An online MBA in sports management blends business knowledge and skills with concepts related directly to the sports industry. An MBA in sports management covers marketing, finance, and strategic planning, all applicable to the business side of sports.
Sports management MBAs prepare students to lead within sports organizations, companies, and programs. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects business occupations will experience a 7% increase in employment from 2018-2028. Advertising, promotion, and marketing managers -- essential to sports business profitability and success -- will experience comparable gains.
Here are the 10 Best Online MBA Programs in Sports Management:
- Azusa Pacific University - Azusa, CA
- Misericordia University - Dallas, PA
- East Carolina University - Greenville, NC
- Northwest Nazarene University - Nampa, ID
- Nova Southeastern University - Fort Lauderdale, FL
- St. Thomas Aquinas College - Sparkill, NY
- Bryan College - Dayton, TN
- Concordia University - Chicago - River Forest, IL
- Gardner-Webb University - Boiling Springs, NC
- Southern New Hampshire University - Manchester, NH
Top Online MBA Programs in Sports Management for 2020
|Rank||School||Location||Cost||Toggle||Logo||Tuition||% Receiving Financial Aid||Student Population||School Type||Description|
Azusa Pacific University
|Location Azusa , CA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 98||Student Population 10,095||Tuition $25,818||School Type Private||
Azusa Pacific University is a California Christian college with a strong business program. The 42- to 43-unit MBA offers eight specializations. Full-time students complete the online MBA in sports management in just 12 months.
The curriculum emphasizes the technical business expertise and practical skills MBA students must master to become ethical leaders. The MBA core covers topics such as operations management and corporate finance. Students review key aspects of sports management focusing on facility and event management and athletics and the law.
Participants complete two field experiences, which apply their learning in sports settings. The MBA features eight-week terms with six start dates each year. Learners may switch between online course delivery and on-campus programming as necessary. All students pay the same tuition, regardless of residency. Admission requires a minimum 2.5 GPA and GMAT scores.
|Location Dallas , PA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 100||Student Population 2,566||Tuition $28,080||School Type Private||
Founded by the Sisters of Mercy, Misericordia University, a Pennsylvania-based Catholic college, offers an MBA in sport management for nontraditional learners with busy schedules. Students complete the 36-credit MBA on a part-time basis in 2.5 years on average.
The program cultivates business professionals who can manage and lead organizations, advance to senior managerial positions, or start their own sports-focused businesses. The MBA core cultivates business professionals skilled in marketing management, accounting finance, and other areas that make them assets in any sports enterprise.
The specialization focuses on the business of sport, including how to master public relations, communications, and the media in sport. Students acquire marketing expertise and complete an integrative capstone that applies their learning to address authentic business challenges.
Misericordia offers affordable tuition and a tuition deferment plan. Admission to this top online MBA does not require GRE or GMAT scores.
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East Carolina University
|Location Greenville , NC||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 79||Student Population 28,718||Tuition $37,059||School Type Public||
For more than 75 years, the college of business at East Carolina University has empowered learners with the technical expertise for success in the business world. Its MBA with a certificate in sport management requires no prerequisite business experience, and students can choose between fully online and hybrid formats.
The program requires 18 courses, but many students receive waivers for the seven-course foundation. All students complete a common body of knowledge, which gives them expertise in areas such as financial management, management science, and marketing strategy.
Students use business electives to earn their certificates. They examine contemporary sport and the legal aspects of sport management, both required courses supplemented by two electives such as management and leadership in sport.
MBA students receive assistance from the career center and can attend the annual business student leadership conference for professional development and networking. Admission to this top MBA requires a minimum 2.7 GPA and GMAT scores.
Northwest Nazarene University
|Location Nampa , ID||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 100||Student Population 2,201||Tuition $19,635||School Type Private||
One of the best Christian colleges in the Northwest, Northwest Nazarene University in Nampa, Idaho, also manages one of the nation's best MBA programs. Faculty with extensive business experience teach the 33- to 48-credit program online, on campus, and in a blended format.
