MBA Sport Industry Talks
Being an MBA in Sport Management student and alum gives you access to experts in the classroom. Throughout the program, students are immersed in industry talks where professionals share invaluable information, dynamic commentary, and feedback about the Sports industry. Speakers range from Sport-related industries and disciplines.
Below is a highlight of select speakers from previous semesters who presented to students, and the topics they covered in class.
Senior Associate AD for Development, Florida Atlantic University
- Develop the Foundation for Your Career: Focus On Your Passion
- Discussion of your dream job
- Importance of revenue generation in athletics
Chief Marketing Officer, The Florida Panthers
- Oversees digital marketing and strategy for the Miami HEAT by leading a talented team that turns data into dollars
- Discussion on the HEAT's digital properties including social media, paid media, email marketing, web, mobile app, e-commerce, and eSports
- Importance of social media engagement and growth, such as HEAT online retail store and paid media strategies that reap big returns on retail, branded content, and ticket sales
Senior Associate AD, Administration and Chief of Staff, SWA, Florida Atlantic University
- Impact of COVID-19 on FAU Athletics’ budget, the coaches, practices and the players
- NCAA’s hottest topic, NIL (Name, Image, or Likeness) and the rule changes and bylaws
- Permissible activities for student athletes with new NIL
Chief Executive Officer, The Sterling Group, Inc.
- Stories from over 30 years of experience in the sport industry, as an agent, sports executive and a consultant
- Globalization of sports, the international sports business, and 2020-2021 milestones
- Rapid rise of global professional basketball and the power of sports
- Experiences as a sports lawyer (representing athletes in leagues in over five continents worldwide)
Vice President of Corporate Partnerships, Florida Panthers
- Shared career path roles as a member of the LSU Athletic Marketing Department, for women’s basketball, the Houston Astros in Community Affairs, and experiences in Corporate Partnerships with both the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Miami Dolphins
- The logistics of corporate partnerships and the day-to-day duties
- The importance of gaining experience and working in different roles
George Linley, '03 Alum
Executive Director, Palm Beach Sports Commission
- Shared his journey into the sport industry and how his career successes were propelled by the MBA in Sport Management program
- Explored information about The Palm Beach Sports Commission which is recognized as one of strongest sports commissions in the United States and how he developed recovery stages for sports events and tourism to recover from pandemic impact
- Discussed the role of the sports commission in Palm Beach and the revival initiatives of sports from the sport tourism perspective
- Spoke about the Palm Beach Sports Commission partnership with FAU MBA Sport and the internship and employment opportunities
Broadcaster, ESPN and Fox Sports
- Career path: started in sport media with College and Pro Football News Weekly and eventually became the editor
- Highlights of his career at ESPN for 26 years: started as a researcher and involvement with ESPN.com to eventually his own show on ESPN: Stump the Schwab
- Experiences such as doing Sports Jeopardy with Dan Patrick and being the College Basketball Guru at FOX, predicting matchups during the College Basketball tournament
- The changes in sport media from the past to now and employment opportunities in sport media
Director of Football Personnel Analytics, Miami Dolphins
- Experiences of working in Finance for 20 years before working in the sport industry
- His experiences as a consultant with the Jacksonville Jaguars, Baltimore Ravens, and Miami Dolphins in Football Analytics
- The goal of analytics teams: providing decision-makers with meaningful data and insights and encouraging organizations to utilize data to augment traditional decision-making
- The role of analytics in coaching (game management and opponent scouting) versus the role in personnel (drafting, trades, free agency, and player contract structure)
Sports Journalist, Fox Sports
- Experience working as a moderator on Fox Sports Undisputed
- Her journey through different roles in the sport industry
- Shared the challenges as a sideline reporter during the pandemic in regards to interviewing college athletes and coaches
- Advice and best practices on a career as a sports journalist or broadcaster
Industry Talk 1: Anthony Hilliard, Chief Executive Officer, The Sterling Group, Inc.
On the first episode of MBA in Sport Management: Industry Talks, our very own MBA Sport Director Dr. James Riordan welcomes to the classroom Chief Executive Officer of the The Sterling Group, Inc., Anthony Hilliard.
Find out how Anthony sticks to his integrity and honor to succeed in the Sports business.
Industry Talk 2: Anthony Bonavita, Executive Vice President, Cavaliers Operation Company
On this episode, listen to Anthony Bonavita's successful journey of how he rose in the Sports industry and how aspiring leaders can apply this knowledge to their own journey.
Industry Talk 3: Eugene Liu Shen, Director of Football Personnel Analytics, Miami Dolphins
Want to know how decisions are made using analytics? Listen in to this conversation with Eugene Liu Shen to see the science behind tactics and strategy at the Miami Dolphins. Learn about game management, personnel structure, talent identification, trades recommendation, and contract structures.
Industry Talk 4: Jenny Taft, Sports Journalist, Fox Sports
Jenny Taft started as a news desk reporter, evolved to college football correspondent, and then reported the Westminster Dog show, racing, and world cups. Now, she is an American sports television personality, serving as the moderator on Fox Sports 1's Skip and Shannon: Undisputed. Listen to more of her career adventures in the video below.
Industry Talk 5: Jonathan D. Mariner, Consultant, Fox Sports
Want to gain insight into baseball and other sports business models? Watch Johnathan Mariner's class. Formerly, he served as an Executive of the Miami Marlins and Florida Panthers, was former CFO of Major League Baseball, and is currently a Consultant at Fox Sports.
Industry Talk 6: Katerina Perez, Vice President of Corporate Partnerships, Florida Panthers
Listen in to Katerina Perez's successful journey starting from FAU to where she is now, as VP of Corporate Partnerships for the Florida Panthers. Learn the art behind corporate partnerships, such as the one she leads with Lexus, and the adventures in her career development from the beginning to her current role.
Industry Talk 7: Michael Graffin, Senior Associate Athletic Director for Advancement and External Relations, Florida Atlantic University
Curious about how FAU's Athletics team pivoted and adjusted from the COVID-19 pandemic? In this episode, Michael Graffin shares his experience and insights on how his team managed challenges that arose from last year to date. Discover how he overcame learning curves and how he built his career in Sports.