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Posted September 13, 2016 by

Sport analytics careers: 5 skills college grads should master for career success

Young businesswoman explaining graph to business team

Young businesswoman explaining graph to business team. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

The field of sport analytics is growing, fast, and colleges, universities – and employers, are taking note. In fact, Syracuse University’s Falk College recently announced the development and 2017 launch of a new Bachelor of Science in Sport Analytics – the first undergraduate program of its kind in the country. The goal of the Syracuse University Sport Analytics program is to provide students with “a deep understandig of math, statistics, research methodology, sport economics, database management, finance, and computer programming integral to sport analytics. The degree also includes a mandatory foreign language requirement to prepare students for the global sport industry.”

The use of analytics in sport became popular with the release of the 2003 book Moneyball by Michael Lewis, which showed how Oakland Athletics General Manager Billy Beane used analytics, statistics, and data to assemble and develop a cash-strapped baseball team. In 2011, a movie by the same name was released, bringing the use of sport analytics to the big screen and to the attention of sports fans everywhere. Today, sports enthusiasts are focusing on sport analytica careers as a way to gain employment with the NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, WNBA, MLS, and other professional or minor league sports franchises, or businesses within the sports industry. The College Recruiter profile titled Sports analytics careers: Recent college grad discusses keys to success, provided an insight into what it takes to succeed in sport analytics careers. In addition, it’s no secret employers in all industries, in and outside the world of sports, are using analytics to recruit and hire college students and recent college grads. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the sport industry generated just under $500 billion in 2014-15 – making it the fifth largest economic sector in the U.S. economy. BLS data also revealed that jobs within the field of “data analyst” are growing at a rate of 27 percent per year – which is more than double the 11 percent national job growth average.

But when talking to Rodney Paul, a Syracuse University Sports Economics Professor and Sports Analytics Program Director who, along with Syracuse University Professor Michael Veley, researched and designed the curriculum for the Syracuse University Sport Analytics bachelor’s degree program, one thing stands out:

The focus of the program isn’t all about sports.

“To use a sports analogy, we want to develop a true 5-tool player,” says Paul. “We want graduates of our sport analytics program to be well-versed in a wide variety of core competencies relative to what is needed to succeed in a career in sport analytics.”

Those five key skills that the Syracuse University Sport analytics program will focus on include:

Mathematics: At some point, it became acceptable for high school and college students to stop challenging themselves with math, says Paul. That’s because math is hard, and requires strong analytical skills. But those who relish the challenges of math, and the analytical and critical thinking skills required to succeed in math, are on the right path to a successful career in sport analytics. “Math is difficult,” says Paul. “But the more you understand math, the more you can learn, and challenge yourself, the deeper one can dive into sport analytics.”

Computer/Information Technology Systems: Programming skills, knowing how to code, database management – proficiency in these areas and other industry technology/software programs is crucial. This is always evolving and will continue to change, but knowing the basics of key industry programs is a must. Showing one can apply these technical skills, and learn new skills/programs on an ongoing basis is going to be important for ongoing career growth.

Business Economics: A strong business acumen, and understanding of economics, and how it applies to sports is important.

Communication: Soft skills are important in the field of sport analytics. Professionals must have strong interpersonal, and communication skills to work within a team, with a diverse group of co-workers, clients, vendors, or colleagues. Being able to communicate data, analytics, and the theories behind sport analytics to co-workers, clients, prospects, senior management, and members of your team are integral to career success. This is true in any industry, sport analytics included.

Foreign Language: Sport analytics careers are available worldwide. Think about this, Paul says: The KHL (Kontinental Hockey League) is widely known as “the Russian professional hockey league.” But, in reality, the 29 teams are based in Belarus, China, Croatia, Finland, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Russia, and Slovakia, and expansion to other countries is likely. Major League Baseball has a large presence in Latin America. The NBA brand is exploding in China. The NFL is playing games in Europe. The NHL has a worldwide presence. Soccer? It always has been an international game.

“Sport industry executives repeatedly tell us that students who are bilingual are highly sought after, especially in growth areas including South America, China and India,” said Falk College Dean Diane Lyden Murphy.

The core curriculum of the Syracuse Sport Analytics program includes a focus on principles of research methodology, sport economics, database management, finance, computer mathematics, statistics and economics. Upon graduation, students will be prepared to think conceptually and analytically while applying these principles to real issues in sport organizations. The Syracuse Sport Analytics program prepares students for a variety of different possible analytics career paths on the player evaluation side, business side, or both, says Paul.

“Sports is the central part of all this and what ties students together,” says Paul, “but developing these skill sets is what is needed to launch a successful career in sport analytics.”

Sport analytics careers are growing at a rapid rate. Master these five key skills to get ahead in the fast-growing field of sport analytics. Want to learn more about trends in sport analytics careers? Stay connected to College Recruiter by visiting our blog, and connect with us on LinkedInTwitterFacebook, and YouTube.

Rodney Paul, Sports economist and program director for the Syracuse University Sport Analytics bachelors degree program.