Faculty recently added a sports management emphasis, so students can learn to apply business theories and concepts in the lucrative field of sports management. The 48-credit MBA in sports management requires a core covering topics such management law and corporate finance. The nine-credit emphasis examines sports finance, economics, and management and compliance.
Students may opt for an internship to gain real experience in sports business settings. Enrollees take two courses at a time to complete the degree in 16 months. NNU charges lower tuition rates than other programs, making this one of the nation's most affordable master's in sports management. Admission requires school transcripts.
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Nova Southeastern University
|Location Fort Lauderdale , FL||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 100||Student Population 20,435||Tuition $14,800||School Type Private||
Nova Southeastern University maintains a significant impact on higher education in Florida, featuring a main campus in Fort Lauderdale and satellite campuses across the state. Distance learners can earn the 40- to 49-credit MBA with a major in sport revenue management.
Enrollees develop advanced business administrative skills through an MBA core. The business school may waive core courses in accounting, business finance, and business statistics for experienced students. The major focuses on how MBAs can boost sports organizations' profits.
Faculty teach students to use sponsorship deals, implement events and fundraisers, and develop new streams of income to accomplish that goal. A sport revenue generation internship provides an elective option for students to acquire hands-on experience. Students complete this online MBA in 18-21 months. NSU boasts affordability, charging the same online tuition for all MBA students. Admission requires a minimum 2.5 GPA.
St. Thomas Aquinas College
|Location Sparkill , NY||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 97||Student Population 2,000||Tuition $40,365||School Type Private||
The Dominican Sisters of Sparkill established St. Thomas Aquinas College as a teaching college. This New York-based school continues a tradition of academic excellence with its MBA program. Faculty developed this degree with working professionals in mind, offering an online program that allows students to continue working.
The 39-credit MBA in sport administration blends lectures with group discussions and projects completed with business organizations. Separate tracks accommodate the needs of business and nonbusiness majors. The MBA core for both degrees covers topics like managerial economics, operations management, and business analytics.
Aspiring sports managers use 15 credits to develop their expertise in areas such as sports finance, sports management analytics, and sports leadership and management. A seminar provides supervised fieldwork experience in the industry. Nine-week sessions accelerate degree completion. Admission to the master's in sports management requires a minimum 2.8 GPA, plus GMAT scores.
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|Location Dayton , TN||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 92||Student Population 1,363||Tuition $21,420||School Type Private||
Chartered in 1930, Bryan College develops Christian servant leaders. The Tennessee college administers an accelerated MBA in sports management, which students complete in just 14 months. Faculty teach this fully online 36-credit MBA from a Christian worldview.
The MBA core covers topics such as financial management and managerial economics. The rest of the curriculum mostly applies core administrative skills to sports business. Learners study sports finance, sports marketing, how to lead sports organizations, and sports facility and event management. All MBA students complete a course that examines a biblical worldview of management principles.
The MBA develops students' capacity for moral decision-making. Graduates leave the program equipped to use quantitative and analytical tools, and they can engage in strategic planning to achieve organizational outcomes. Bryan College offers competitive tuition rates and comprehensive financial aid. Admission to this top online MBA requires school transcripts.
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Concordia University - Chicago
|Location River Forest , IL||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 100||Student Population 6,005||Tuition $27,690||School Type Private||
Part of a nine-college system, Concordia University - Chicago is a private college with academic programs rooted in the school's Lutheran heritage. This MBA offers an extensive portfolio of specializations, including a one- or two-year MBA in sports management.
Faculty imbue the 36-credit curriculum with CUC's four pillars of knowledge, including social responsibility and critical thinking and an entrepreneurial mindset. The MBA core covers topics such as economics for managers and accounting for decision-making. Through 12 credits, MBA students master sports finance, economics, law, and using diversity to level the playing field.
Participants culminate every course with a business ePortfolio highlighting their talents in a completed project. Unlike many programs, CUC's MBA offers dual specialization options. All MBA students pay the same affordable tuition, regardless of residency. Admission requires a minimum 2.85 GPA and no GMAT scores.
|Location Boiling Springs , NC||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 100||Student Population 3,598||Tuition $21,024||School Type Private||
Situated on a 200-acre campus in Boiling Springs, North Carolina, Gardner-Webb University offers programs integrating Christian ethics and maximizing personalization. Students in the 30-credit MBA with an emphasis in sports management master key business functions such as accounting, marketing, and economics.
