Sports and Entertainment Law Institute
UNH Law's new Sports and Entertainment Law Institute
Noted sports law expert Michael McCann has joined the University of New Hampshire School of Law and launched a new Sports and Entertainment Law Institute. McCann, who was a visiting professor at UNH Law during the 2012-13 academic year, is now professor of law and director of the Sports and Entertainment Law Institute.
The Sports and Entertainment Law Institute provides opportunities for students who demonstrate a talent and passion for sports and entertainment law with core skills in these practice areas and opportunities for thoughtful discussion of contemporary legal issues in the field.
The Institute helps students gain real-world skills to obtain, and succeed in, careers in sports and entertainment law. Students will have the opportunity to enroll in a wide-range of core and supporting courses.
The Sports and Entertainment Law Institute is a great pairing with our historic strengths in trademark and copyright law. And we are very fortunate to have Michael McCann, one of the most exciting legal scholars in the country, leading the way.
I'm thrilled to join a school which is deservedly renowned for its intellectual property law program. To launch a sports and entertainment law institute as part of this program is a fantastic opportunity. I can't wait to work with students in developing hands-on skills in sports and entertainment law, and helping them enter those fields.
The Sports & Entertainment Law Institute will be part of UNH Law's Franklin Pierce Center for Intellectual Property, which is consistently ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the nation's best intellectual property law programs.
About the Sports & Entertainment Law Institute
The Sports and Entertainment Law Institute will help students gain real-world skills to obtain, and succeed in, jobs in sports and entertainment law. Part of this process will entail advising students on course selection, with particular attention paid to matching a student’s career interests with relevant courses.
Students will have opportunities to enroll in a wide-range of core and supporting courses, including:
- Sports Law I: Dispute Resolution in Professional Sports
- Sports Law II: Individual Rights in Collegiate & Olympic Sports
- Sports and Intellectual Property Law
- Entertainment Law
- Music Law
- Theater Law
- Publishing Law
- Defamation Law & Litigation
- Video Game Law
- Media Law
NOTE: Some of these are proposed courses. Titles and offerings may change once the Sports & Entertainment Law Institute opens during the summer of 2013.
Students will also benefit from the wide range of IP courses offered through UNH Law's Franklin Pierce Center for Intellectual Property, including: Fundamentals of Intellectual Property Law, Advertising Law, Social Media and the Law, and Copyright Licensing.
Workshops and Training
The Sports and Entertainment Law Institute will provide opportunities for students who demonstrate a talent and passion for sports law with core skills in the practice of sports law and opportunities for thoughtful discussion of contemporary sports law issues.
To advance those goals, there will be workshops on:
Contract drafting, including drafting of employment contracts, endorsement contracts, licensing contracts and stadium/concession contracts. These workshops will particularly benefit students who are interested in becoming sports agents, attorneys for teams, or attorneys for companies which negotiate contracts with leagues, teams or players.
NCAA regulations and application of regulations to real-world situations. These workshops will particularly benefit students who are interested in becoming NCAA compliance officers at colleges and universities, and those who would like to get on the track to becoming an athletic director.
Sports litigation, arbitration and mediation. These workshops will particularly benefit students who are interested in becoming litigators, arbitrators or mediators and whose practice involves sports.
- Obtaining a job or experiential learning opportunity in sports law. These workshops will center on strategies for applying for a position as an agent, team or league attorney, private practice attorney, NCAA compliance officer and many other entry-level positions in the industry.
As I know from teaching at UNH Law this year, its students are bright and intellectually curious, and many have impressive backgrounds in engineering and science. I’m not surprised that UNH Law is on the ‘up and up’. And the UNH Law alumni network, with many graduates in sports and entertainment law professions, will strengthen the Institute. The school also has deep professional and alumni contacts abroad, especially in Asia, where professional sports are growing rapidly.
Legal Residency Placements
The Sports and Entertainment Law Institute recognizes that students have a broad range of career interests. They include ambitions to enter specific professions in sports and entertainment law, such as an agent to athletes and entertainers; in-house counsel to a team, league, network or studio; a compliance officer for a university athletic program; or a mediator to employment disputes among athletes and teams or performers and studios, among many other legal careers in the sports and entertainment fields. Other students may want to incorporate sports and entertainment law into a broader practice of law, such as a civil litigator who handles sports and entertainment disputes, along with other types of disputes, or an immigration attorney who helps teams sign players from other countries. The career possibilities in sports and entertainment law are endless and the Institute will help students navigate through potential opportunities.
To facilitate these career paths, the Sports and Entertainment Law Institute will assist students in obtaining legal residencies. These experiential opportunities will provide students with opportunities to earn academic credit while developing legal and professional skills under the close supervision of experienced sports and entertainment law attorneys. Placements will include those with professional teams, sports apparel, sports equipment, agencies, collegiate athletic offices and law firms with sports law practices. The school’s location in Concord and close proximity to Boston is an asset, as many sports and entertainment law opportunities are nearby.
About Michael McCann
UNH Law Professor Michael McCann is a leading expert in sports law, a seasoned sports attorney, and an award-winning teacher, scholar and journalist. Prior to coming to UNH Law, he founded and directed the sports law institute at Vermont Law School, where he created the groundbreaking Blue Chips Program, which provides students with the core skills and hands-on experience needed to succeed in the sports world.
McCann is also an accomplished journalist and legal commentator. He is a legal analyst and writer for Sports Illustrated and SI.com and the on-air legal analyst for NBA TV. He also appears regularly on CNN and The Dan Patrick Show to provide sports law commentary. In the past year alone, McCann has covered such issues as: the NFL, NBA and NHL lockouts; the Jerry Sandusky scandal at Penn State and the resulting NCAA penalties and litigation; Ed O'Bannon's antitrust and intellectual property class action lawsuit against the NCAA; NFL concussion litigation; and Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds' perjury trials, among many other topics.
McCann has authored 18 law review articles, including articles in the Yale Law Journal and Boston College Law Review, and more than 180 articles for Sports Illustrated and SI.com. McCann is also the editor-in-chief and publisher of Sports Law Blog, which has been honored by Fast Company as one of Three Best Sports Business Blogs and by the American Bar Association Journal as a Top 100 Law Blog. He also provides timely sports law commentary on Twitter @McCannSportsLaw, which has attracted more than 7,200 followers.
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 taught at Mississippi College School of Law, where he received the Professor of the Year Award in 2007 and 2008 and where he now teaches an intensive sports law course as the Distinguished Visiting Hall of Fame Professor of Law. In 2010, McCann also taught a sports law and analytics reading group at Yale Law School -- the first such course to be offered at any law school. Along with Jon Hanson, the Alfred Smart Professor of Law at Harvard Law School, McCann is co-founder of the Project on Law and Mind Sciences at Harvard Law School.
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.
UNH Law’s IP Mall Hosted Resource
The UNH Law Sports and Entertainment Law Institute is developing an educational repository for major sports and entertainment law documents. Our opening collection is collective bargaining agreements. (PDFs)
Current Collective Bargaining Agreements in the Major Pro Sports Leagues
Historical Collective Bargaining Agreements in the Major Pro Sports Leagues