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Dr. Shaquille O’Neal: Finishing his Dissertation in December



Not only have we learned that Shaquille O’Neal will have a 900-pound statue in bronze at Louisiana State University, he is also finishing up a top-secret doctoral program, according to ESPN. 

Most doctoral programs take five years to complete. He informed the media he has been working on his doctorate for four years.


Though Shaq left LSU early to pursue his basketball career, education always weighed heavily upon him. In 2000 he returned to LSU on a part-time basis to earn his Bachelor of Arts degree in General Studies with a minor in political science.


Shaq has not revealed whether he also pursued a Master level degree. Nor has he stated in what field he achieved his distinction.


However, this week upon the announcement that a statue of him would be erected at LSU, he spoke about his continuing education.

Since much doctoral work can be done independently, especially dissertation work, he has actively been involved for quite some time with distance learning. He expects to defend his dissertation in December. 

O’Neal revealed that his dissertation will cover the subject of Duality of Humor and Aggression in Leadership Style.

We love humor dissertations and may ask to sit in on Shaq's doctoral committee.

Since O’Neal is an old hand at both aggression and humor, we can expect some subjective information may slip into the objective and scientific treatise.


We also wonder whether he had human subjects as part of his methodology of study or used historical sources like Rodney Dangerfield.

If so, all had to sign off that they were willing to be part of his study. We would not compare Boston Celtics players like Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen, and Paul Pierce to either guinea pigs or rats in a maze, we look forward to the test results that involved any NBA players.

Part of what the future Dr. O’Neal faces is his oral examination in which a board of scholars from the university will read his study and question him on its validity and methodology.

Though O’Neal joked about going to Harvard while he played for the Boston Celtics, his degree from LSU is highly regarded among academics. Only a handful of NBA players ever returned to school to finish their degrees.


Word about Shaq should inspire Rajon Rondo to finish his degree at Kentucky, as he has expressed interest in doing so this year.

In keeping with the spirit of his dissertation, O’Neal mused that he will no longer answer to Shaq after he receives his academic degree, but will respond to “Dr. O’Neal.”


William Russo has written many humor books, including SEX, DRUGS, SPORTS & WHIMSY. You may find his books on in both print and e-book formats.



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