Students use two elective courses to complete specialized training in sports administration. They acquire real experience through internships and service opportunities. Faculty supplement lectures with projects and course simulations. A capstone course allows learners to apply their knowledge of the various functional areas in strategic management.
Business clubs such as the Student Investment Club and Entrepreneurial Action By All of Us provide professional developing and networking opportunities. Graduates leave the master's in sports management with fine-tuned skills in analysis, problem-solving, and communication. All students pay the same tuition rates, regardless of residency. Admission requires a minimum 2.5 GPA and GMAT scores.
Southern New Hampshire University
|Location Manchester , NH||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 80||Student Population 104,068||Tuition $22,572||School Type Private||
Southern New Hampshire University is one of the nation's fastest-growing colleges thanks to distance learners. SNHU offers an MBA accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs, featuring a large portfolio of specializations. Students complete the MBA in sports management in just 15 months.
The curriculum covers functional areas such as operations management and accounting and financial analysis. MBA students use nine credits to acquire advanced understanding of sports and society, how to manage sports organizations, and the internationalization of sport business. They supplement lectures through real projects, which may incorporate learners' professional experiences.
Graduates leave the program with a business plan they can market to potential employers and investors. This top online MBA allows learners to transfer up to 12 graduate credits. All students pay the same tuition, regardless of residency. Admission requires school transcripts and no GMAT/GRE scores.
Ohio Dominican University
|Location Columbus , OH||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 99||Student Population 1,716||Tuition $21,600||School Type Private||
Ohio Dominican University, a Catholic liberal arts college in the Dominican tradition, offers an MBA in sports management. This program emphasizes ethical leadership and strategic acumen. Students complete 36-40 semester hours, depending on whether they take foundation courses.
The MBA core builds on these foundation courses, empowering students with skills in quantitative business analysis and accounting for managers. To complete the concentration, students choose six credits from a variety of topics, including sports psychology, sports economics and finance, and sport marketing and consumer behavior.
Degree-seekers culminate the program with a project highlighting their expertise and career interests. Students complete this degree by taking one course at a time. Many earn this MBA in just 16 months. Admission to this top online MBA requires a minimum 2.75 GPA in their most recent 60 semester hours, plus GMAT scores.
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|Location Jackson , MS||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 100||Student Population 4,205||Tuition $20,340||School Type Private||
Belhaven University -- a Jackson, Mississippi college -- offers an online MBA that develops astute business professionals with Christian values. The 42-credit MBA with a sports administration concentration requires a comprehensive core of courses.
Students immerse themselves in training that covers many business functions, including marketing management, financial analysis, and quantitative decision-making. Through nine credits, learners examine current trends in sports administration and understand the intricacies of venue and event management and law and regulations for sports.
Faculty weave team project activities in each course, allowing students to develop problem-solving and teamwork skills. Learners transfer up to six credits into this degree, one of the best MBAs in the nation. All MBA students pay the same affordable tuition rates, regardless of their states of residency. Admission requires a minimum 2.8 GPA and GMAT scores for some students.
Lincoln Memorial University
|Location Harrogate , TN||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 100||Student Population 4,798||Tuition $15,450||School Type Private||
A private liberal arts college in Tennessee, Lincoln Memorial University provides learners with educational programs on a campus nestled in the Appalachian Mountain range. The MBA program offers a flexible curriculum, allowing online learners to choose a specialization and how many classes they want to complete per term.
The ACBSP-accredited MBA in sport management requires 36 credits. Faculty blend lectures with case studies, group work, and presentations. The curriculum develops professional competence in core business areas such as business strategizing and contemporary management and leadership.
The specialization focuses on the administration of athletics and sport marketing, giving learners hands-on experience through an internship in the sports industry. Students master analytical and quantitative techniques and hone critical-thinking and communication skills.
