Online Sports Management Degree Programs

Degree Subject

Online Sports Management Degree Programs

The sports industry is a vast multibillion-dollar industry that is constantly growing and evolving. Effective and efficient sports management professionals are required for successful operation of sports organizations. Online sports management degree programs provide students with a well-balanced education on the business perspectives of the sports industry and prepare students to lead a successful career in a variety of career fields. Students learn the essential knowledge, abilities, and skills to manage and operate sports businesses and organizations. Read more about online sports management degree programs.

Some Stats

In 2006, athletes, coaches, umpires, and other related workers held around 253,000 jobs, with athletes holding 18,000 jobs, coaches and scouts holding 217,000 jobs, and umpires, referees, and other sports personnel holding 19,000 jobs. About 1 in 5 employees in these positions were self-employed (1). According to, individuals with a Bachelor of Science in sports management earned average annual salaries from about $29,000 to $42,000 depending on position and field (2).

Employment Outlook

Employment outlook for sports management jobs varies greatly among disciplines. Employment of athletes, coaches, umpires, and related workers is expected to grow faster than average for all professions from 2006 to 2016, increasing 15% and adding 38,000 new jobs (2). Athletic coaches with less than 1 year experience earned average annual salaries between $20,719 and $31,538 (3).


Sports management is a large field and students can choose a specific specialty to focus their academic study on and pursue a meaningful career. Sports management specialties include marketing, sports business management, business administration, sport psychology, sport commerce, event management, sports facility management, sporting goods, high school and college athletics, physical education, and sports leagues and organizations. Students interested in a specific specialty should select a school that offers a strong program in that particular area.

What to Expect

Sports management degree programs provide students with instruction on the fundamental concepts, theories, and organization of sports management. Students gain a sound understanding of basic business concepts and how to apply them to the sports industry. Undergraduate sports management degree programs require general education courses in English, composition, mathematics, science, art, and electives. Core coursework varies by program, but many programs require courses in fundamentals of sports management, economics, accounting, finance, sports management law, fitness, public relations, recreation management, sport marketing, event management, sport and society, ethics, communication. Graduate degrees focus on more in-depth management topics and prepare students for research and teaching positions.

The End Result

Sports management degrees open the door to a variety of career options in many different fields. Sports management professionals often pursue positions in academic institutions, major and minor sports franchises, sporting goods companies, and independent sports marketing and management firms. Graduate degrees prepare students to transition into more advanced positions. Career opportunities for sports management degree graduates include:

A career in sports management will be rewarding for individuals strongly interested in sports and applying management principles. Sports management professionals must have an aptitude for business and marketing and be able to communicate and negotiate effectively. They must also have strong political instinct and be very motivated to succeed. Sports management professionals are involved in planning, organizing, leading, and evaluating activities in sports organizations and achieving goals and objectives.

(1) SOURCE: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook 2008-2009 Edition
(2) SOURCE:, Salary Survey for Degree: Bachelor of Science, Sports Management
(3) SOURCE:, Salary Survey Report