Students interested in working with sports teams, within sports retail, or for sports organizations gain essential business training and sports knowledge. By studying organizational behavior, accounting, and economics, learners develop critical-thinking and analytical tools needed to address financial and managerial aspects of the sports industry. Online sports management degree coursework on theories and practices in sport prepare students to solve problems and make decisions related to athletes, athletic departments, and sporting organizations. Additional content on fitness, wellness, recreation, media, and human performance deepen understanding of how sports and society relate to one another and the role business plays in that context.
In a sports management degree online, students not only learn skills to advance their careers, they also develop quantitative and qualitative research skills, writing and communication proficiencies, and hands-on experiences applicable to graduate study.
What are the Best Online Bachelor Degrees in Sports Management?
While some of the online sports management degrees on our list come from elite, research universities and others from smaller, liberal arts schools, they all share similar ground in providing excellent education in sports management. These schools will prepare you for a successful career in business, administration, marketing, management, and more.
To collate such an exhaustive and definitive list, we first researched the academic reputation of each program in the nation. And from there we examined student retention (a reflection of student satisfaction), the early salaries of graduates, and the affordability of each program. What we concluded with is a list of those programs that are the absolute best in the nation at providing a foundational education in sports management. Our figures and information come from the university and colleges’ websites, PayScale, and nationally recognized U.S. News & World Report and The National Center for Education Statistics.
University of Florida
College Choice Score: 100
Credit Hour Cost: $552
The University of Florida offers undergraduate and graduate sports management degrees online. The online bachelor of science in sports management provides students with foundational knowledge about sports organizations, laws and regulations related to sport, and facility management. Learners develop skills to work within sports across the spectrum of the industry at the amateur, collegiate, and professional levels. By studying comprehensive topics related to various subsets of the sports industry, including event planning, athlete representation, and sports administration. In addition to coursework, students complete full-time internship for 12 credit hours of academic credit during their final semester. The University of Florida also offers an online master’s degree in sports management.
College Choice Score: 99.25
Credit Hour Cost: $420
Concordia University in St. Paul, MN offers both bachelor’s and master’s of arts degrees in sports management. Within the 120-credit hour degree, undergraduate students that major in sports management complete 45 credit hours of field-specific coursework, including sports management, law and sport, and biomechanics. Asynchronous classes allow flexibility and convenience while giving learners the theoretical and practical content needed to apply to a variety of sports settings. The comprehensive curriculum prepares learners to pursue careers in the health and fitness industry, with sports organizations, and to run athletic programs. Learners also complete an eight-credit hour internship at the end of the program. Students and their advisors choose an internship site that best meets the learner’s interests and future goals.
College Choice Score: 97.75
Credit Hour Cost: $338
Troy University, located in Troy, AL, provides a sports management concentration within its online bachelor of science in hospitality, sport and tourism degree. Ideal for students that want to pursue careers in sport facility management, athletic compliance administration, and retail sport marketing, the program includes 123 credit hours of coursework with 21 reserved for field-specific credit hour classes. Students study communication, leadership, and problem-solving in sports settings through theoretical and practical coursework that emphasizes research and knowledge-based expertise. The sports management program at Troy University is nationally accredited by the Commission on Sport Management Accreditation (COSMA).
American Public University
College Choice Score: 97
Credit Hour Cost: $270
An online sports management bachelor of science degree from American Public University prepares students for careers in sports administration, coaching, and athletic promotion. Learners develop understanding of sports organizations, issues related to sport, theories and strategies of sport, and sports business practices through 36 major-specific credit hours within the 120-credit hour degree. Students also study ethical considerations and legal principles that apply to the modern sport industry at the high school, collegiate, and professional levels. During their final semester, students complete a senior sports seminar to create a portfolio of degree competencies and study case studies for career-focused information.
Southern New Hampshire University
College Choice Score: 96.25
Credit Hour Cost: $320
Southern New Hampshire University’s online sports management degree includes eight core classes with additional coursework in business and liberal arts to prepare future sports professionals. Students complete 120-credit hour degrees with major-specific classes in sports management, sports marketing, global sport, and sales in sport to develop skills needed to work as information specialists, facility managers, and retailers in the sports industry. Learners also complete an internship in a supervised, on-the-job setting to apply degree knowledge and develop sports-related experience. Students in SNHU’s online bachelor’s in sports management can also complete a business core, emphasizing the business aspects of sport. SNHU offers an accelerated BS to MS pathway to students that transfer in with at least 90 credit hours with a GPA of 2.75 or higher.
Grand Canyon University
College Choice Score: 95.5
Credit Hour Cost: $470
Grand Canyon University’s bachelor of science in sports management degree provides students interested in sports business and operations with fundamental knowledge and skills needed for future careers in the field. Housed in GCU’s Colangelo School of Business, the sports management program includes coursework in marketing, facility and event management, ethics, and regulations related to sport. Through GCU’s 120 credit hour degree, students learn theories and practical information applicable to sports in college, amateur, and professional settings. In addition to business and sports content, students develop a global awareness and focus on a Christian values in accordance with GCU’s mission.