MBA students clock a significant number of hours doing consulting work with community businesses. Admission to this top online MBA requires a minimum 2.75 GPA and no GRE or GMAT scores.
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University of Colorado Denver/Anschutz Medical Campus
|Location Denver , CO||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 74||Student Population 25,645||Tuition $30,048||School Type Public||
CU Denver Business school has been creating business leaders for more than 30 years.
The MBA's portfolio of 15 concentrations makes this one of the most versatile MBAs in the country. However, faculty only offer five specializations online, making this a hybrid program for those who want to complete the MBA in sports and entertainment.
The 45-credit curriculum develops a core of competencies in business domains such as accounting, operations, and data analysis. Participants learn to apply these managerial skills to niche industries in sports and entertainment. All students complete an international business requirement through a class based in Denver or abroad.
MBA learners study in classrooms featuring a 12-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio, which fosters personalized learning. CU Denver's more than 300 business partnerships amplify networking and professional development opportunities. All students pay the same tuition, regardless of residency. Admission requires GMAT/GRE scores.
|Location Rome , GA||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 100||Student Population 1,452||Tuition $15,965||School Type Private||
Shorter University is a Christian liberal arts college located in Rome, Georgia. Students complete Shorter's 31-credit MBA online in just 12 months. The MBA in sport management teaches students to apply advanced administrative skills, such as marketing, finance, and human resources to the sports business.
Enrollees begin their program with an orientation course, which fosters success in graduate school by familiarizing students with program format and resources, such as library research and computer research tools. A research methods course teaches students to collect, analyze, and use data to resolve business problems.
During their capstone, students apply their learning to create a business plan, helping a company enhance competitiveness in the sports industry. Applicants submit school transcripts for admission to this top online MBA.
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|Location Boca Raton , FL||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 92||Student Population 3,093||Tuition $27,380||School Type Private||
Lynn University, a small liberal arts college in Florida, equips students with applied skills for their professions. Lynn offers a 37-credit MBA in sports management. Learners study alongside other working professionals to complete the degree fully online in as little as one year.
These students acquire a breadth of experience in managerial accounting, financial management, and other core areas. Coursework helps develop competent sports executives, knowledgeable about sports business management, the legal aspects of athletics, and contemporary issues in intercollegiate and professional sports.
Few MBA programs offer all incoming MBA students iPads to help facilitate their connectivity and learning. Students benefit from small class sizes and receive career counseling to further their careers. Admission to this degree, one of the nation's best MBAs, requires a minimum 2.5 GPA and no GRE/GMAT scores.
Franklin Pierce University
|Location Rindge , NH||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 100||Student Population 2,178||Tuition $25,935||School Type Private||
New Hampshire-based Franklin Pierce University operates several learning centers and a virtual campus, offering maximum learning flexibility. The MBA in sports management enrolls learners interested in amateur, intercollegiate, or professional sports careers. Students enroll in the program on a part- or full-time basis to build expertise as advanced administrators.
These students learn about the financial aspects of running a business through courses examining economics, marketing, and financial management. Students learn to succeed as managers as they delve into operations management and quantitative and research techniques for leaders.
Faculty examine how change management applies to sports organizations and how successful sports administrators manage facilities, media relations, and technology in the sports industry. Participants learn to immediately apply concepts learned in the workplace. All students pay the same tuition, regardless of residency. Admission to this top MBA requires a minimum 2.8 GPA.
|Location Jefferson City , TN||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 100||Student Population 2,560||Tuition $17,100||School Type Private||
Carson-Newman University ensures that its programs align with its Christian values. The 36-credit MBA in sports management continues that tradition, cultivating ethical leaders with fine-tuned analytical thinking skills. The program's first semester focuses on leadership and the financial aspect of business administration, including accounting and financial management.
During the next two semesters, learners build on these skills by developing their competencies as marketers, entrepreneurs, and strategic managers. Faculty devote the final semester to the contemporary issues managers face in sports management. They also cover how to build brands, deploying their knowledge of sports psychology.
