Last updated on February 13th, 2024 at 01:46 pm

There’s something almost universally appealing about sports. Whether it’s the fierce competition, the sense of camaraderie between team members and fans, or the thrill of the game itself, it’s not surprising that many people love sports — and as a result, some may want to focus their life’s work on this ever-evolving industry.

If you are looking into careers in sports management, it’s essential to do your research. Before choosing a career in sports management, you’ll want to know more about the types of jobs you can get with a sports management degree. You’ll probably be surprised by the vast range of options in the sports industry.

Sports Management and Its Career Opportunities

One of the most common misconceptions about the sports industry is that it is focused solely on professional sports. While professional sports represent a vast, growing industry — and there are many job opportunities within the realm of professional sports — there are also ways to get involved in the sports industry at a smaller, more local level. Qualified professionals are needed to create and maintain organized sports at the community level and coordinate intramural sports for schools and universities.

Within the world of sports, there are a variety of niche sectors in which graduates with a sports management degree can find employment. The sports and entertainment field is expected to grow significantly in the coming years. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, about 106,800 jobs are expected to be added within the sports and entertainment industry each year over the next decade.

These are some of the sectors in which you can find jobs with a sports management degree:

  • Sports Marketing
  • Sports Promotion
  • Event Management
  • Sports Facility Management
  • Sports Media and Communications
  • Athlete Representation
  • Sports Agency
  • Sports Finance
  • Sports Business Operations
  • Sports Analytics and Data Management
  • Coaching and Player Development
  • Nonprofit Organizations
  • Community Outreach

Sports Marketing and Promotions Careers

Those with a flair for generating buzz and attracting attention may find sports marketing and promotions is the perfect niche for them within the sports industry. Within the sports marketing and promotions world, some professionals may focus on developing social media strategies for a particular sports team or organization. In contrast, others will work to sell in-demand products to athletes or others in the sports industry. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, most marketing positions are office-based, but some may require travel.

These are some sports marketing jobs that you might consider with a sports management degree:

  • Public Relations Specialist
  • Brand Manager
  • Sales Manager
  • Promotional Manager
  • Promoter
  • Market Researcher
  • Account Coordinator
  • Account Executive
  • Marketing Manager

Event Management and Sports Facility Careers

If you are the type of person who loves to coordinate logistics, then event and facility management may be the best sector of the sports industry to focus your career.

On the event management side of the spectrum, professionals plan events for a particular sports team or coordinate events for an athletic facility. The Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that meeting, convention, and event planners arrange all aspects of an event, including scheduling, coordinating food, bringing in entertainment, planning decor, and arranging the seating. This field is expected to grow by almost 8 percent by 2032, faster than average for all occupations.

These are some job opportunities available in event and sports facility management:

  • Venue Manager
  • Event Coordinator
  • Tournament Director
  • Assistant Campus Operations Manager
  • Director of Event Marketing
  • Senior Special Events Coordinator
  • Event Project Manager
  • Game Day Staff
  • Operations Supervisor
  • Event Manager
  • Site Development and Programming Director
  • Director of Event Services

Sports Media and Communications Careers

Do you live and breathe sports? If so, a sports media and communications career may be particularly rewarding. This field is ideal for sports enthusiasts who love to follow the game, understand the nuances of sports, and are interested in monitoring sports trends. You can find sports media and communication positions at news agencies, websites, public relations firms, universities, and anywhere you can find athletic teams.

Sports media and communications professionals are often invited to attend an individual sporting event to cover it, which can be an added bonus for those working in this field.

These are some job opportunities within the sports media and communications field:

  • Production Assistant
  • Graphic Designer
  • Photographer
  • Video or Film Producer
  • Copywriter
  • Online Writer
  • Sportswriter
  • Sports Reporter
  • Sports Commentator
  • Play-by-Play Commentator
  • Sports Editor

Athlete Representation and Sports Agency Careers

You may recognize that athletes are a product in and of themselves and, therefore, deserve proper brand representation. If so, a career as an agent may be ideal for you.

