When Race, Religion, and Sport Collide tells the story of Brandon Davies' dismissal from Brigham Young University's NCAA playoff basketball team to illustrate the thorny intersection of religion, race, and sport at BYU and beyond. Author Darron T. Smith analyzes the athletes dismissed through BYU's honor code violations and suggests that they are disproportionately African American, which has troubling implications. He ties these dismissals to the complicated history of negative views toward African Americans in the LDS faith. These honor code dismissals elucidate the challenges facing black athletes at predominantly white institutions. Weaving together the history of the black athlete in America and the experience of blackness in Mormon theology, When Race, Religion, and Sport Collide offers a timely and powerful analysis of the challenges facing African American athletes in the NCAA today.
Darron T. Smith is an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Sociology at the University of Memphis. He has lectured and published widely in the fields of healthcare disparities, religious studies, and transracial adoption and the black family. Dr. Smith is coauthor of White Parents, Black Children: Experiencing Transracial Adoption as well as coeditor of Black and Mormon and The Impact of Social Factors on Health. He is a frequent political and cultural commentator for the Huffington Post on various issues of US-based oppression and has contributed to various media, including Religion Dispatches and ESPN's Outside the Lines.