Though many have dreams of playing professional sports, not everyone is born with talent needed to make those dreams come true. However, there are many paths in the sports management field that can be followed depending on which degree you obtained in university. While some careers may not seem as glamorous as a professional athlete, the game still depends on key positions in sports management.
Coaching is a career path that puts one right on the filed without actually playing. Some coaches start out as professional athletes who can't play anymore due to injury, or who retire. Other coaches aimed for this career in college and took the required courses in sports management and on-the-job experience. The median annual wage of coaches in May 2008 was $28,340, with the highest 10 percent making over $62,000 annually. Professional sports coaches have the highest salary range, followed by colleges and universities, then recreation industries.
Athletic directors are in charge of coordinating all of the sports at a particular school. Their duties include managing coaches, players, parental associations as well as marketers. An athletic director is also responsible for scheduling the use of facilities and transportation of athletic events, fundraising and publicity. As of May 2011, the median annual salary for an athletic director in a higher education environment was $98,683.
An athletic trainer is responsible for keeping members of the athletic team and staff in top physical condition. This includes working with staff and athletes on strength training, conditioning, physical health and even hygiene. Dependant on experience and training, a head athletic trainer in a college environment has a median annual salary of $52,746.
Recruiters and Scouts
Recruiters and scouts on the payroll of a college or professional team are responsible for finding and acquiring new talent, contacting recruits, evaluating skill of current and new players, and building relationships throughout the industry. The salary for recruiters and scouts is commission-based or an annual median salary of approximately $50,000 for scouts working in higher education facilities.