By Robert H. Ruxin
Offers athletes, coaches, households and their advisors with clever, sensible recommendation on settling on an agent.
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Additional resources for An athlete's guide to agents
The agent for an athlete playing an individual sport books exhibitions and special competitions to supplement the athlete's winnings from the regular tour or circuit. Like an actor, an athlete can capitalize on his or her name through product endorsements, public appearances, and other business opportunities. Agents for individual-sport athletessuch as golfers, tennis players, skiers, and runnersmust be particularly adept at creating and negotiating endorsements. In the team-sport context, this function is typically less significant.
Allow An athlete to retain an agent specifically limited in writing to representing him or her in those sports in which he or she competes as a professional. Allow An athlete to retain an attorney for matters of a personal nature, including evaluating the terms of a proposed professional contract, providing the attorney does not represent the athlete in negotiating such a contract and has no contact with the pro sports organization and does not market the individual's athletic ability or reputation in a particular sport.
Consider Lance Mehl whose salary went from $60,000 in 1983 to $550,000 in 1984 merely because his agent was able to put a proposed deal from the New York Generals in front of the New York Jets. When Mark Gastineau increased his salary from $250,000 to $620,000 in one year, agents for other defensive linemen used "Gastineau money" as their benchmark. Quarterbacks such as Brian Sipe and Cliff Stoudt more than doubled their salaries by jumping leagues. After the USFL folded, NFL salaries for draft choices declined modestly.