Sports and Entertainment Law Institute - Faculty
Michael McCann is a Professor of Law and the Founding Director of the UNH Law Sports and Entertainment Law Institute (SELI). SELI, which is part of the top-ranked Franklin Pierce Center for Intellectual Property, offers students hands-on training and experiential opportunities in this cutting-edge area of law.
McCann is one of the nation’s leading experts in sports law, a seasoned sports attorney, and an award-winning teacher, scholar and journalist. He is Sports Illustrated ’s Legal Analyst, an Investigative Writer for both Sports Illustrated and SI.com, and the on-air Legal Analyst for NBA TV. McCann has authored more than 400 legal columns and investigative articles for Sports Illustrated and SI.com and is a key member of Sports Illustrated’s investigative team. He has covered the Boston Marathon bombings, the trial of Aaron Hernandez for the murder of Odin Lloyd, sexual assault allegations against Jameis Winston, the Washington Redskins trademark dispute, Donald Sterling’s legal battles with both the NBA and his wife Shelly Sterling, NBA, NFL and NHL lockouts, the legality of the NFL’s tax exempt status, the Jerry Sandusky scandal, Ed O’Bannon v. NCAA, Lance Armstrong’s doping scandal and many other stories. McCann was the first member of the media to interview Lance Armstrong after Armstrong’s interview with Oprah Winfrey. He interviewed Armstrong at his home in Austin, TX and authored “My Dance With Lance” (Sports Illustrated, March 11, 2013 issue, pages 14-15).
During the summer of 2014, McCann wrote a record-breaking 50 legal columns for Sports Illustrated and SI.com. McCann has also broken several national news stories, including that University of Arkansas football coach Bobby Petrino hired his mistress over 150 more qualified candidates, that Donald Sterling informed the NBA of his refusal to comply with the NBA’s sanction and that Sterling hired a legal team with a threat to sue the NBA, and that the Los Angeles Angels were set to trade troubled outfielder Josh Hamilton.
McCann is also the Editor and an author of the forthcoming Oxford University Press Handbook of American Sports Law. The book is expected to be published in 2017 and will be intended for law students, graduate students, college students and attorneys interested in the study of American sports law. McCann has authored more than 20 law review articles, with placements in the Yale Law Journal, Wisconsin Law Review, and Boston College Law Review, among other prominent law reviews. One notable law review article is American Needle v. NFL: An Opportunity to Reshape Sports Law, 119 YALE L.J. 726 (2010).
In addition to his sports law expertise, Professor McCann is an established expert in the law of private associations, intellectual property law, media law, disability law, and law and analytics. Along with Jon Hanson, the Alfred Smart Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, Professor McCann is co-founder of The Project on Law and Mind Sciences at Harvard Law School. Hanson and McCann were recipients of the 2011 Media Prize awarded by the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, an international organization of scholars devoted to social and personality psychology.
McCann is also the Distinguished Visiting Hall of Fame Professor of Law at Mississippi College School of Law and teaches bar preparation courses for Themis Bar Review. Professor McCann has also taught a sports law and analytics reading group at Yale Law School – the first such course to be offered at any law school – and sports law and administrative law courses at Boston College Law School. He was chair of the Association of American Law School’s Section on Law and Sports in 2008.
McCann’s work as a sports attorney is extensive. In 2004, McCann served as counsel to college football star Maurice Clarett in his lawsuit against the National Football League and its age eligibility rule. McCann was retained by Clarett’s legal team after a paper he wrote in law school – “Illegal Defense: The Irrational Economics of Banning High School Players from the NBA” – was published in the Virginia Sports and Entertainment Law Journal and read by Clarett’s attorneys. Clarett v. NFL is considered one of the most important cases in U.S. sports law history. McCann has also represented sports technology companies in business development and intellectual property matters. In addition, he has served as a Visiting Researcher at Harvard Law School, Legal Counsel to U.S. Congressman Marty Meehan, an antitrust and intellectual property law litigator at two Boston firms and a communications aide to Massachusetts Attorney General Tom Reilly.
Professor McCann is a regular panelist at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conferences. He provides daily sports law commentary on Twitter @McCannSportsLaw. He has also received numerous honors for outstanding legal commentary. In 2014, Forbes Magazine named McCann on its list of “Top 100 Sports Business Commentators.” In 2013, Boston Magazine honored McCann as one of the “Best Boston Sports Personalities” on Twitter. In 2012, The Huffington Post ranked McCann #23 on “Top 40 Must-Follow Twitter Accounts for NBA Fanatics” and The Sporting Chart named him a “Top 50 NBA Mind on Twitter.”
While a student at the University of Virginia School of Law from 1999 to 2002, McCann was named a Hardy Cross Dillard Fellow, served as the Editor-in-Chief of the Virginia Sports and Entertainment Law Journal, and received the Best Oral Advocacy Award.
