Sports Law Discussion Held at WMU-Cooley Tampa Bay Campus

Attorneys working in the sports industry came together during the panel presentation “A Day in the Life” at WMU-Cooley Law School’s Tampa Bay campus.

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The March 11 presentation, hosted by the law school’s Sports and Entertainment Law Society featured Samantha Bramberger, WMU-Cooley student  who completed an internship in the athletic compliance office at the University of South Florida; Jennifer Eden, NFL agent with Tier1 Sports Management; Dan Malasky, chief legal officer for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers; Jessica Merrick , associate counsel of Tampa Bay Sports and Entertainment, which includes the Tampa Bay Lightning; Ben Shotten, WMU-Cooley adjunct professor and influencer and production manager for The Identity Tampa Bay, a digital sports and lifestyle network; and William Winter, compliance coordinator at the University of South Florida.

 

Pictured, from left: Jennifer Eden, NFL agent with Tier1 Sports Management; Ben Shotten, WMU-Cooley adjunct professor and influencer and production manager for The Identity Tampa Bay, a digital sports and lifestyle network; Jessica Merrick , associate counsel of Tampa Bay Sports and Entertainment, which includes the Tampa Bay Lightning; Dan Malasky, chief legal officer for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers; Samantha Bramberger, WMU-Cooley student  who completed an internship in the athletic compliance office at the University of South Florida; and William Winter, compliance coordinator at the University of South Florida.

 

During the presentation panelists shared information about their paths into the sports and entertainment law industry, how they served the various industries in which they have practiced law, and shared tips on how to break into the sports law field.  

 

Sharing his path to working for the Buccaneers, Malasky, who previously worked with Dirt Motor Sports, and the U.S. Tennis Association, said that working hard, networking, timing and luck all are important for breaking into practicing law in the sports industry.

 

“There are only so many times that you have the opportunity to take a risk,” said Malasky.  “Do things outside your comfort zone.”

 

Winter told law students that while preparing for his legal career he wanted more than just a legal job — he wanted to find a job he was passionate about. He explained the importance of starting a career even if for a small organization.

 

“Beat people’s doors down, offer to work for free, get your foot in the door, being in the building will help a lot,” said Winter. “The first entry-level job, don’t do it for the money or the glory.” 

 

Beginning her career in commercial litigation, Eden also spoke about the importance of making contacts and selecting positions that are gratifying.

 

“It is important to network and create respectable relationships from day one,” said Eden.

During her remarks, Merrick encouraged students to work hard, have a good work ethic, get experience, do an externship, and internship.

 

Shotten began his legal career in criminal defense and bankruptcy law, and he obtained a master’s degree in sports management. With his law degree and master’s degree, Shotten was able to break into the sports law field and began working with the Tampa Bay Storm.

 

“I am all about the experience.  We have to work hard to get what we want,” said Shotten.

 

Sharing her experience as an intern at the University of South Florida’s athletics compliance office, Bramberger explained how she edited waivers, conducted spot checks and would make sure practices did not go over their allotted times.

 

Explaining that she wanted to intern at USF and that she is WMU-Cooley’s first intern at USF’s compliance office, Bramberger said, “Never be afraid to ask and don’t be afraid to hear the word no.  I wanted it, so I tried hard.”

 

 

 

Mar 15 2019

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