Sports Agent Jobs – Law Firms

Another route many athletes are choosing to take is to sign with lawyers and law firms that specialize in representing athletes. In this kind of relationship, the lawyer is used to negotiate contracts, while the athlete seeks additional representation for marketing deals – the idea being that the athlete can get the best services for each type of deal. Another key difference is that lawyers charge for their services on an hourly basis rather than on commission, saving perhaps millions of dollars for marquee players. Lon Babby is infamous for bringing his practice of using billable hours to his handling of his baseball and basketball clients. The Sports Business Journal estimates the average commission on a player’s first contract at 5%. Babby’s client, 2003’s No. 2 pick in MLB’s amateur player draft Rickie Weeks received an estimated $4 million signing bonus. A typical agent would earn $200,000 for very little work. Babby, on the other hand, bills Weeks hourly, somewhere in the range of $500 per hour, saving his client thousands of dollars. Monetary savings aside, this type of relationship has several benefits and drawbacks:

Agent (Lawyer) Benefits:

  • A lower price for representation is attractive to athletes, increasing potential to sign more clients
  • Focus on legal aspects is attractive to athletes who wish to seek marketing representation elsewhere

Athlete Benefits:

  • It is cheaper than paying an agent on commission
  • It allows the athlete to seek marketing and endorsement representation from specialized agencies

Mutual Drawbacks:

  • Work based on billable hours sometimes leads to tension between the two parties because time spent together could be construed as time on the clock
  • Many athletes seek mentorship and guidance from their agents beyond basic legal work, but billable hours disincents the athlete and agent to build a relationship.


Sports Agent Jobs – Law Firms with Athlete Clients