Different Career Paths with a Sports Management Degree

If you have a passion for sports and business, you may want to pursue a sports management degree. It can give you the tools you need to work in a diverse and wide-ranging field that offers more than just athletics. Choosing a sports management major provides a rich educational background in law, finance, marketing, and business as they relate to the billion-dollar sports industry.

Graduating from a school like Sarah Lawrence College can provide a wealth of options for students seeking jobs with a sports management degree. Many graduates go on to work in all levels of athletics, amateur, collegiate, and professional, whether it’s in a particular league, a team, or in the marketing and public relations departments of both. Sports management can also get you a job as a manager or agent to some of the biggest stars in professional sports. In fact, there is no shortage of potential career paths with a sports management degree.

General Manager

You’re in control of hiring players, coaches, recruiters, and other related personnel for a professional sports team. The general manager or GM makes decisions to draft, trade, and release players with an eye toward finding the strengths and weaknesses of your roster both prior to and during the season, particularly at the trade deadline. A GM also has a hand in creating the team budget and managing team revenues.

Sports Agent

Much in the same way as a talent agent might seek out and sign fresh new actors, actresses, and directors, a sports agent focuses on finding the next Lebron James or the next Tom Brady. Agents represent their clients in everything from negotiating contracts and salaries with a prospective team in that player’s specific league to seeking out endorsement deals with brands. These sometimes generate a higher income for the player than that which they receive from their team.

Player Marketing

Athletes aren’t just people anymore, they’ve become their own brands and they need savvy marketing managers to help those brands grow in the marketplace. That includes aligning the player with the right groups and organizations and providing brand rehabilitation in the event the player does something that may be considered negative in the public eye.

Athlete Lectures

Many players, coaches, GM’s, and other personnel who are no longer in the game will find a lucrative career on the lecture circuit and autograph shows. They need people to manage those appearances and find promoters and organizations seeking out former players and other greats in all the major leagues.

Sports Media

Do you like to talk sports and write about sports? There are ample opportunities to get into the media side of sports as a blogger, a podcaster, even becoming a journalist or sideline reporter for television or radio. A sports management degree can give you the necessary background to break into the business of reporting on the NFL, NHL, NBA, MLB, MLS, and more. If you’ve ever wanted to work for ESPN, a sports management degree could get you there.


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