Research by Samford University communication and media professors Betsy Emmons and Clay Carey has earned top honors from the International Communication Association (ICA). The pair will present their paper for the Top Papers in Sports Communication panel at the organization’s 72nd annual conference in Paris, France, in May.
In their collaborative project–“You Guys Could Be Up Here, Too”: Poverty, Escape Narratives, and Joe Burrow–the pair explore media coverage of Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow. They note that after Burrows’ 2019 Heisman Memorial Trophy honor, media attention often focused on his Athens, Ohio, hometown. Emmons and Carey suggest that Burrow’s story became more about that impoverished white community than his athletic performance, falling into tropes that were not always accurate, and problematizing broader discussions of poverty.
Emmons’ research interests include social media in sports and sports journalism. Carey’s research on how media reports on poverty issues has earned multiple national honors.