Hollywood is recession-proof, so the saying goes, and it seems to be true. But doesn’t it seem like sports never seem to be doing bad for themselves either? Not one but two major sports leagues have recently had lockouts while players and owners haggled over how to divvy up all the profits they are rolling in. In other words, a career in sports would be an excellent choice for a high school or college-age person weighing their prospects for the future. Whether you want to be the next Kobe or the next Costas, we’ve laid out 50 websites you’ll want to visit to make your dreams of a sports career a reality.
Skip the general job websites and stick with these .coms tailored to people looking for openings in the sports industry.
- JobsInSports.com: This should be your first stop for job opportunities like payroll specialist for the Miami Dolphins and vice president of business development for the NFL.
- WorkInSports.com: More than 7,000 employers post sports jobs at WorkInSports, which claims to have more traffic than all its competitors combined.
- mybestplay.com: This is really a job listing and recruitment network rolled into one. It’s great for helping backup players find teams around the world that need talent, as well as letting trainers and coaches find openings.
- TeamworkOnline.com: See for yourself how many online hires this site has set up by viewing their homepage. Today’s jobs include camp instructor for the Washington Wizards and event coordinator at University of Phoenix Stadium.
- SportsDiversityRecruiting.com: This company specializes in placing people from underrepresented groups like African-Americans, women, and gays and lesbians. They work with a wide range of sports jobs.
- WomenSportsJobs.com: For women specifically, this site offers job postings, resume and career counseling, and updates on sports jobs fairs, with a special section for pro athletes reentering the work force.
- SportsCareerFinder.com: Like the name suggests, this group wants to help you find a career in sports, from college sports to internships and full-time contracts with pro teams.
- espncareers.com: Use the site’s “Career Control Room” to get an idea where you might find a place at the hub for America’s sports news, then view available opportunities.
- sportscareers.com: Choose your category, like “fitness/coaching,” “media/PR,” or “management,” your desired position, and your location, and Sportscareers hooks you up with sports jobs in your area.
- Sportsjournalists.com: With its job listings and message board, “the gathering place for journalists” is a great resource for interacting with other sportswriters and keeping your finger on the pulse of American sports.
- gamefacesportsjobs.com: Game Face is a career placement company for sports marketers that can help you first break in, then move up at your company.
- sportsjobboard.com: There’s a monthly fee to search sports job listings, but consider it an investment with the potential for magnificent returns.
- IMGworld.com: Sports companies don’t come any bigger than IMG. Set your sights high and try to become one of their 3,000 employees worldwide by checking their job postings.
Playing college ball is pretty much a prerequisite for a career as a professional athlete. Use these sites to connect with recruiters and land a spot with a respected program.
- Takkle.com: Cracking the “featured athletes” section on Takkle, the Facebook of college sports networking, can be a springboard for a mention in Sports Illustrated or, better yet, an offer from a top school.
- PrepChamps.com: PrepChamps is a free service that lets high school athletes create a profile with their stats and highlight videos to raise their visibility with coaches.
- beRecruited.com: For athletes in some of the smaller sports like swimming and volleyball, beRecruited is a great site for networking with coaches and researching schools and scholarships.
- Sports-recruiting.com: This site helps put athletes in front of coaches from teams overseas and helps them make the transition to a new place when they are signed by a team.
- NCSAsports.org: This paid service connected more than 400,000 college coaches with athletes last year. Even if you decide not to hire them, sign up for the free monthly newsletter for helpful tips on getting picked up.
- NSR-inc.com: National Scouting Report boasts a 90% success rate for finding offers for prospects and claim to be referenced by more college coaches than any other recruiting service.
- sportsworx.com: With specific programs designed for kids from 3rd grade all the way through 12th grade, it’s never too early to get on the path to a career as an athlete.
- CPOA.com: For more than 25 years, College Prospects of America has been helping talented high school athletes and coaches find each other. It’s a very respected group with agents determined to help you get signed.
- collegerecruitingnetwork.com: It’s a relatively new player to the recruiting game, but CRN is a solid agency for athletes in a number of college sports.
- Varsityedge.com: The home of a helpful guide to college recruiting called The Making of a Student Athlete, this site delivers lots of helpful resources for players and their parents.
- wegotplayers.com: One hundred percent dedicated to soccer recruiting, this is a must-use resource if you want to increase your exposure to football clubs around the world.