Carson-Newman may consider up to nine graduate transfer credits for this MBA. All students pay the same affordable tuition, regardless of residency. Admission to this top online MBA requires a minimum 2.5 GPA.
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|Location Tiffin , OH||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 93||Student Population 3,045||Tuition $22,400||School Type Private||
Tiffin University developed an MBA in sports management, giving learners practical experience through mentorship with professionals in the field. Students complete the 32- to 36-credit curriculum in 14 months if they enroll on a full-time basis.
Faculty blend lectures, case studies, and research to empower learners with business proficiencies in areas such as finance and strategic management. Courses on fundraising, business strategizing, and personnel management all focus on the world of sports.
The required supervised mentorship separates this top online MBA from many others. During this 200-hour experience, students receive practical experience within athletic departments, sport franchises, and facilities, and at other organizations with links to TU. The program accepts transfer credits to accelerate degree completion. TU has not increased tuition rates in five years, and all students pay the same tuition regardless of residency. Admission requires a minimum 3.0 GPA.
Fort Hays State University
|Location Hays , KS||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 97||Student Population 15,523||Tuition $13,600||School Type Public||
With a strong virtual college, Fort Hays State University stands as one of the Midwest's top colleges for accessible education with a global reach. FHSU's online MBA in health and human performance/sports management builds on key pillars of business operations, with best practices in sports leadership management.
All students complete the 34-credit MBA core, covering fundamentals such as strategic management and corporate finance. They develop their sports industry expertise with advanced knowledge of legal issues; marketing, planning, and promotion; and how to effectively manage and use sports facilities. Faculty complement lectures with collaborative group projects and internships.
Learners may pursue a graduate teaching assistantship on-campus to build further experience. Students enroll on a full- or part-time basis. All students pay the same tuition regardless of residency. MBA requirements for admission include GMAT or GRE scores.
University of Southern Mississippi
|Location Hattiesburg , MS||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 95||Student Population 14,509||Tuition $15,609||School Type Public||
Southern Miss celebrates a rich 110-year history, which includes an expanding virtual college. The MBA in sports event security management, accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, teaches students standard business principles to manage operations, plus the advanced skills required of security professionals.
The MBA builds on a partnership between the business college and the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security, a research institution established by Southern Miss to address sports security risks and threats. The program allows learners to acquire real experience by partnering with experts across the country.
The curriculum covers business topics such as managerial accounting and organizational behavior and leadership. The concentration delves into sports security management, threat and risk assessment of sport venues, and sport event emergency response planning. Participants learn to apply the latest technology solutions used by experts in the field.
The military-friendly school allows online MBA students to pay in-state tuition. Admission to this top online MBA requires GMAT or GRE scores.View School Profile
Southeast Missouri State University
|Location Cape Girardeau , MO||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 96||Student Population 11,071||Tuition $10,923||School Type Public||
A state college since 1873, Southeast Missouri State University manages a business program that ranks in the world's top 5%. The MBA in sport management requires 33 credits, which students complete online without needing to visit the school's campus in Cape Girardeau.
The curriculum equips aspiring business professionals to manage and lead sports organizations; interact with diverse customers, employers, and suppliers; and deploy the latest technology for efficient production, controls, and communications. They cultivate well-honed, strategic decision-making, marketing, and cost analysis skills. Faculty also examine the design and operation of sport facilities.
Participants apply their skills when they complete research projects in sport management. The business school may award credit for prior experience. Its career services center provides coaching with resume development, job search strategies, and practice interviews.
Admission to this MBA in sports management requires a minimum 3.0 GPA, foundational business courses, and GMAT scores.
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University of West Alabama
|Location Livingston , AL||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 91||Student Population 5,200||Tuition $14,157||School Type Public||
The University of West Alabama is one of the state's oldest colleges. UWA offers a one-year online MBA with several concentrations. The 33-credit MBA in sports management requires a basic core, which examines the proficiencies business professionals must master at the MBA level. These include managerial accounting and financial management.
A notable course, not always offered by MBA programs, focuses on the efficient use of emerging technologies. The concentration prepares MBA graduates with skills in deploying managerial skills in professional sports, collegiate athletics, and health-related fitness areas.
