Caughron, Rodney L.
M.S. Ed. (Master of Education)
Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education
Football coaches--Legal status; laws; etc.--Illinois; Football--Coaching--Law and legislation--Illinois; School sports--Coaching--Law and legislation--Illinois; Prayer in the public schools--Law and legislation--Illinois
The tradition of pregame prayer in interscholastic sports in the United States is well established, despite explicit restrictions from Supreme Court cases prohibiting pregame prayer practices due to the obvious violation of the First Amendment Establishment Clause provision. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate the level of knowledge of legally allowable pregame prayer practices and to ascertain the current pregame prayer practices of current Illinois head high-school football coaches in Class 1A and 6A schools. A survey was sent to all 67 (45 returned) Class 1A and 103 (48 returned) Class 6A head high-school football coaches in the state of Illinois. The data revealed that 28 (31.10%) of all respondents correctly chose the legally allowable pregame prayer procedure (Knowledge), with 11 (25.60%) of the Class 1A respondents and 17 (36.20%) of the Class 6A respondents answering the item correctly. The data also revealed that 23 (24.70%) of all respondents were currently practicing the legally allowable pregame prayer procedure (Practice), and 12 (26.70%) of the Class 1A respondents and 11 (22.90%) of the Class 6A respondents were currently complying with the prescribed pregame practice procedure. A Phi test revealed a statistically significant difference in the current practice between those respondents who answered the correct response to the Knowledge item and those who did not, indicating that knowledge of allowable Practice was important in actually complying with the law. A t test revealed a statistically significant difference in Knowledge between the two classes. Class 6 A respondents demonstrated a greater level of Knowledge than did the Class 1A respondents. Statistical analysis revealed no significant difference between the two classes in Practice or between those respondents who perceived themselves to be religious and those who did not perceive themselves to be religious. T tests revealed a statistically significant difference between respondents? Knowledge and Practice if they had attended a high school that allowed school prayer. Those respondents who had attended a high school that allowed prayer were less knowledgeable and less compliant with allowable pregame prayer procedures.
Dubicz, Robert H., "The compliance of class 1A and 6A football coaches in Illinois to the establishment clause and its relationship to pregame prayer and moments of silence" (1999). Graduate Research Theses & Dissertations. 5367.
vi, 78 pages
Northern Illinois University
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