Chapter 1 History of Sports Management

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Sports Management Structures
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clubs, leagues, professional tournaments
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The Club System
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England: birthplace of modern sport and sport management 18th century: development of sport clubs with limited membership 19th century: continued clubs evolution with standardizing of rules, settling disputes, and organizing schedules
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Thoroughbred Racing
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Races drew broad and diverse audience with no admission charge Racing existed for entertainment only, not financial gain; prestige more important 1830s: rail system allowed horses to compete nationally Complex system: desire of owners to breed and train fast horses and the increasing complexity of gambling
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The Jockey Club
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1750 Settled disputes, established rules, determined eligibility, designated officials, regulated breeding, and punished unscrupulous participants Organized, sponsored and promoted local events Strong national governing body: establish rules, standards and a mechanism for resolving disputes Served as a model for wider sport management practices in England
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The Modern Olympic Games
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International club event (little resemblance to ancient Olympics 1896-first modern Olympics 1850-revival: festivals in England Pierre de Coubertin: English revivals and Victorian notions Built off of peace movements and introduced the concept of amateur Olympic Games every 4 years
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Present-Day Club Structure
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Serve broad membership and manage elite sport enterprise (becoming international) Organize youth teams and academies, adult rec leagues and social events Built-in memberships/loyal fan base Characterized by nonprofit statues and exclusive membership (Augusta: former male-only memb) Change from European club system to US league system
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American Structures
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European club system didn;t work for the US: lack of aristocratic tradition and prohibition against gambling League structure arose out of harness racing, sport of the common person Better spectator sport than thoroughbred racing: Sprint vs. 4-mile race; horses could compete daily, large field of competitors Managed by track owners and race promoters: create spectator interest for sport Issues: race fixing, management lacking credibility led to loss of popularity
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Leagues
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Baseball: first to adopt leagues Cincinnati Red Stockings: first pro team Controversy: some some teams paid and others didn’t 1871: Creation of National Association of Professional Baseball Players Important of ‘breakeven’ financial interests of individual clubs
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William Hulbert
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Czar of Baseball 1876: took over NLPBP Believed stability achieved only if teams were run like business Teams should compete: understood without strict rules forcing honest competition, collusion would occur Believed owners must take financial risks: abandoning seasons early to prevent losses in short term eroded long-term faith of public Owners must field competitive teams to be profitable Integrity of baseball was suspect as long as the players’ honesty was questionable: gambling prohibited and ticket prices raised
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Early Success of National League
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Excitement of pennant race honoring of contracts (reserve system) Favorable media attention Appealed to fans’ loyalty and pride in their cities Early form of revenue sharing Rules that distributed talent
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Leagues Today
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Successful contemporary commercial sport leagues depend on consolidated league play with strong centralized control and regulation Single-entity structures: MLS, MLL, AFL
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Professional Sport Tournaments
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Pro Golf: early pro golfers were instructors and caddies Pro leagues failed to capture public interest or attract golf pros Failed to generate gate revenues Stability of tournaments was achieved when prize money was put up by companies and corporate sponsors
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Corcoran’s Tournament
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Fred Corcoran: Architect of golf tournament Celebrity, politician, manufacturer, charity, town, and product gained exposure Used athletes and golf tournaments to sell advertising space to the public Bing Crosby and Bob Hope: created charity golf tournaments in pro-am format for WWII fund-raising
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After War for Corcoran’s
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Good business = tax deductions Charities encourage volunteers and good publicity for tournaments Golf equipment manufacturers paid Corcoran to create golfer association and arrange tournaments using prize money as player payments to reduce cost of hiring player representatives

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