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Affiliated Scholars

The Affiliated Scholars program aligns with the SRRA’s goals to:

  • conduct contextualized research (the convergence of sport, religion, and spirituality),
  • disseminate findings from significant studies in the area of sport and religion,
  • engage in collaborative programming (e.g., speakers, webinars, mini-conferences) with our internal and external partners where appropriate.

The program creates a network of scholars who support these goals through their research engagement related to sport and religion. These individuals can be faculty at the University of Tennessee as well as external faculty.


Affiliated scholars are expected to regularly publish research related to sport and religion. Pertaining to these topics, we expect at least one presentation at a national/international conference per year and at least one scholarly publication (i.e., peer-reviewed journal article, book chapter, or book) every two years. Affiliated Scholars provide the center with updated information regarding research activities and publications.


Affiliated scholars become part of a network of active scholars. Their work will be featured on the center’s site and in annual reports. Affiliated scholars receive notification of the center’s events and are welcome to attend. Affiliated scholars can also serve as guest speakers in classes, webinars, or conferences.

Becoming an Affiliated Scholar

We accept affiliated scholars by invitation only. For more information, please contact Lars Dzikus at

List of Affiliated Scholars

Landon Huffman is an Associate Professor of Sport and Fitness Leadership at Johnson University. His areas of expertise include sport and spirituality, as well as holistic development. Most recently, Huffman published “Double-edged sword: Cambridge Christian School v. Florida High School Athletic Association” in Sports Litigation Alert (2020) and “Coach Small Religious Protection Act: Public Employee or Private Citizen?” in Sports Litigation Alert (2018). 

Jeff Scholes is an Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy, University of Colorado, Colorado Springs. He also serves as the Director for the Center for Religious Diversity and Public Life. His research focuses on popular theology and consumer culture and connections between religion and sports. Scholes is the author of Christianity, Race, and Sport, New York: Routledge, 2021 and Religion and Sports in American Culture, with Raphael Sassower. New York: Routledge, 2014.

Zachary Smith is an Assistant Teaching Professor in Kinesiology, in the School of Behavioral​ Sciences & Education at Penn State University (Harrisburg). His interests include sports/physical cultures and religions and theory & method in the studies of religions and sports. He is the author of author of the articles “Can Sport be Regarded as ‘Cultural Liturgy’?” published in Sport in Society (2019) and “Re-telling the “Story So Far”: Reconsidering Sport and Spirituality in Light of the New Age” published in Quest (2019).