McCann holds an LLM degree from Harvard Law School, a JD from the University of Virginia School of Law and a BA from Georgetown University.
Michael Dube is an honors graduate of Rutgers College (1999) and an honors graduate of Rutgers School of Law-Camden (2002). From September 2002 through August 2003, Mr. Dube served as an appellate law clerk to the Honorable Naomi G. Eichen, J.A.D. Mr. Dube joined Sherman, Silverstein, Kohl, Rose & Podolsky, P.A. as an associate in September 2003, representing parties in diverse areas such as personal injury, products liability, medical malpractice, first-party insurance coverage, antitrust, employment, sports law (including the representation of top amateur and professional athletes with regard to litigation matters), complex commercial litigation, copyright and trademark, and criminal law.
In 2006 and 2007, after just a few years of practice, he was recognized as a New Jersey Rising Star. In 2008, Mr. Dube relocated with family to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and began working for a large law firm, where he represented plaintiffs in FINRA arbitrations, and defendants in sophisticated medical professional liability matters, insurance coverage matters, and high-exposure liquor liability litigation. Mr. Dube rejoined Sherman, Silverstein in 2010. Mr. Dube was selected for inclusion in the 2012 and 2015 New Jersey Rising Stars list. Mr. Dube has “second chaired” three arbitral awards of $7,300,000 or more in favor of his firms’ clients, has successfully represented clients in the New Jersey Superior Court-Appellate Division, the Pennsylvania Superior Court, and the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, and has substantial expertise and experience in brief writing, and appellate practice.
He has been quoted in The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Kentucky Herald-Leader, and The Thoroughbred Times, among other publications. Mr. Dube is admitted to practice in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts.
A songwriter in his spare time, Mr. Dube has written over 250 songs, and has been a songwriter member of the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) since 2000. He is presently completing the music and lyrics to “For A Song,” a full-length musical about the intersection of songwriting and the law.
Peter T. Foley brought Sports Law to UNH Law in 1992, making what was then Franklin Pierce Law Center one of the few leading IP law schools to also offer students a sports law option. He has regularly taught both professional and amateur related sports law courses at UNH Law over the past 20 years and will be teaching Intellectual Property Issues in Sports & Entertainment Law in the Spring of 2015.
He has commented on sports law and business issues for a number of publications including The New York Times, The Boston Globe and Baseball America and has written and recorded numerous radio commentary pieces for Public Radio International’s Marketplace as well as for Christian Science Monitor Radio. In years past, he has also written and produced sports humor pieces for New Hampshire Public Radio as well as hosted, along with two of his brothers, The Sports Buzz, a sports radio talk show that brought a not-so-serious perspective to the Boston sports scene.
Peter is an honors graduate of the Georgetown University Law Center and has practiced law in New Hampshire, first as a Senior Assistant Attorney General and now as a solo practitioner, since relocating here from Massachusetts in 1981.
UNH Law Professor Matthew E. Lane teaches international and comparative sports law: examining law and sports from a global perspective. He practices as an associate with Preti Flaherty in its Concord, New Hampshire office. Lane joined Preti Flaherty in 2009 and practices with both the firm's Business Law and Sports & Entertainment Groups. His sports law practice focuses on the representation of athletes in a variety of areas, including contract negotiations and commercial rights. Lane is a certified IAAF Athlete Representative and serves as an agent for several athletes in the sport of track and field.
Prior to pursuing law, Lane was a professional runner, sponsored by Nike, and was a member of two U.S. national teams. As a collegiate athlete at William and Mary, he was an 11-time NCAA Division I All-American and the 2001 U.S. Track Coaches Association Athlete of the Year (the track & field “Heisman”).
In 2002, he became the 251st American to run the mile in under four minutes (his official time was 3:57.57). In 2010, he was honored as one of 25 "Silver Stars" of the Colonial Athletic Association conference— the 25 best athletes in the 25-year history of the conference. He was inducted into the William and Mary Athletic Hall of Fame in 2011. He also served as the Head Indoor Track & Field coach at Yarmouth High School, and currently serves as Assistant Coach to the school's cross-country team.
During law school, Lane served as the Executive Editor of the Maine Law Review. He is a native of Yarmouth, Maine.
UNH Law Professor Valerie Lovely teaches music law. She is the founder of Music Law Firm, a transactional music law practice that caters to the legal and business needs of musicians and music business owners. Lovely’s diverse clientele includes those at the start of their careers to recognized and award winning professionals.
