How Much Do Sports Agents Make?

Sports agents represent professional athletes, promoting them to teams and advertisers as well as working on their behalf during contract negotiations. Read on to find out more information on how much you can earn working as a sports agent. Schools offering Education - Sports Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Job Description

As a sports agent, your primary duties will usually focus on contract negotiations. In addition, you might also perform administrative duties, like making travel arrangements or scheduling promotional events. You may also advise your clients on their financial affairs or help them resolve issues with union officials, which will often earn you an increased salary.

Important Facts About Sports Agents

Required Education Typically a bachelor's degree
On-the-Job Training Industry-related work experience recommended
Similar Occupations Events Manager, Sports Psychologist, Athletic Trainer, School Sports Director
Key Skills Leadership, management, decision-making, organizational, and problem-solving skills

Salary Overview

As a sports agent, your income will depend on the athletes you represent and the services you provide for them. Additionally, the area of the country in which they play has an effect on their salaries, which in turn determines your commission and bonus opportunities. Most agents, however, usually represent multiple athletes in various parts of the country, which means your income can vary greatly.

As of September 2015, reported that most sports agents made salaries ranging from $38,530-$484,790, though that survey had only 31 respondents. The median salary at that time was $63,615. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that agents and business managers of artists, performers and athletes made median salaries of $64,200 a year in May 2014 (

Commission and Bonuses

Your income is usually made up of a base salary, commission and bonuses. Commission is usually determined by the salary earned by the athlete, or athletes, who you represent. You will usually earn 3%-5% on their team contracts and 10%-25% on advertising endorsements, public appearance events or other business opportunities, according to St. Petersburg College ( Bonuses are dependent upon the additional earning opportunities, like sponsorships or endorsements, which you obtain for your client.

Salary by Employer Type

According to May 2014 figures from the BLS, agents and business managers of artists, performers and athletes working in promotion made $66,620, on average. Performing arts companies paid an average wage of $62,900. Professionals working in advertising and public relations made the highest average salary of $112,160.

Salary by Location

The highest employment levels of these agents and businesses managers were found in California, New York, Florida, Tennessee and Illinois in May 2014, reported the BLS. Annual average wages in the states were $126,330, $105,450, $50,840, $69,680 and $71,870, respectively. In addition to New York and California, some states with high average wages at that time included Nevada ($113,260), Massachusetts ($106,060) and Connecticut ($92,480).

Representing athletes who play for teams in major metropolitan areas, such as New York City or Los Angeles, will often earn you more than those who work in smaller cities. For example, in May 2014 the BLS reported that the mean annual salary for agents and business managers in the Los Angeles metropolitan area was approximately $130,050, which was considerably higher than the $105,370 average wage for those working in the New York City metropolitan area. Working with athletes who play for teams that operate in smaller markets with lower budgets may result in lower salaries for your clients and reduced commissions for yourself.

Job Outlook

The BLS projected that growth for agents and business managers of artists, performers and athletes would be 10% from 2012 through 2022. This rate is about average, and the number of new jobs by 2022 is expected to be 1,800.

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