Sport Management

The sports industry is a demanding and exciting field that calls for leaders who love the game. The Nichols sport management program prepares you to lead in a growing and competitive field.

Our sport management faculty have years of experience in marketing, coaching, and team management. Under these experts, you’ll learn about:

  • Governance and management of amateur and professional sports
  • Sport facility management
  • Event management
  • High school and collegiate athletics administration
  • Sponsorship and sales

Every sport management student goes through an internship, gaining key experience and a competitive edge in the market. Recent students have interned at Madison Square Garden, the New York Rangers, the Boston Red Sox, and the New York Knicks, just to name a few.

Whatever area of sport management you choose, Nichols will prepare you for a meaningful career.

The sport management degree program at Nichols College has received specialized accreditation through the Commission on Sport Management Accreditation (COSMA) located in Arlington, VA, USA. The sport management program in the following degree is accredited by COSMA:

  • Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in Sport Management

COSMA Annual Report (PDF)
COSMA Program Information Profile (PDF)

Leading the Way

Tim Smith ’12 Arizona Diamondbacks, Account Executive

My job is a full-time, salaried position that consists of selling season ticket packages, suites, and individual game tickets. I meet with clients on a daily basis and take them on tours of the ballpark. The Sport Management class showed me not only how the market works in the sports industry, but also how to market myself which was helpful for me when I trying to get a job and separate myself from the competition.

Jessica Porter ’08 Orange Bowl Committee, Account Executive

Because of their experience in sports organizations, my professors were able to take the textbook information and apply it to their real life experiences. They taught us in a way we could understand rather than just having us read out of a book.

Courses & Requirements

Sport Management majors must complete 121 credit hours (approximately 40 courses), including courses from the foundation and business core curricula, focused electives and these required specialization courses:

Required Courses

SMGT 251 Intro to Sport Management

This introductory-level course provides an overview to the structure of the sport industry and highlights the scope and variety of potential career opportunities. The value of professional management to sport organizations will also be emphasized. Attention will be given to the issues facing sport organizations and the use of management techniques to solve business-related problems. The development of effective communication skills and networking skills, will be stressed through class presentations and projects and assignments.

SMGT 297 Sport Practicum

The practicum is designed to provide students with the opportunity to gain first hand experience in the business of sport. The course is structured to include weekly interaction and discussions with the professor which will focus on the student?s experiences and the practical application of management principles. Students are required to undertake 8 - 10 hours per week (throughout the semester) in an industry setting of their choice.

SMGT 352 Sport in Society

This course examines the role of sports in North American culture and in a global context. The pervasiveness of sport in all areas of society will be investigated from a sociological perspective. Analysis of current issues impacting informal, organized, and professional sport will be considered. Attention will also be given to common characteristics within sport and society, including societal values and sport, social problems and sport, deviance, violence, politics, religion, the economy, mass media, ethnicity, nationality, and others.

SMGT 367 Sport Marketing

This course provides the student with basic knowledge and understanding of sport marketing and promotions for intercollegiate, recreational, and professional sport. Marketing?s relationship to products and sponsorships, licensing, public relations, media, and special events will be emphasized. Students will get hands-on experience with database management and survey research.

Prerequisites: MKTG-202, and SMGT-251.

SMGT 368 Sport Finance

This course is designed to provide the prospective sport manager with an overview of the major financial issues facing sport managers and the sport industry. An analysis of the following areas will be undertaken: sources of revenue for sport organizations and leagues, a comparison of public and private sector funding in sports, and investment of public resources into private sporting facilities. Also, budgeting and investment comparisons will be discussed.

Prerequisites: FIN-203, and SMGT-251.

SMGT 392 Sport Management Internship

The internship requirement is considered to be one of the most critical components of the Sport Management Program. Students will undertake a 12 - 15 week, full-time (40 hours per week) supervised internship during the summer following the junior year, or during the fall or spring semesters of the senior year. This opportunity is expected to enhance the student’s academic experiences via a required industry analysis paper, a research project, weekly logs and a portfolio, as well as provide additional work experience and networking opportunities. Internship experiences may take place in any of the varied sport industry settings. Students may obtain internships in any region of the country and in some cases may receive financial compensation. (9 credits)

Prerequisites: SMGT-251, SMGT-367 SMGT-368, and FIN-203.

