupinek, & Huberty, 2015; Ko et al., 2014; Smith & Westerbeek, 2007). Despite this, little investigation has been undertaken to examine the effects of CSR and its outcomes, as practiced by collegiate athletic departments.

The purpose of this study, therefore, was as follows: (1) to examine the influence of college sport consumers’ awareness of CSR on conative loyalty; (2) to identify the mediating effects of sport involvement and commitment in the relationship between awareness of CSR and conative loyalty.

The results of SEM revealed awareness of CSR had a positive effect on sport involvement and commitment. The results also indicated sport involvement had a positive effect on commitment, and commitment had a positive effect on conative loyalty. However, both awareness of CSR and sport involvement had no significant effect on conative loyalty. Thus, the follow-up analysis was performed without the direct paths that were not statistically significant to achieve model parsimony. Finally, all estimated parameters were statistically significant in the final SEM model. The study employed Bootstrapping method to identify indirect effects, and found mediating effect of sport involvement was identified in the relationship between awareness of CSR and conative loyalty when the effect of commitment as a mediator was simultaneously examined.