Sport Administration Catalog

Richard J. Wehle School of Business
Sport Administration (MS)

Sport Administration On campus and Online

Program Director: Shawn O’Rourke
Faculty: Nicolas Lorgnier

Degree: Master of Science


The master’s degree program in sport administration provides graduate candidates with the skills needed to effectively manage a wide range of sport-related enterprises including intercollegiate athletics, amateur and professional sports, sport-marketing firms, special-event management, and facility management. It is designed for students who are currently in or plan to enter professional staff and management positions in the public and private sectors.

The sport administration program also includes a business management core of courses in accounting, economics, statistics and management offered in the AACSB-accredited M.B.A. program of the Richard J. Wehle School of Business.


Applicants must meet the general requirements for admission to graduate work in education. In addition, applicants must submit two letters of reference, a resume and a written essay describing their background in sport activities and career goals.


Program Details

Sport Administration Core
MSA 520Leadership in Sport3
MSA 550Strategic Sport Marketing3
MSA 560Moral and Ethics in Sport3
MSA 611Risk Management and Contract Negotiation3
MSA 660Sport Finance and Business3
MSA 799Internship in Sport Administration6
MSA 899Practica for International Students0
Business Management Core
ACC 505Financial Accounting3
ECO 503Statistics for Managers with Excel3
ECO 606Managerial Economics3
MSA 613Organizational Behaviors3
Specialization/Concentration Area
Select any three electives:9
MSA 530
Managing Sport Facilities
MSA 565
Sport Communication
MSA 621
Rule Compliance Intercollegiate Athletics
MSA 631
Intercollegiate Athletics
MSA 641
Professional Sport
MSA 650
Special Events
Total Credits42

Online Sport Administration Curriculum

MSA 520Leadership in Sport3
MSA 550Strategic Sport Marketing3
MSA 560Moral and Ethics in Sport3
MSA 565Sport Communication3
MSA 611Risk Management and Contract Negotiation3
MSA 621Rule Compliance Intercollegiate Athletics3
or MSA 530 Managing Sport Facilities
MSA 631Intercollegiate Athletics3
MSA 641Professional Sport3
MSA 660Sport Finance and Business3
MSA 799Internship in Sport Administration6
Total Credits33

33 credits are required

Learning Goals & Objectives

Learning Goal 1 (Knowledge-Observed in Writing)

Candidates in the GR Sport Management programs will demonstrate content and professional knowledge necessary for successful performance in their field.

Students will:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the common principles of sport management; sport leadership; sport operations management; event and venue management; and sport governance.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of finance, and the economics of sport as they fit into national and international economies.

Learning Goal 2 (Knowledge – Observed Skills and Dispositions)

Candidates in the GR Sport Management programs will demonstrate professional skills and dispositions necessary for successful performance in their field.

Students will:

  • Demonstrate the ability to communicate with various public and professional audiences through written texts, oral discussions, and multi-media presentations.
  • Demonstrate skill in the application of the basic principles of interpersonal and mass communications through interaction with internal and external sport publics.
  • Demonstrate essential management and business related skills in the work place.
  • Demonstrate skillful operation of technology and assessment related tools that may be applied to various sport management settings.

Learning Goal 3 (Service)

Candidates in the GR Sport Management programs will demonstrate willingness to use their skills to benefit and serve society. Within the contexts of their work, candidates promote authentic learning, social and emotional development, and a commitment to social justice in environments that foster respect for diversity and the dignity of all.

Students will:

  • Demonstrate understanding of the critical social, psychological, and philosophical base issues of the sport environment.
  • Demonstrate understanding of moral and ethical implications of sport policy and strategies.

Learning Goal 4 (Professionalism)

Candidates in the GR Sport Management program will demonstrate self-reflection as a habit of mind, continuously assessing and refining their professional practice as they construct a rich repertoire of research-based knowledge, skills, and attitudes for effective performance ensuring that all students and/or clients have optimal opportunities to learn and grow.

Students will:

  • Learn to ask challenging, probing questions and seek thorough, well-rounded answers.
  • Act with integrity and fairness to ensure a professional system of accountability for every student’s academic and social success and will model principles of self-awareness, reflective practice, transparency, and ethical behavior.

Learning Goal 5 (Leadership)

Candidates in the graduate Sport Management programs will become adept at applying their acquired knowledge in the process of evaluating their own professional performance and decision-making with respect to its impact on students and/or clients, organizations, and wider community.

