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MEP315 SPORT, MEDIA AND CELEBRITY 9. CASE STUDY IV: TIGER WOODS.

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Presentation on theme: "MEP315 SPORT, MEDIA AND CELEBRITY 9. CASE STUDY IV: TIGER WOODS."— Presentation transcript:

1 MEP315 SPORT, MEDIA AND CELEBRITY 9. CASE STUDY IV: TIGER WOODS

2 Biographical Details  1975: Born Cypress, California  1996: Wins 3 rd US amateur title, turns professional, wins first PGA Tour event  1997: Wins first ‘major’, the US Masters  2000: Signs 5-year $105 million Nike deal, brokered by media and entertainment agency International Management Group (IMG)  : ‘Tiger Slam’ (all 4 majors)  , 2005-: World Number 1  2007: Highest paid professional athlete ($122 million in sponsorship and winnings)  2009: 14 major wins to date (18 the record)

3 Tiger Woods as global golf star  American father, Thai mother  Mixed racial identity – ‘Cablinasian’ (Caucasian, Black, [American] Indian, Asian)  Father of 2 children with Swedish wife  Woods is a devout Buddhist  Golfing victories throughout world (US, European, Asian Tour, etc.)

4 Racism in golf  Up to mid-20thC, almost all US golf clubs refused to admit African-Americans  1943: US PGA limits membership to the Caucasian race  ‘As long as I’m alive, golfers will be white and caddies will be black’ (Clifford Roberts, former Chairman, Augusta National Golf Club)  Charlie Sifford: first black golfer to make an impact on PGA Tour, won two events, helped to desegregate the sport in late 1950s/1960s

5 Tiger and the Nike campaigns  ‘Hello World’: first Woods ad draws attention to racial discrimination in golf  Woods perceived by some as ‘race carding’ – i.e. receiving favourable promotional terms due to his non-whiteness  However, later Nike ad (‘I am Tiger Woods’) plays down racial differences  Woods rendered apolitical/without a voice by Nike campaigns (Cole and Andrews 2006: 351)

6 Tiger versus Michael Jordan  1996: Jordan’s career coming to an end, Nike turn to Tiger as key brand ambassador  Like Jordan before him, Woods is a corporate consumer vehicle praised for transforming the popularity of his sport  The huge success of these ethnic minority stars deflects attention away from real problems in black America (unemployment, social inequalities, poverty)  Golf is more elitist/white-dominated than basketball – so Tiger’s achievements all the more notable

7 Tiger as role model  Tiger Woods Foundation: est. 1996, helps disadvantaged children to participate in golf clinics  Tiger Jam: annual music festival that helps fund the TWF  Speech at Obama inaugural – Tiger wants to use golf as a platform upon which to become more politically active in future?

8 Role model gone wrong!  November 2009: huge media/public scandal as a series of extra-marital affairs are exposed  Woods is condemned by fellow golf professionals as well as others  Major sponsors desert Woods (AT&T, Gatorade, Accenture)  August 2010: Woods divorced from his wife (Nordegren)  October 2010: Woods loses his World No. 1 ranking (after 5 years at the top)


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