This qualitative research study explores the sports students’ experiences of role modelling when teaching responsibility to Grade 3 learners. For this study, the sports students were identified as primary participants, whereas the Grade 3 learners were considered as indirect participants. This study was informed by an interpretivist paradigm and guided by a conceptual and theoretical framework. The literature on sports students acting as role models informed me about the capabilities of young adults to become better people and to influence Grade 3 learners to become responsible citizens through rugby. The literature highlighted the use of physical activities as sport to promote social responsibility in young learners. The data collection methods and instruments used in the study were designed to ascertain the opinions and perceptions of the sports students as well as the Grade 3 learners. The involvement of the Grade 3 learners as indirect participants and the sports students helped me to form the foundation on which my research was based. In addition, their participation in this study helped me to answer the main and secondary research questions. Bandura’s theory was used to analyse and understand the findings of this study. The data collection instruments include observations, field notes, sports students’ reflections, learners’ artefacts and photo voice method. These methods and instruments were used to collect data from every research participant, I then coded the data from sports students’ reflections and learners’ artefacts, to formulate an in-depth understanding of their responses. The key findings of the study confirmed that sports students acting as role models can positively influence young learners to become responsible citizens. It was evident in the study that sports students could become better people and future responsible citizens.