University of Idaho
Center for ETHICS
500 Memorial Gym
Moscow, ID 83844-3080 
Phone: (208) 885-2103
Fax: (208) 885-2108  

Winning With Character

Winning With Character  provided character and ethics education resources to collegiate and high school athletes.  The purpose of the program was to:

  • Challenge athletes to reach their full potential in the classroom, on the field, and in          society.

  • Provide understanding, reasoning, and application of moral and ethical principles.

  • Change thinking (year 1) and behavior (years 2 through 4).

Winning With Character was initially developed for the University of Georgia football team. 

Coach Mark Richt had a belief in the importance of the personal development of his players and through this belief Coach Richt, Bobby Lankford, and Sharon K. Stoll developed Winning With Character.

Winning With Character stood apart from other character educational programs in the following ways:

  1. combined informal (influences) and formal (reasoning) educational methods

  2. utilized research-based curriculum targeted to student-athletes

  3. contained embedded facilitators and mentors within the local sports program

  4. conducted pre and post testing measurement evaluation

  5. consisted of professional academic content, backed by 14 years of research

  6. it was a service and consultative supported program 

Our model focused on two questions:

  • Are my actions honorable?

  • Are my actions responsible?

These two questions laid the base for our evaluative measurement instruments to create a database covering over 80,000 students across 250 high schools and university sport studies over the past 17 years.

Our measurement tools were based on the belief that:

  1. character is learned;

  2. learning has a definitive, cognitive process;

  3. if learned, character can be taught, and

  4. if taught, character, or principled thinking, can be measured and improved 

Unfortunately, Winning with Character no longer exists as an entity because the President and Director, Bobby Lankford, was forced to retire from ill health.  However, the vision that he saw in this program and the curriculum developed is still available through the Center for ETHICS*.  Please contact us 208 885 2013; or email us at