They choose nine credits from several available electives, covering topics such as accounting and economics in sport and organization and administration in human performance. Students transfer up to nine credits of graduate-level courses into this master's in sports management. All learners pay the same tuition rates, regardless of residency. MBA admission requirements include a minimum 2.75 GPA and GMAT scores.
Concordia University - Ann Arbor
|Location Ann Arbor , MI||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 100||Student Population 1,197||Tuition $28,860||School Type Private||
Concordia University - Ann Arbor represents one of nine colleges in the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod system. The MBA program trains business professionals to lead with Christian principles and ethics.
The 39-credit MBA in sport and entertainment business provides a well-rounded business education in areas such as corporate finance, accounting, and managerial economics and econometric. Faculty ensure MBAs leave the program knowing how to use software to design and manage business projects. Students choose five courses to complete the concentration.
Degree-seekers receive hands-on experience when they participate in intensive field experiences under the guidance of industry partners. A portfolio developed during the MBA documents learners' talents, an invaluable marketing tool for prospective employers. All students pay the same tuition, regardless of residency, and CUAA offers scholarships specifically for nontraditional learners. Admission to this top online MBA requires school transcripts and no graduate entrance exams.
University of the Southwest
|Location Hobbs , NM||Tuition $$$$$||% Receiving Financial Aid 100||Student Population 951||Tuition $22,500||School Type Private||
At the University of the Southwest in New Mexico, MBA students learn to apply their advanced knowledge of business and industry to the sports arena. When they enroll in the fully online MBA in sport management and recreation, degree-seekers complete a 36-credit curriculum developing their professional competence as leaders, financial managers, and operations strategists.
Faculty focus on management in sport and recreational organizations and programming for sport and recreational service organizations. Learners also examine matters regarding law and liability and the use of social psychology in sports and recreation. A capstone course focuses on organizational design and strategy.
Tuition includes free digital textbooks and a laptop. Applicants with military training and relevant career training may earn prior learning credits, which allow learners to complete this degree in 12 months. Admission to this top online MBA requires a minimum 3.0 GPA.
How We Rank Online MBA Programs
Want to know how we create our rankings? We assess schools based on academic quality, affordability, online flexibility, and student success.
Quality (30% of total score)
|A low student-to-faculty ratio, a wide breadth of specialized MBA programs, and a high retention rate of students returning after their first year are all indicators of a quality university.|
Affordability (10% of total score)
|The amount of financial aid offered factors into a school's net price; this, paired with a low loan default rate, indicates that students may find a school's tuition within their budget.|
Online Flexibility (20% of total score)
|Scores for online flexibility focus on schools that have a high percentage of fully online students, but consideration is also given to schools that enroll partially online students using hybrid programs.|
Student Success (40% of total score)
|Both strong hallmarks of student success, we look for programs with high graduation rates whose students go on to have higher-than-average median earnings.|
What Is an MBA in Sports Management?
Top online MBAs in sports management train learners to apply business concepts to the sports industry. An online MBA in sports management prepares business professionals for managerial positions within sports organizations. Graduates with sports management MBAs can advance into leadership roles with sports companies and teams.
The BLS expects management professions to experience an estimated 7% increase in employment from 2018-2028. Advertising, promotions, and marketing managers -- including those in sports-related positions -- can expect nearly 22,000 new positions in the field from 2018-2028, as well.
Why Should You Get an Online MBA in Sports Management?
An online MBA in sports management builds business acumen as it relates to the sports industry. Current sports and sporting goods representatives gain knowledge and skills in concepts such as accounting, finance, and marketing. Business professionals also gain insights into the application of business theories, practices, and policies in the sports industry.
Individuals with a passion for sports benefit from MBAs in sports management by building an understanding of the industry's business side. Coaches and players can earn sports management MBAs to move into managerial roles with sports organizations. This degree also prepares individuals to work as sports marketers, advertisers, agents, and promoters.
