League of Fans

Founded by Ralph Nader, League of Fans is a sports reform project working to improve sports by increasing awareness of the sports industry's relationship to society, exposing irresponsible business practices, ensuring accountability to fans, and encouraging the industry to contribute to societal well-being.

Email Alerts

Alerts is League of Fans' email announcements list. Alerts provides news, information, the actions of League of Fans and/or Ralph Nader regarding sports issues, and calls-to-action for subscribers. All email updates are either selected or written by League of Fans.


League of Fans is motivated by people, just like you, who are upset with what has become of our sports and would like to make a difference. We work with concerned citizens, sports fans, civic groups and communities to increase awareness of the sports industry's relationship to society, influence a broad range of issues in sports at all levels and encourage the cooperative capacities that make the "sports powers-that-be" capable of helping, not just dominating, our society and culture.

News / Resources

We often think of sports as outside the realm of everyday citizen concern. But the many benefits to society that sports can provide are sometimes undermined by a different set of values, often based on the quest for higher and higher profits at the expense of fans, taxpayers, communities, culture and social justice.

Your Role

Get Involved! Your involvement will improve sports for communities and fans, and encourage the sports industry to better contribute to societal well-being.

Race and Sports

Blacks, Race and Sports

Black Coaches Association
by Richard E. Lapchick

Black College Football Coaches Lose Yardage
by Richard E. Lapchick

CBS SportsLine's Race and Sports series (May, 1999)
Examines the issue of race and sports with an eight-part series including 21 articles.

Center on Blacks and the Media (CBM) - HYPE newsletter and webzine
- Television: Is it the Super Bowl of Bias?
Monitoring the Black image in the media.

Change of Colors: 50th Anniversary of the NBA's Integration
by Richard E. Lapchick

The Color Bar Gets Raised in Baseball
by Richard E. Lapchick

Crime and Athletes: The New Racial Stereotypes of the 1990's
by Richard E. Lapchick

ESPN's coverage of Black History Month (February, 2002)
- Sadly, stardom often only skin deep, by Richard E. Lapchick
- Is Jesse Jackson out of his league?, by Greg Garber
- The man who would be King in the Sports Arena, by Dr. Harry Edwards
- Agents of change see slow progress in sports, by David Aldridge
- Baseball's next great black hope, by Darren Rovell
- Black history is everybody's history, by Ralph Wiley

"Football, Race, and the Power of One Word" - ESPN's Outside the Lines (June 4, 2000 Transcript)
Focuses on the significance of high school football, race, and a coach's use of the "N-word" in the small town of Wildwood, Florida.

"1 . . . And Only" - ESPN's Outside the Lines (June 17, 2001 Transcript)
Examines whether or not Tiger Woods has really had a positive effect on attracting more minorities to golf.

Tennis Opens Up
by Richard E. Lapchick

"Who's No. 1?" - ESPN's Outside the Lines (April 22, 2001 Transcript)
Considers whether the stigmas and stereotypes facing African-American quarterbacks are finally dying.

Race, Athletes, and Crime
by Richard E. Lapchick

Race Relations - About.com
- Taking the Pulse of Race and Sports
- Desperately Seeking Minority Coaches
- Sports Taking Aim at Diversity (part 1)
- Sports Taking Aim at Diversity (part 2)

Racial & Gender Report Card - Northeastern University's Center for the Study of Sport in Society
Comprehensive research document that analyzes the hiring practices of women and people of color in the NBA, NFL, Major League Baseball, NHL, Major League Soccer, the Women's NBA, the NCAA and its member institutions.

Russell and Ali: Living By Principles Pays Dividends
by Richard E. Lapchick

Smashing Barriers in College Football
by Richard E. Lapchick

Sports, Politics and Race: From South Africa to South Carolina
by Richard E. Lapchick

Women of Color in Sports: Double Jeopardy
by Richard E. Lapchick

Native Americans, Race and Sports

American Indian Sports Team Mascots
Index of recent and archived legislation, news articles, action alerts and educator's resources concerning the use of American Indian images and nicknames as sports symbols.

"The Fighting Whites"
Intramural basketball team organized by a group of Native American and non-Indian students from the University of Northern Colorado to make a straightforward statement using humor regarding stereotyping American Indians in sports symbolism.

Hank Aaron Steps Up to the Plate on the use of Native American Names and Mascots in Sport
by Richard E. Lapchick

"Honor or Shame?" - ESPN's Outside the Lines (March 11, 2001 Transcript)
Explores the controversy surrounding the use of Native American nicknames and mascots in sports.

"The Native American Sports Experience" - ESPN's Outside the Lines (November, 1999)
- What's in a name?
- Notah Begay's long walk
- A team of their own
- Chat Wrap: Begay: No pressure
- Chat Wrap: Harjo: Get educated

"Indian" Mascot & Logo Taskforce - Wisconsin Indian Education Association
Seeks innovative legal, educational and political means to eliminate the use of "Indian" mascots, logos and nicknames from all state supported educational facilities.

In Whose Honor?
Documentary about American Indian mascots in sports.

National Coalition on Racism in Sports and the Media (NCRSM)
To organize against the use of Indian images and names for logos, symbols or mascots in professional and collegiate sports, marketing and the media.

The Progressive Resource/Action Cooperative (PRC) - Anti-"Chief" page
Working to promote human rights, democracy, and self-determination for all people.

Racism in Professional, College, and High School Sports Teams
Resource for the research of racism and sports mascots.

Resources for Further Research on the Mascot Issue

Team Names and Mascots - Blue Corn Comics
Thoughts on Native American team names and mascots from the publisher of "Peace Party", a multicultural comic book featuring Native Americans.

Trained as Mascots - American Comments web magazine

U.S. Commission on Civil Rights - Statement on the Use of Native American Images and Nicknames as Sports Symbols
Independent, bipartisan, fact-finding agency of the executive branch established under the Civil Rights Act of 1957 focusing on discrimination or denial of equal protection of the laws because of race, color, religion, sex, age, disability, or national origin, or in the administration of justice.

General Resources on Race and Sports

Breaking the Ranks: New Images in Sport
by Richard E. Lapchick

Hate and Redemption
by Richard E. Lapchick

The Olympic Stage: A Focus on Racism Down Under
by Richard E. Lapchick

MediaChannel - Sex, Race and Sports
Concerned with the political, cultural and social impacts of the media, large and small. Providing information and diverse perspectives and inspiring debate, collaboration, action and citizen engagement.

Performance and Reality: Race, Sports and the Modern World - from "The Nation" (August, 10 1998)
Addresses the role of race in sports. By Gerald Early for "The Nation" magazine.

Project TEAMWORK - Northeastern University's Center for the Study of Sport in Society
Diversity awareness and conflict resolution program composed of former professional and collegiate athletes working with middle and high school students to combat all forms of discrimination and teach practical conflict resolution skills.

Rockin' Racism
by Richard E. Lapchick

Sports Career Awareness and Placement (SportsCAP) - Northeastern University's Center for the Study of Sport in Society
Designed to provide women, people of color, and people with disabilities with improved access to the sporting industry ranging from internships to high-level management, legal and medical positions.