“Challenges of Being a Black Student Athlete on U .S . College Campuses”

The purpose of this Literature review article is to examine the social, cultural, individual
and institutional racist factors that pose challenges to many African American college athletes,
both men and women, to develop skills outside sports that are necessary to succeed in college
and life. The passion for athletics by Black youth has to be positioned within the wider racist
environment that one is exposed to while growing up. The dominant presence of Blacks in the
high profile sports of football, basketball and track and field while having lower graduation
rates compared to White athletes deserves scholarly interrogation. This article uses the Critical
Race Theory (CRT) and Student Involvement Theory frameworks to explain the phenomena of
Black student athletes in College and the challenges that they encounter as they pursue both
athletic and academic success. Based on Edwards’ (2000) contextualization of the Black athlete
which is premised on the Critical Race Theory (CRT) and Astin’s (1984) Student Involvement
Theory (SIT), this article examines the following issues: The legacy of racism and
discrimination; Black athletes and labor on campus; sport and race ideology; graduation rates
and the academic challenges faced by Black student athletes. The academic challenges
that Black athletes face while pursuing a dual objective of excelling in athletics and getting a college
education are situated within the racial laden learning environment characterizing the
Predominantly White Colleges (PWC) in the U.S. (To see full article, click link.)


by Njororai, Wycliffe W. Simiyu
Wiley College