An Analysis of Interscholastic Athletic Directors’ Religious Values and Practices on Pregame Prayer in Southeastern United States: A Case Study

  • John J. Miller Troy University
  • Khalil Lee Auburn University
  • Christina L.L. Martin Troy University


Interscholastic athletic directors in eight states throughout the southeastern part of the United States were surveyed to analyze whether their personal religious practices affected their at-work practices and if relationships existed between the athletic directors’ religious values and their decisions to promote prayer at high school athletic events. Ninety percent reported that their religious values often or very often influenced their decisions at work. Ninety-three percent revealed that their athletic teams often or very often conducted a team-only pregame prayer, most often led by the head coach. However, more than half allowed public pregame prayer. Additional results indicated positive correlations existing between the frequency the athletic director attended religious services and how often religious practices were applied in their daily lives as well as how often religious values influenced work. A negative correlation revealed a relationship between the possible legal consequences and how often team prayer occurred before/after football games.
Case Study