Missouri Baptist University
College Choice Score: 93.5
Credit Hour Cost: $395
Located in St. Louis, MO, Missouri Baptist University offers a 128-credit hour undergraduate degree in sports management for students that want to organize and manage sports programs in their future careers. Learners study governance of sport, sports psychology, sociology of sport, and financial aspects of sport as they develop skills to become facility managers, sports administrators, and sports media professionals at interscholastic, intercollegiate, amateur, and professional levels. As part of the 42 upper division credit hours built into the bachelor’s degree, students complete an internship at the end of the program and a senior seminar to emphasize trends, careers, and potential further study in the field.
University of Minnesota—Crookston
College Choice Score: 93
Credit Hour Cost: $395.47
The sport and recreation management bachelor of science degree offered online by the University of Minnesota Crookston includes 120 credit hours of coursework, with 62 credits of major-specific content. Students study core program subjects including sports management, sports leadership, the psychology of sport, and sport law and governance as they develop competencies to work in the sports industry. Through interactive online classrooms and an field-experience internship, learners acquire and apply fundamentals of sport theory and practices to written assignments and team-based projects. A Capstone class provides students the opportunity to build a portfolio based on what they have learned and implemented throughout the course of the program.
College Choice Score: 92.75
Credit Hour Cost: $350
Designed to provide students with specialized knowledge and skills applicable to the sports industry, Shorter University in Rome, GA offers a 120-credit hour bachelor of business administration in sports management program online. Learners complete coursework designed to train them to become sports managers and administrators in private, public, and commercial settings. Core sports management classes include legal aspects of sport, ethics in sport, and event and facility management; the business core emphasizes economics, communication, and managerial training. Students can also take program electives in coaching, sports psychology, and sports media to emphasize their personal interests and professional goals. Practicum and internship options give students the opportunity to work in the sports industry, gaining valuable hands-on experience in anticipation of their future careers.
United States Sports Academy
College Choice Score: 92.25
Credit Hour Cost: $395
As one of four majors within the United States Sports Academy’s bachelor of sports science program, the sports management program prepares students for careers in sports information, athletic-department management, and facilities management. Learners study personnel and organizational management in sport, finance and accounting as it relates to sports business, and sports law before completing a senior research project. During the project, students conduct field-based research and analyze data and produce a paper on their findings. Students can emphasize sports security, focusing on sports emergency management; information security in sport; and the concepts, principles, and theories of sport security. Applicants must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours of college coursework before admission to the bachelor of sports science program.
College Choice Score: 92
Credit Hour Cost: $570
Established in 1890, Post University in Waterbury, CT, offers an online bachelor of science in sports management designed to prepare students for careers in sports administration, facilities management, and sports marketing. Core major classes on sport and society, sports law, and sport economics provide learners with theories and concepts of sport applicable to business contexts. Post also offers two degree concentrations: sports communication and sports psychology. The sports communication concentration assesses sports broadcasting, media, and overall sports communication while the psychology emphasis explores personality theories as they relate to sports and the sports industry. The program also includes an internship for students gain hands-on experience at a sports organization, non-profit institution, or other location to advance their career goals.
Toccoa Falls College
College Choice Score: 91.75
Credit Hour Cost: $889
Based in Toccoa Falls, GA, Toccoa Falls College offers an online sports management bachelor’s degree taught from a biblical perspective. As a Christian college, Toccoa Falls emphasizes faith and practice in a sports management curriculum designed to provide students with best business practices, ethical foundations of business and sport, and service and leadership. Students learn to apply biblical principles to media, events, facilities, and other aspects of the sports industry. Ideal minors for sports management majors include organizational leadership, physical education coaching, and nonprofit business administration. Applicants need to submit a personal testimony with their formal application, transcripts, and appropriate test scores.
Colorado Mesa University
College Choice Score: 91.25
Credit Hour Cost: $406
Colorado Mesa University’s online bachelor of science degree in sports management includes classes to develop critical thinking skills, communication acumen, analytical tools, and qualitative fluency applicable to business and sport. Students study the role of sport in society and how it intersects with business, marketing, media, and economics. Learners also investigate sports theory, governance, and leadership in anticipation of a career within amateur, high school, intercollegiate, and professional sport groups. The 120-credit hour program also includes an internship for students to apply theoretical and practical knowledge. CMU offers a master’s degree in sports management online for students that want to continue on to graduate study.
College Choice Score: 91
Credit Hour Cost: $602
Mercy College offers an online bachelor of science in business administration with a concentration in sports management to students that want to work in sports facility management, high school and college athletics, and professional sports organizations. Mercy’s 120-credit hour program includes 27 credits hours of business coursework in topics including international business, financial management, and principles of marketing. Students also complete specialized classes in sports law, sports marketing, facility and event management, and sport and society to integrate business concepts and sports practices. By participating in real-life sports operations projects and gaining hands-on managerial experience during a required residency, learners develop sports management competencies applicable to their future careers.
College Choice Score: 91
Credit Hour Cost: $425
The bachelor’s degree in sports management from Midway University integrates coursework on the sports industry with practical business knowledge in finance, accounting, and marketing. Through Midway’s 120-credit hour curriculum, students study legal issues in sport, sports psychology, and sports communication to build competencies to work as business professionals in high school, college, amateur, and professional sports programs and organizations.Students also complete an internship to gain real-world experience in the field. In addition to transfer credits, applicants to Midway’s program can earn up to 21 credits for prior learning from military experience, portfolio assessment, examination, or through a workshop or program approved by the American Council of Education.