Announcement RE: JD Students Interested in Sports Law

Announcement RE: JD Students Interested in Sports Law

Dear ASU Law Students,

Welcome back for the Spring 2020 semester! We are writing to inform you of some changes the law school has implemented that affect the JD Concentration in Sports Law and Business (SLB).  For a variety of reasons, the law school administration is transitioning from formal concentrations and requested that our SLB leadership consider eliminating the JD Concentration in Sports Law and Business.  We would still offer all the classes, the journal, etc.  We agreed to discontinue the concentration for students entering ASU Law after August 9, 2020.  However, you will still have the option to pursue this concentration if you are a current student. Under ASU rules, your transcript will not indicate that you have completed the concentration requirements (one reason the law school is moving away from it).

In our experience, employers are far more interested in what classes you take than whether you satisfy various university rules related to concentrations (another reason to step away).  Dean Menkhus has offered to write a letter to any potential employers for students who feel it is important to have official confirmation of their focus in Sports Law and Business.  You will need to declare your interest by e-mailing Professor Don Gibson at not later than March 1, 2020 at 5:00PM AZ time.

Please be assured that our commitment to JD students interested in careers in the sports industry has not diminished.  We will continue to offer our concurrent JD/MSLB degree and we will offer sports law and business courses to the JD students.  This change will allow our faculty and staff to spend more time assisting JD students with journal submissions, research and writing projects, academic advising and career advice. 

For those of you who are committed to maximizing your commitment to sports and law, we want to highlight and focus on the strength of our Sports Law and Business Master’s degree and the benefits of obtaining both a JD and MSLB degree.  As a JD student, you are eligible to enroll in the concurrent (joint) JD/MSLB program.  JD students who opt to enroll in the concurrent JD/MSLB program receive: (1) an additional academic degree; (2) exposure to business elements of sports through WP Carey faculty (and faculty associates from the sports industry); (3) full access to the course offerings in the SLB program; and (4) academic/career support from the Sports Law and Business Program professionals.  In addition, the time commitment to obtain both degrees concurrently is significantly less than if both degrees were pursued separately.  With both degrees, you will emerge as an extremely well-prepared and more competitive candidate for a career in the sports industry.  If you were previously interested in or are presently pursuing the sports law concentration, you should consider enrolling in the concurrent degree program.  You will need to formally apply for admission to the MSLB portion of the program.  Professor Gibson and Sara Perry can help you with that process.

Even if you are not pursuing a formal degree program involving sports law and business, please remember that you are always welcome to enroll in any of our JD-level Sports Law and Business courses (and up to 6 credits of MSLB courses with approval).

If you have any questions about this change or need help deciding what to do next, please feel free to reach out to Professor Gibson, and he will be happy to meet with you.


Don E. N. Gibson, Professor of Practice, Allan “Bud” Selig Sports Law and Business Program

Aaron Hernandez, Director, Allan “Bud” Selig Sports Law and Business Program