USC Gould Search

Course Descriptions

Course Descriptions

Sports Law in Practice (Fall 2017)

  • Course Number: LAW-718
  • Class Number: 03406
  • Instructor: Kelly Crabb

Course Description

Sports Law in Practice will focus on the fundamental legal and commercial aspects of sports: ticketing, licensing, sponsorships, broadcasting and pageantry, including a look at the legal principles and structures affecting athletes.  The primary focus of the course is to provide students with a basic knowledge of the principles and practices related to the organization and execution of a successful sports establishment and/or sporting event.

Objectives:  Students who successfully complete this course will learn the basic legal and business aspects of: (a) the structure employed by international and local sports organizations; (b) the employment and participation of athletes; (c) the major commercial aspects of sports practice—i.e., contracts, copyright and trademarks (with a taste of antitrust law); (d) selling tickets to sports events; (e) merchandise licensing; (f) sponsorships; (g) commercial endorsements; (h) initiatives against “ambush marketing;” (i) sports broadcasting; and (j) the pageantry of sports—i.e., opening and closing ceremonies, half-time performances, award ceremonies, etc.

Class Structure:  Students will participate in class discussions and, in part, in groups or “teams.” Each team will be given an assignment to organize and represent, for the purposes of in-class group simulations and presentations, one or more of the following interconnected constituencies: (a) the League; (b) Team Owners; (c) Players Association/Player Agents; (d) Organizing Committee; (e) Sponsors; (f) Venue Owners; (g) Broadcasters; (h) Ticket Vendor; (i) Official Licensees; and (j) Producer of the Championship Entertainment.

Grading:  The current thinking is to base the course grade on the following six areas (with the percentages subject to change):

·         Class participation in discussions/simulations, etc. – 8 points

·         Brief (no more than 5 minute) discussion of sports issue in the news – 7 points

·         Analytic thought piece (3 pages or less) – 20 points

·         Five written quizzes based on reading (closed book, mostly multiple choice) – 20 points

·         Culminating group exercise – 15 points

·         Final exam – 30 points

Course Details

  • Unit Value: 2
  • Grading Options: Numerical or CR/D/F
  • Schedule: M 4:00 pm - 5:50 pm
  • Room Number: Room 101
  • Exam: In-class exam
  • Writing Requirement: No
  • Skills/Experiential Unit Requirement: yes
  • Participation: Required and graded
  • Enrollment Limitation: 30 students