An MBA in sports management facilitates careers for athletic directors at interscholastic and postsecondary institutions. The BLS estimates positions for postsecondary education administrators will grow by 7% from 2018-2028. Postsecondary education administrators earned a median annual salary exceeding $94,000 in 2018 -- far above the $33,780 athletic coaches and scouts earn each year.
What Can You Do With an MBA in Sports Management?
- General/Operations Manager
General/operations managers oversee daily business activities in companies and organizations. They supervise personnel and physical structures, interacting with executives, employees, and clients to ensure efficacy and efficiency. These managers hire and train new employees, enforce policies and procedures, and supervise inventories as needed. They often provide detailed, data-driven reports to regional or corporate managers.
Entry-level general/operations managers, according to PayScale, earn a median annual salary approaching $47,000. With 20 years or more in the position, general operations managers earn more than $80,000 annually.
- Revenue Manager
Revenue managers develop strategic plans for their organizations' profitability. They establish revenue goals, providing advice and guidance to finance and sales colleagues in the process. Revenue managers may oversee teams of budget and financial analysts, as well. Many revenue managers work in the hospitality industry, providing services to hotels, resorts, and sports-related facilities. Sports revenue managers supervise pricing, scheduling, and promotions at stadiums, golf courses, and other sports locations.
Tasked with revenue oversight, revenue managers hire, train, and dismiss employees. They work closely with human resources to coordinate cost-effective on-boarding, evaluation, and termination practices.
- Director of Operations
PayScale reports that directors of operations earn a median salary of over $91,000. Directors of operations supervise daily activities in organizations or at specific locations. They develop and implement employee and operational policies and processes in line with organizational goals.
Directors of operations manage budgets and timelines as they relate to the production of goods or presentation of services. Operations managers at sports facilities focus on game and event policies and procedures. They also work with teams and vendors and monitor facility safety.
- Financial Manager
Expected to see a 16% growth in employment from 2018-2028, financial managers oversee an organization's financial activities. They produce financial reports, monitor trends, and provide investment guidance to meet short- and long-term organizational goals. Financial managers in the sporting industry may work with individuals and organizations alike. These professionals review contracts, set up marketing deals, and oversee personal budgets for clients, while also arranging loans and financing within larger sports-related companies.
- Advertising, Promotions, and Marketing Manager
Advertising, promotions, and marketing managers work with sales agents, artists, and marketing analysts to sell goods and services. They supervise budgets, develop strategic campaigns, and assess market research to meet consumer demand.
Advertising, promotions, and marketing managers engage with digital, print, and visual media. Top industries for advertising, promotions, and marketing managers include public relations and information services. Within the sporting industry, these professionals focus on events, team and player image, and brand development.
Online MBA in Sports Management Curriculum
Curricula within online MBAs in sports management degrees vary by institution and department. Core coursework emphasizes business concepts such as finance, strategic planning, and marketing. Sports management classes integrate business with sport, exploring topics like facility and event management, sports law and ethics, and sports analytics.
Sports Facility and Event Management
Sports facility and event management coursework emphasizes principles and processes, alongside facility design, risk management, and marketing. Students also explore the role of sports facilities and events from economic, social, and cultural perspectives.
Sports Law and Ethics
Coursework in sports law and ethics examines regulations, policies, and best practices within the sports industry. Topics include intellectual property, sports broadcasting, and diversity in sport.
By emphasizing data collection, assessment, and evaluation, sports analytics coursework trains students to effectively analyze player and team performance, sales and marketing, and administrative practices in a sports setting.
See More Top MBA Programs
How to Choose the Right Online MBA in Sports Management Program
Sports management master's degrees and master's degrees in sports administration and leadership apply a multidisciplinary approach to sport. In contrast, MBA students focus on the sports industry through a business lens. Learners earning MBAs in sports management apply advanced business concepts like marketing, finance, and data analytics in sports organizations.
Online MBAs in sports management offer convenient, flexible options for students earning graduate degrees in the discipline. Traditional MBAs take roughly two years to complete. Students pursuing accelerated online sports management degrees can complete their programs in as few as 18 months.
Part-time students benefit from online coursework, as well. Working professionals and learners with busy schedules can take courses on a timeline that meets their needs and goals, earning their MBAs in sports management over several years.