Those working as a representative or agent for an individual athlete secure sponsorships, develop a brand identity for their client and secure promotional opportunities that allow them to grow their athletic career dynamically and reliably. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, agents and business managers are primarily responsible for developing and handling business contracts. A high concentration of agents and business managers work within the spectator sports industry.

These are some athlete representation and sports agency positions that you might be qualified for with a sports management degree:

  • Sponsorship Coordinator
  • Booking Agent
  • Sports Agent
  • Sports Mediator
  • Sports Arbitrator
  • Business Manager

Sports Finance and Business Operations Careers

Whether you work in youth athletics or professional sports, you will find that the world of sports is backed by money. Business professionals with a solid understanding of the best financial practices are always in high demand within the sports industry.

Within this sector, most professionals work in an office setting, but travel may be required. Scouts often need to go on recruiting trips and see which athletes may be the best investment for the organization.

If you are a skilled business professional who wants to align your professional strengths with your interest in sports, consider sports finance and business operations. Some sports finance and business-focused careers include:

  • Financial Manager
  • Legal Services Provider
  • Sports and Health Club Staff Member
  • Ticket Sales Representative
  • Sports Accountant
  • Scouting Professional

Sports Analytics and Data Management Careers

Suppose numbers, metrics, patterns, and algorithms are your thing. In that case, a sports analytics and data management career may best suit you. The sports statistics industry is multiplying as team managers, recruiters, and scouts rely more heavily on athletic data and metrics to predict athletes.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a master’s degree in sports management is required to work in this field. The demand for sports statistical analytics professionals is expected to grow by more than 27 percent in the coming decade.

These are some of the positions available within this sector of the sports industry:

  • Sports Analyst
  • Sports Reporter
  • Sports Data Researcher

Sports Administration and Operations Careers

When you have a well-developed set of leadership skills, you may be eligible for a career in sports administration and operations. Professionals in this industry sector often work in high-level positions that require them to focus on the larger picture. They are responsible for developing a program and ensuring it reaches its long-term goals.

These are some job opportunities within the sports administration field:

  • Athletic Administrator
  • Athletic Director
  • Parks and Recreation Supervisor
  • Resort Manager

Coaching and Player Development Careers

Working with players, motivating them, and watching them improve can be incredibly rewarding. Fortunately, there are coaching and player development opportunities at every industry level, from amateur and youth sports to collegiate and professional sports. Coaches and player developers often have a hybrid work environment. Some work partially in the office setting while spending equal time on the field. Others, such as trainers or sports medicine professionals, work in a clinical setting and enjoy direct, hands-on work with athletes.

If you are interested in coaching and player development, consider some of these positions that you can pursue with a sports management degree:

  • Field Sports Manager
  • Head Coach
  • Athletic Trainer
  • Referee
  • Sports Medicine Professional

Non-profit Organizations and Community Outreach Careers

Anyone can benefit from participation in sports, and many non-profit organizations and community outreach centers work to improve the accessibility of sports. Non-profit organizations such as the Boys & Girls Club are well-known for their commitment to ensuring that all young people have an opportunity to participate in sports, as they believe it is crucial to their overall development and well-being.

If you are passionate about helping others, consider non-profit work. These non-profit positions can ensure everyone has the opportunity to stay active and become part of a team:

  • Community Relations Manager
  • Donor Relations
  • Volunteer Coordinator
  • Youth Sports Coordinator

Turn Your Passion for Sports Into a Rewarding Career With a Degree From Salem University

A career in the sports industry is a real possibility when you invest in a degree program that allows you to refine your skills and pursue your passion. At Salem University, we offer a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in Sports and Recreation Management and a Master of Business Administration in Sports and Recreation Management. Our undergraduate and graduate degree programs can provide you with advanced knowledge of the best business practices and current needs of the sports industry. Request more information about our sports management programs today.

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