What Are Some Controversial Issues in Sports?

Doping, violent crime, personal scandal, illegal gambling, inappropriate conduct, sabotage, cheating and bribery are all controversial issues that have affected professional and amateur sports. Athletes who have become notorious due to scandal include Paralympic runner Oscar Pistorius, football player-turned-actor O.J. Simpson, baseball player Pete Rose and the college football program at Penn State University.

In 2013, after years of denying any wrongdoing, including denials that took place under oath, champion cyclist Lance Armstrong admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs throughout his successful career. The scandal was massive, not only because Armstrong had denied the charges so vehemently, but also because he had built a brand around his personality and success. Doping is one of the more common controversial issues in sports. Other famously scandalous issues involving professional sports include accusations of cheating, such as charges leveled at the New England Patriots following a videotaping scandal, and a variety of issues related to player behavior, from boxer Mike Tyson’s many legal issues to golfer Tiger Woods’ fall-from-grace following a sex scandal.