SMGT 459 Sport Law

The application of legal principles is considered in relation to professional and amateur sports. Emphasis is placed on tort liabilities and risk management. Specific topics include negligence, duty of care, intentional torts, crowd management, contracts and constitutional law. Actual court cases relating to these principles are examined.

Prerequisites: LSB-227, and SMGT-251.

SMGT 480 Sport Management Seminar

The sport management seminar is designed to provide an overview of the current and critical issues faced by sport organizations. Emphasis will be placed on the issues confronting sport managers as they operate businesses while also presenting the students with an understanding of the basic tenets of sport policy and governance. The course will use case studies to explore and analyze current issues and concepts from earlier course work in the field. A senior thesis, focusing on the student?s area of interest, will be required. Students will be introduced to research methodologies and encouraged to apply statistical analysis to their work. Students will be guided through the process of designing individual works, conducting tests/measurements, and analysis and interpretation of results. The seminar is designed and recognized as a writing intensive course.

Prerequisites: SMGT-352, SMGT-367 and SMGT-368. FIN-203 & SMGT-251 Required


SMGT 397 Sport Practicum

The practicum is designed to provide students with the opportunity to gain first hand experience in the business of sport. The course is structured to include weekly interaction and discussions with the professor which will focus on the student?s experiences and the practical application of management principles. Students are required to undertake 8 - 10 hours per week (throughout the semester) in an industry setting of their choice.

Prerequisites: SMGT-251, and SMGT-352.

SMGT 460 Athletics Administration

This course is designed to introduce the student to the management issues faced by administrators within collegiate and high school athletics departments. Students will develop an understanding of issues such as governance, scheduling, NCAA and conference compliance, gender equity and Title IX, conference membership issues, departmental structure, and organizational goals in athletics, legal issues, and operating procedures.

Prerequisites: SMGT-251, and SMGT-352.

SMGT 462 Sport Communications

This course is designed to introduce the students to the role of effective communication in the sport industry. The nature and function of communication will be examined in a variety of settings. Emphasis will be placed on interpersonal communications, public relations, mass media relations, public speaking, and innovative technology.

Prerequisites: BCOM-247, SMGT-251 and SMGT-352.

SMGT 463 Sport Event Management

This course is designed to provide a hands-on, practical involvement in a major sport event. Students will be assigned to committees for which they will plan, organize, publicize and manage all aspects of event operations during the semester. A required component of the course will include a commitment to work with the actual event.

Prerequisites: SMGT-251, and SMGT-352.

SMGT 464 Sponsorship and Sales

This course is designed to offer hands-on, practical experience in creating and implementing a sponsorship and sales plan. Groups will create marketing surveys, develop sponsorship proposals, identify and contact potential buyers, conduct negotiation and sales, learn activation techniques, and evaluate sponsor packages.

Prerequisites: SMGT-251, and SMGT-352.

SMGT 469 Coaching Adm & Mgmt

This course emphasizes coaching concepts and strategies necessary to the coaching profession and crucial in the development of quality coaches and sport educators. Planning, preparation, demonstration, explanation, evaluation, and feedback are important skills for coaching and in building a successful athletic program. This course will teach students to analyze, research, and evaluate the careers of sport educators and coaches. Students will examine different aspects of coaching and teaching including philosophies and techniques. It will provide the student with a basic understanding of coaching on all levels: youth, elementary, high school, college and professional. Additional emphasis will be placed on recruiting, tryouts, pre and post-season development, conditioning, practice planning, scouting, game management, motivation, and ethics.

Prerequisites: SMGT-251, and SMGT-352.

SMGT 470 Special Topics in Sport Mgmt

This course is offered on an occasional basis and addresses topics and themes of special interest not covered in the standard course offerings in sport management.


  • Tim Liptrap

    Tim Liptrap
    Associate Professor of Sport Management / Sport Management Program Chair

  • Alice Mullen

    Alice Mullen
    Faculty Associate, Sport Management / Head Womens Basketball Coach

  • Charlyn Robert

    Charlyn Robert
    Director of Athletics / Student Services Center – Associate Dean

  • Andrew Smith

    Andrew Smith
    Assistant Professor of Sport Management & History / Chair, Undergraduate Adult Education Program

  • Brian Wendry

    Brian Wendry
    Adjunct Professor