The Social-Psychological Implications of a Coaching Change at the Collegiate Level

Perceptions of Athletes

Authors

  • Todd A. Gilson Northern Illinois University
  • Amanda L. Paule-Koba Bowling Green State University
  • Emily Ann Heller Northern Illinois University

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.1123/jis.6.2.164

Keywords:

coach, NCAA, qualitative

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to better understand the social-psychological processes and outcomes athletes experience during a head coaching change. The authors conducted semistructured interviews with 47 NCAA Division I athletes, representing 11 different sports at 20 distinct institutions. Following inductive analysis of transcribed interviews, seven higher order themes emerged: emotions, academics, goals, leadership, negative effects, positive effects, and changing culture and structure of the team. According to the perceptions of athletes, results showed that coaches stressed the importance of academics and used goal setting principles with their new team. However, athletes also spoke to deficiencies in leadership and the emotional instability that resulted in a loss of confidence, increased stress, and feeling ignored by the new staff. Thus, open and honest lines of communication need to be formed early with athletes—by multiple athletic personnel—so that individuals have the support system necessary to prevent maladaptive results.

Author Biographies

Todd A. Gilson, Northern Illinois University

Gilson and Heller are with the Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL. Paule-Koba is with the School of Human Movement, Sport, & Leisure Studies, Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, OH.

Amanda L. Paule-Koba, Bowling Green State University

Gilson and Heller are with the Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL. Paule-Koba is with the School of Human Movement, Sport, & Leisure Studies, Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, OH.

Emily Ann Heller, Northern Illinois University

Gilson and Heller are with the Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL. Paule-Koba is with the School of Human Movement, Sport, & Leisure Studies, Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, OH.

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Published

2013-12-01

How to Cite

Gilson, T. A., Paule-Koba, A. L., & Heller, E. A. (2013). The Social-Psychological Implications of a Coaching Change at the Collegiate Level: Perceptions of Athletes. Journal of Intercollegiate Sport, 6(2), 164–178. https://doi.org/10.1123/jis.6.2.164