by Howard Shatsky 08-19-2008 02:00 AM
I have been representing NFL players since 1989, following my graduation from American University's Washington College of Law. Over the last 19 years, I have worked with Pro Bowlers, first round draft choices, and undrafted rookie free agents. I have negotiated contracts with every team in the National Football League and I am currently a Sr. VP with ProStar Sports Agency, and much to the surprise of my former classmates, I also serve as an Adjunct Professor of Sports Law at American University Washington College of Law.
Over the course of my career, I have been fortunate enough to have had some great experiences and worked with some great people. One day after inebriating me with Diet Coke, Matt asked if I would be interested in giving his readers the benefit of my twenty years in the trenches. Over the next several months you will see the fruits of that lunch meeting that Matt and I had. You will have unprecedented access to my expertise and the chance to speak with me personally about how to successfully enter the agent business. Keep watching here at AccessAthletes for more details in the near future. I will also be contributing written articles about the business of sports and sports representation.
The one thing I often hear in my travels is, "I have a (insert relative or close friend's title here- son, daughter, nephew, neighbor's kid) who would love to have your job. The first thing I always think to myself is, I wonder if they really know what my job entails. The fact is most people have a misconception about what an agent does and about what an agent's life is like. I rue the day Jerry Maguire was made! Most people envision a life of partying with celebrity clients and earning lucrative commissions on multi-million dollar contract negotiations.
OK, a few cold hard facts about the agent business. It is a brutal, ruthless business. Over the last two decades, I have seen many more prospective agents fail than succeed. The barriers to entry are higher than ever. To become a certified NFLPA contract advisor you now must possess a graduate degree, pass an exam, obtain liability insurance and pay an annual fee to the NFLPA. If you are fortunate enough to sign a player who is selected in the NFL draft, you will have the privilege of incurring approximately $15,000 in expenses. Before you earn that big commission, chances are most of your checks will be for about $6,000 which will not even cover the expenses incurred in representing that player. If you still want to be a sports agent, than you are in the right place and will learn from a professional here at AccessAthletes.
Published 08-19-2008 © 2020 Access Athletes, LLC
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