Rodney Paul, Syracuse University

Rodney Paul, is a Syracuse University Sports Economics Professor and Sports Analytics Program Director who, along with Syracuse University Professor Michael Veley, researched and designed the curriculum for the Syracuse University Sport Analytics bachelor’s degree program.

Posted February 02, 2015 by

Interested in a Fast Growing Career? Try Your Hand in the Affordable Web Hosting Industry

Web design concept: computer keyboard with word Web Hosting on enter button, 3d render

Web design concept: computer keyboard with word Web Hosting on enter button, 3d render. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

If numbers do not lie as sages of yore proclaimed then the future of society is in computing technology. A Forrester Research report says there are 2.92 billion internet users while another by 2015 International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) reckons there is creation of 571 websites every minute of each day.

Best Career Choice

Whether you are in business or you want to interact socially, information technology has revolutionized the way you do it. This is where websites and blogs have come in so handy. If you are looking for the ideal career choice, this should be your first stop. The computing world provides a very broad area with multiple fields of specialization. (more…)

Posted September 11, 2014 by

How to Start Your Career as a Veterinarian

Doctor examining a dog at the vet

Doctor examining a dog at the vet. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

If you love animals and like to take care of them as a professional, then you have a bright future as a veterinary doctor.  Becoming a vet doctor is not very easy though. This challenging career requires several years of schooling and experience to earn success. If you are studying in a high school and dream to be a vet doctor in future, then read on to know what you need to do to be an expert veterinarian. (more…)

Posted August 18, 2014 by

Are You a Recent High School Graduate Searching for Jobs? 20 Well Paid Positions for those without a College Degree

While getting a college degree can help boost your career, if you’re a recent graduate of high school there are jobs you might be interested in.  Learn 20 positions that pay well without a degree in the following post.

In several of these jobs, workers may need to attend vocational school or other non-college-level training programs to achieve licensure or certification. Additionally, entry-level requirements will vary by state, locality, and…

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Posted November 11, 2013 by

CIA agent salary comparison with FBI, SWAT & DEA agents – benefits and career path

 

We are going to compare the US top intelligence agencies that have a utmost career path, including CIA agent salary and FBI agent salary. We also look at how each is inferior to others. The earnings for FBI agents stack up positively with the whole private-eyes and legal detective industry. Based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average yearly salary for investigators and legal detectives, including FBI associates, was $60,910 at the time on June 2013.  (more…)

Posted June 24, 2013 by

Three ways to take career-relevant courses without pursuing a degree

Computer mouse on a diploma in a blue background

Computer mouse on a diploma in a blue background. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Maybe you’re at the point in your career where you don’t need another degree but you need more education. These days, with the Internet more prevalent than ever, there are plenty of ways to pursue knowledge and acquire skills formally without having to earn a college degree.

Here are three ways to take career-relevant courses as a non-degree seeking student. (more…)

Posted June 07, 2013 by

Are Any of These Career Options for You?

Rasmussen College logoDo you have a degree but aren’t sure what career options to pursue? Or, are you just starting college and are looking for an advantageous degree that will provide job stability and long-term growth? Here’s an interactive chart that was created by Rasmussen College that you might find really helpful. (more…)

Posted May 29, 2013 by

5 Jobs if You Can’t Sit Still

Woman doing multiple tasks

Woman doing multiple tasks. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Some people just aren’t meant for the 9-to-5 cubicle lifestyle. If the thought of an office job makes you break out in hives and run for the door, consider these five jobs that will get you going and keep you moving.

Get on your feet with 5 active jobs

The jobs below aren’t your standard retail drudgery, and they aren’t for office drones. These careers typically require training and require a lot of energy and commitment every day. If you’re ready to get away from the office for good, take a look at the full-time jobs that get you out of your chair and into the world. (more…)

Posted April 25, 2013 by

Five career transition tips for Jay-Z, Jimmy Fallon and you

Pointed arrow with New Career Ahead on road surface

Pointed arrow with New Career Ahead on road surface. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

Sending shockwaves across the nation, news of career transitions by two of New York City’s most prominent entertainers recently made headlines. First came news that rapper and entrepreneur Jay-Z was adding sports agent to his long list of job titles, representing New York Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano. The move coincided with the introduction of Roc Nation Sports, the newest arm of Jay-Z’s management company, Roc Nation. Next, NBC confirmed that Jimmy Fallon will be taking over the hosting duties of “The Tonight Show” in spring 2014. The news had been widely rumored and included an announcement that the show – which is currently shot in Los Angeles – would be moving to The Big Apple. (more…)

Posted April 12, 2013 by

What Exactly Does New Fed Data Show About Pay for Low-Skill …

The following post lists 10 of the most common entry level jobs in the United States and what they say about employment.

Seven of the 10 largest occupations in the U.S. pay well below the national average annual pay of $45000, according to new data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Of course, once you find out which jobs we’re …

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What Exactly Does New Fed Data Show About Pay for Low-Skill …