Students will:

  • Demonstrate the ability to assume leadership roles in various professional settings and work effectively with diverse groups and organizations seeking to improve the performance of those they lead.
  • Understand and can anticipate and assess emerging trends and initiatives in the sport environment.


MSA 520 Leadership in Sport 3 Credits

This course will examine the concepts relating to efficient management and leadership of the sport industry. Emphasis will be placed on principles and techniques of management relating to programs, facilities, special events and personnel.

MSA 530 Managing Sport Facilities 3 Credits

This course is designed to provide learning experiences in the administrative tasks of planning, managing, and operating various types of athletic facilities. Financial, legal, and safety issues relevant to operating facilities will be examined. In addition, management principles and concepts as they affect program selection and scheduling of sport and fitness facilities will also be examined.

MSA 550 Strategic Sport Marketing 3 Credits

A study of marketing concepts with application to sport organizations. Topics include promotions and public relations, sport consumer behavior, strategic market planning, marketing information management, marketing communications, branding and sponsorship sales.

MSA 560 Moral and Ethics in Sport 3 Credits

This course helps students establish a fundamental philosophy for sport in their personal and professional life. The course addresses the decision to be involved in sports in a professional capacity, the decisions that drive actions and decision-making in professional life and the formulation of a personal ethical code.

MSA 565 Sport Communication 3 Credits

A study of basic knowledge and understanding of media relations in sport. Emphasis on building and managing an effective media relations program at the intercollegiate and professional levels. Examines news releases, home town features, contest management, press conferences, statistics and publications.

MSA 599 Independent Study 1-3 Credits

Independent studies require an application and approval by associate dean.

Prerequisite: permission of the instructor, department chair, & associate dean.

MSA 611 Risk Management and Contract Negotiation 3 Credits

This course is directed at understanding basic legal concepts in the sport setting. As a practical matter, the course will aid the student in recognizing how these legal concepts can be applied in the administration and management of sport programs, facilities and personnel.

MSA 613 Organizational Behaviors 3 Credits

Presents existing research, theories and models explaining how individual and group behavior and processes shape the internal dynamics of organizations. Provides the foundation to understand contemporary debates concerning alternative organizational designs and management practices.

Offered: occasionally.

MSA 621 Rule Compliance Intercollegiate Athletics 3 Credits

This course will provide an overview of the NCAA's governance structure and legislative process, as well as the role of on-campus athletics compliance officers. Using case studies from the NCAA's major and secondary infractions database, students will examine each of the NCAA's operating bylaws: amateurism, recruiting, eligibility, financial aid, awards and benefits and playing and practice seasons. Students will learn how rules violations are investigated, reported and processed (and maybe even avoided), and how the role of the NCAA's enforcement staff and infractions committee impacts rules compliance in intercollegiate athletics.

MSA 631 Intercollegiate Athletics 3 Credits

An introduction to the management of intercollegiate athletics and a review of the organizational structure of the intercollegiate athletic department, conferences and the NCAA. Analysis of prevailing issues in college athletics including financial trends, academic recruiting, legislation, conference realignment, reform and Title IX/gender equity.

MSA 641 Professional Sport 3 Credits

This course is aimed at providing an overview of professional sports and their leagues, including organizational structure and the associated job market. The emphasis will be placed on sports outside of the four major leagues, such as the PGA, WNBA, LPGA, and NASCAR.

MSA 650 Special Events 3 Credits

Overview of all elements involved in sport event management. Key components of the course include practical application at actual events and interaction with industry experts, as well as creation and implementation of a major class event to benefit a local charity. A strong emphasis is placed on coursework outside of the classroom environment.

MSA 660 Sport Finance and Business 3 Credits

An overview of general business economics and financial principles. Topics include private and public sector funding, economic impact analysis, sponsorship, partnerships and fundraising related to sport and sport organizations.

MSA 798 Internship in Sport Administration 3 Credits

Individually structured work-related independent research guided by a faculty/staff member. The goal is to integrate student's academic experience with that of the work place. Research report required.

MSA 799 Internship in Sport Administration 1-6 Credits

Individually structured work-related independent research guided by a faculty/staff member. The goal is to integrate student's academic experience with that of the work place. Research report required.

Prerequisites: completion of all other required courses and the signature and approval of program director.

MSA 899 Practica for International Students 0 Credits

Allows the international student to learn and gain experience in the workings of a sport and/or entertainment organization in the United States.