When choosing an online MBA in sports management, students should consider coursework and degree requirements, such as classes, internships, and research requirements. Many programs allow students to complete the practical components of an MBA at their current place of employment.
An online MBA in sports management may also provide a more affordable path for learners. Colleges and universities offering the same online tuition for resident and nonresident students eliminate potentially prohibitive tuition expenses. Students also avoid on-campus costs, including room and board, commuting, and parking.
Scholarships for Sports Management MBA Programs
Students earning sports management MBAs can apply for financial aid available to all students. Loans, scholarships, fellowships, and grants provide essential support for college and university students. Business administration and sports management learners enjoy additional funding opportunities, as well, designed for individuals specializing in those fields.
Mary Elizabeth Lockwood Beneventi MBA Scholarship
Who Can Apply: Awarded by the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Mary Elizabeth Lockwood Beneventi MBA Scholarship supports students earning business administration degrees from accredited colleges or universities. Applicants need a minimum 3.25 GPA to apply.
Amount: $2,000Apply for Scholarship
Janet B. Parks NASSM Research Grant
Who Can Apply: The Janet B. Parks NASSM Research Grant supports members advancing scholarship in the sport management discipline. Applicants must hold membership to the North American Society for Sport Management for two years before receiving the award and submit a formal proposal for consideration.
Amount: VariesApply for Scholarship
Jim McKay Graduate Scholarship
Who Can Apply: The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) provides funding to one female and one male student each year who demonstrate potential in sport communication or public relations or show interest in contributing to the sports industry. Applicants need a minimum 3.5 GPA, must be in their final season of NCAA eligibility, and should demonstrate leadership, superior character, and integrity.
Amount: $10,000Apply for Scholarship
National Black MBA Association Scholarships
Who Can Apply: Partnered with academic institutions around the world, NBMBA offers scholarships to support educational and career opportunities for historically underrepresented students, entrepreneurs, and professionals. Application requirements vary by scholarship.
Amount: VariesApply for Scholarship
Ethnic Minority and Women’s Enhancement Graduate Scholarship
Who Can Apply: To support opportunities among minority and female candidates in intercollegiate athletics, the NCAA awards 26 ethnic minority and women’s enhancement graduate scholarships each year. Applicants must plan to enroll or be enrolled in a sports administration-related graduate program. Additional application requirements include a minimum 3.2 GPA and demonstration of undergraduate distinction in the classroom and community alike.
Amount: $10,000Apply for Scholarship
Professional Organizations for Sports Management
Professional organizations for sports management unite individuals from the industry's many facets. Those working in sports organizations make connections with their counterparts in sporting goods companies, educational institutions, and research positions. Professional organizations for sports management also provide valuable continuing education programs, job boards, and advocacy opportunities for members.
- North American Society for Sports ManagementNASSM unites sport, leisure, and recreation professionals to promote, stimulate, and strengthen the sport management discipline. Members receive discounts on NASSM conference fees, bimonthly and biannual publications, and job resources. It also offers awards, grants, and advocacy opportunities for members.
- Sports Marketing AssociationThe SMA, founded in 2002, serves practitioners, academics, and students by developing and expanding knowledge in sport marketing. Alongside publications and discounts on conference fees, SMA hosts offers awards, honors, and partner benefits to members.
- National Association of Collegiate Directors of AthleticsEstablished in 1965, the NACDA promotes educational opportunities and fosters networking among individuals in the field of athletics administration. The association holds an annual conference and intern program, and offers job information. The NACDA Foundation provides clinics, workshops, seminars, and scholarship opportunities to members.
- National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators AssociationPreserving, enhancing, and promoting education-based athletics, the NIAAA provides professional development and networking opportunities to interscholastic athletic administrators. Members gain access to quarterly publications, discounts on educational programs and events, and career resources.
- National Sporting Goods AssociationServing retailers, manufacturers, sales agents, and industry associates, the NSGA serves as a repository of industry contacts, resources, and services. Founded in 1927, the association offers research materials, marketing tools, educational programs, and business solutions resources to members.