These links are great resources for learning how to become a sports journalist, agent, scout, and more.
- Interview with Tom Jolly, Times sports editor: Former New York Times sports editor Tom Jolly gave this great interview to Sports Networker about how he broke in and his suggestions for others who want a job in sports.
- How to become a sports broadcaster: Former play-by-play man and sports talk host Michael Madden penned this lengthy, informative article on making it into “the booth.”
- Can a complete novice become a golf pro?: If you dream of a life on the PGA Tour links, you’ll want to follow the story of Dan McLaughlin, a former photographer trying to turn pro by practicing for 10,000 hours.
- CNBC’s Darren Rovell interview: Here the Sports Network has their gem of an interview with Sports Business Report host Darren Rovell on starting a career in sports.
- David Falk interview: Read Rovell’s conversation with super-agent David Falk (Michael Jordan’s agent) if you’re interested in becoming the next Scott Boras.
- When to turn pro in tennis: This is an insightful article for anyone considering trying to turn pro in tennis. It discusses the path two current stars took to get where they are today.
- Bill Simmons and Will Leitch: Stories of a Sports Blogger: This article lays out how two of the biggest names in sports blogging got their start. Hint: it starts with a love of the game.
- Interview: Carlos Gomez, MLB scout: This author and scout for the Arizona Diamondbacks lays out how he got his job, what life is like as a scout, and his favorite things about the job.
- Livestrong.com: This health and fitness site that partners with the Lance Armstrong Foundation has a wealth of how-to articles for starting a career in sports, from coaching to sports medicine.
- How to become a general manager: This ESPN article tells the story of how Masai Ujiri of the Denver Nuggets became the first African-born GM in NBA history. It will give you an idea of what it takes to become a team’s general manager.
- So You Wanna Be An Olympian?: This is the entertaining story of one professional athlete’s attempts to make the Beijing Olympics. It’s a required read for anyone who dreams of standing atop the winner’s podium one day.
- Becoming a professional fisherman: Professional bass fishing is a growing sport, and one that many outdoors lovers would kill to do for a living. But before you get ahead of yourself, read fishing star David Walker’s advice here.
- The 10 Best Starter Jobs In Pro Sports: Take a look at Forbes‘ picks for the 10 best jobs from which to launch your career in sports.
Virtually every profession related to sports has a national group dedicated to professionals in that field. Check out their web pages for job postings and to connect with others in the biz.
- nasnutrition.com: If your goal is to become a sports nutritionist, visit the website of the National Association of Sports Nutrition for info on becoming certified or to sign up for distance learning courses.
- NATA.com: The home of the National Athletic Trainers’ Association is the start of your journey on a career path to becoming a team trainer.
- sportscommissions.org: This is the official site for the only national organization for professionals in the sports event industry to network and find industry news and upcoming events.
- aahperd.org: Check out the “Careers” tab on the site for the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance if you are interested in a career in physical education.
- nirsa.org: If you can’t get enough of college rec sports, why not make it your life’s work? Your future colleagues in the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association are waiting for you.
- naso.org: Were you born to wear the black and white? If so, check out the page for the National Association of Sports Officials and soon you’ll be a man or woman in uniform.
- sportslaw.org: Any legal students out there looking for a specialty that’s not terribly dry? Give a thought to sports law and check out the site for the Sports Lawyers Association.
- sportsmarketingnetwork.com: Join some of the biggest names in sports marketers who serve groups like NASCAR, the PGA Tour, and CBS Sports here at the National Sports Marketing Network.
- nassm.com: The North American Society for Sport Management caters to sports marketing, sports personnel management, and more. The students tab is the place you’ll want to click.
- pba.com: Can you roll a 215 with one hand tied behind your back? Then strap on those dorky shoes and join the Professional Bowlers Association.
- appliedsportpsych.org: More and more athletes are recognizing the power of the mental aspect of sports. If sports psychology interests you, poke around the Association for Applied Sport Psychology website.
- naspaa.net: Want to hear your voice booming out across stadium speakers reaching thousands of spectators? The National Association of Public Address Announcers is the place to start.
- pmai.org: This is the home of the Sports Photographers Association of America, created to help sports photogs connect and succeed. Check them out if you want to get as close to the game as possible without putting on a jersey.