In addition to working with her Music Law Firm clients, Lovely accepts a few invitations each year to speak about the legal aspects of the music industry. Audiences have included: The American Bar Association, Belly DanceGeek Clubhouse, Berklee College of Music, the Blacksun Festival, the Massachusetts Bar Association, Suffolk Law School, University of New Hampshire School of Law, the Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts in Massachusetts, and the Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts in Maine.
Lovely is an Assistant Professor at Berklee College of Music and teaches through BerkleeOnline. She has provided annual training workshops in music law for The Recording Artist Project (RAP) at Harvard Law School and the Arts & Business Counsel’s Musician’s Professional Toolbox for several years. She also created and taught courses in transactional music law at The Intellectual Property Summer Institute (IPSI) at University of New Hampshire School of Law in 2010, 2011, and 2012.
Lovely earned her Bachelor of Music degree in Film Scoring from Berklee College of Music in Boston and has worked in the music industry for many years. As a multi-instrumentalist, she has performed in rock bands, chamber groups, wind ensembles, on studio projects, and has composed music in various styles and for use in a variety of media.
Lovely attended University of Maine School of Law where she participated on the Law Review, Moot Court, the Edward Thaxter Gignoux Inn of Courts, and she was a Legal Writing instructor. Upon graduation she was awarded the Gignoux Award for Appellate Advocacy.
UNH Law professor Jason M. Okai, JD/MIP '00 teaches copyright law and intellectual property issues in sports and entertainment law. He joined UNH Law in 2013 as an adjunct professor. He began teaching copyright law and intellectual property courses in 2007 at Vermont Law School, where he was also a faculty member of Vermont Law’s Sports Law Institute.
After graduating from UNH Law (previously Franklin Pierce Law Center) in 2000, Okai worked as Copyright Counsel in Los Angeles for the Motion Picture Association of America, a trade association whose members are six of the largest motion picture studios in the United States. There he focused on intellectual property legislation and policy development, appellate advocacy and litigation in the United States and abroad.
In addition, Oai worked closely with several professional sports leagues and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers on diverse legal issues related to the business of sports and entertainment.
He returned to New England in 2007 to teach at Vermont Law School and practice privately. Recently, he served with the United States Copyright Office in Washington, D.C. as Counsel for Policy and International Affairs where he worked on copyright legislation and policy development and managed a portfolio of over thirty Asian and Pacific territories.
Okai holds a BA from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and a JD and Masters of Intellectual Property (MIP) from the University of New Hampshire School of Law.
UNH Law Professor Alexandra J. Roberts teaches entertainment law and trademark law. As director of the Franklin Pierce Center for Intellectual Property, Roberts is responsible for coordinating the IP Center’s internal and external operations, including conferences, events, and the IP Center’s major programs, which include the Sports and Entertainment Law Institute. She works closely with the dean and faculty on the development and execution of new strategic initiatives, including collaborative partnerships with national intellectual property offices, major educational institutions, and international organizations.
Prior to joining the UNH Law faculty, Roberts taught Trademarks & Unfair Competition as a Visiting Assistant Professor at Boston University School of Law. Before that, she worked as an IP litigation associate at Ropes & Gray LLP in New York and Boston. While at Ropes, she represented several high-profile clients in connection with film, television, infomercial, social media, life story rights, book publishing, product endorsement, contract, and right of publicity issues. She also assisted transgender individuals with legal name changes by volunteering as part of the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund’s Name Change Project.
Roberts holds an AB from Dartmouth College, an AM from Stanford University, and a JD from the Yale Law School. She is the author of a number of law review articles, including publications in Texas Law Review, Alabama Law Review (forthcoming), and the Yale Journal of Law & Technology. She is an affiliated fellow of the Yale Information Society Project. Roberts is also a published poet. She tweets regularly on trademark and entertainment law news @lexlanham.
UNH Law Professor B.J. Schecter teaches sports law and investigative reporting. He is an executive editor for Sports Illustrated and SI.com. Schechter’s responsibilities include running the magazine’s investigative team, overseeing college sports, managing content and columnists for the website, working closely with editors and writers to integrate SI and SI.com, initiating cross-platform projects, and managing SI.com’s internship program.
Schecter has served a variety of roles at Sports Illustrated since coming to the magazine in September 1996. He started as a reporter and rose to writer-reporter, associate editor, senior editor, and assistant managing editor before being promoted to his current position. As a writer, he covered college football and college basketball. As an editor, he edited college football, college basketball, baseball, and several special projects, including Crime in College Football, the 50 Most Influential Minorities in Sports, the Great American Sports Atlas, the nation’s top high school programs, and more.
Prior to Sports Illustrated, Schecter spent five years at The Boston Globe, where he was the lead high school writer and also covered colleges. Before that he spent three years at the Middlesex News (now the MetroWest Daily News).
Schecter graduated with honors from Northeastern University, where he served as manager for the men’s basketball team for three years.