Journalism and Mass Communications, College of


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Rugby league is a form of rugby that is more similar to American football than its more globally popular cousin rugby union. This similarity to the United States of America’s most popular sport, that country’s appetite for sport, and its previous acceptance of foreign sports products makes rugby league an attractive product for American media outlets to present and promote.

Rugby league’s history as a working-class sport in England and Australia will appeal to American consumers hungry for grit and authenticity from their favorite athletes and teams. Established coverage of English soccer has paved the way for rugby league media in the United States and has been used as a blueprint for the ideas in this paper. This paper outlines rugby league’s history, cultural parameters, and marketability, and presents multiple media outlets and possible carriers, before settling on Sinclair Broadcast Group as an ideal rights-holder.

Special thanks to the project’s faculty committee: Professor John Shrader; the committee’s chair, Dr. Frauke Hachtmann, and Professor Joseph Weber for all their help and guidance along the way.