sports administration masters

In this article, we profile the top 50 most affordable online graduate sports administration degree programs of 2021.

Not all sports administration graduate degree programs are equally ranked and affordable. Choosing the right program can make a difference in your ability to find work following graduation. To improve your odds for securing an administrative or leadership role in the sports industry, look for accredited and reputable programs. Online options are now available so that you don’t have to step away from your current job while earning a master’s degree.

Ranking Methodology for the Most Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs

This is a list of the top 50 most affordable online graduate sports administration degree programs offered by accredited colleges and universities. The programs listed below are accredited online graduate sports administration degree programs with annual tuition and fees less than $25,100. We examined over 100 accredited institutions listed by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) College Navigator and U.S. News and World Report that offered sports administration, sport management, or closely related degree programs online. We verified accreditation on the institution’s website and reviewed program rankings with U.S. News and World Report. From our original pool of schools, we selected the 50 most affordable online sports administration programs and listed them according to raw affordability.

Below is our list of the top 30 most affordable online graduate sports administration degree programs listed in order of affordability.

#50 – Northeastern University

Online Master’s in Sports Leadership

Boston, Massachusetts

Website

Northeastern University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
In 12-18 months – earn an online graduate sports administration degree from Northeastern University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $25,085

Whether you’re seeking part- or full-time instruction in an online master’s in sports administration program, Northeastern University offers viable options. The online sports leadership graduate degree is COSMA-accredited and takes just 12-18 months to complete. What makes the Northeastern sport leadership program stand out from the rest is the option of specialized focus. Students may elect to choose a concentration emphasizing professional or collegiate athletics. All courses are delivered online and cover topics like ethical leadership, leadership and organization in sport, sports law, and sports media relations. In addition to being fully accredited, Northeastern ranks with U.S. News and World Report. These rankings include #49 in best national universities, #102 in best value schools, and #11 in most innovative schools.

#49 – Southern Nazarene University

Online Master’s in Sports Management & Administration

Bethany, Oklahoma

Website

Southern Nazarene University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Affordable and ranked! SNU – a top choice for online graduate sports administration degree programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $23,440

For individuals with work experience in athletics or the desire to establish a long-term career in athletic administration, Southern Nazarene University offers a master’s in sports administration online degree program. The online graduate degree can be completed entirely online or by attending classes one night each week. Courses cover topics like ethics in sport management, media production for sport managers, organizational communication, social issues in sport, and sport marketing. Unique features about the program include the school’s valuable networking opportunities with the Detroit Pistons and Toronto Blue Jays. Also, Southern Nazarene ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 68th best reginal university in the West.

#48 – Fairleigh Dickinson University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Madison, New Jersey

Website

Fairleigh Dickinson University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Accredited and online! Fairleigh Dickinson University’s online sports administration programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $23,110

Fairleigh Dickinson University offers an accredited online master’s in sports administration (sport management) that consists of 36 credits and emphasizes the practical and theoretical aspects associated with sport. Curriculum places a strong emphasis on leadership and management. Classes are delivered online and cover a range of pertinent topics like financial administration in sports, legal issues in the domestic and international sports industry, sports administration research and policy analysis, and strategic planning and evaluation. Fairleigh Dickinson stands out among other programs due to its study abroad in England opportunity. Students spend eight days studying and exploring cultures and history in the UK. Fairleigh is fully accredited and ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 50th best regional university in the North.

#47 – University of the Southwest

Online MBA in Sport Management and Recreation

Hobbs, New Mexico

Website

University of the Southwest - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Earn an online MBA in sport management from University of the Southwest.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $22,500

The University of the Southwest offers online sports administration programs, such as the online MBA in sport management and recreation. The online MBA covers relevant topics business and sport management leaders face on a day-to-day basis. Courses topics include physical education and sports administration, probabilities and statistics, sports management economy and finance, and sports marketing. The program is fully accredited and ranked with U.S. News and World Report. In fact, University of the Southwest ranks #95-#124 in best regional universities in the West and #108 in top performers on social mobility. Also, the online MBA programs (including sport management) rank #245-#321 out of more than 1,200 programs surveyed by U.S. News.

#46 – Southern New Hampshire University

Online Master’s in Sports Management

Manchester, New Hampshire

Website

Southern New Hampshire University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
No GRE or GMAT required! SNHU’s online master’s in sports management.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $18,810

Southern New Hampshire University’s online graduate sports administration degree program is recognized as one of the most affordable on our list. The program provides training for graduates to break into the competitive field of athletic and sports administration. Classes are delivered online and taught by SNHU professors with relevant and real-world experience. Courses cover topics like finance and economics of sport, internationalization of sport business, management of sport organizations, research methods in sport management, and sport and society. There is no GRE or GMAT requirement for admission, making the program appealing to individuals who have been out of school for a while. In addition to being accredited, SNHU ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 75th best regional university in the North.

#45 – Wayne State University

Online Master’s in Sports Administration

Detroit, Michigan

Website

Wayne State University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Wayne State University – a top choice for online graduate sports administration degrees.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $18,226

Wayne State University’s master’s in sports administration online program is designed to prepare students for careers in the sports industry. Entirely online, the program requires the completion of 30 credits. Courses cover topics like equity and access in sport, introduction to sports administration, risk management in PE and sport, sport finance, and sports marketing. In addition to courses, an internship or master’s thesis is also required for the completion of the degree. Good news for applicants who have been out of school a while, as there is no GRE or GMAT requirement. In addition to being fully accredited, Wayne State ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, rankings for Wayne State include #249 in best national universities and #121 in top public schools.

#44 – Franklin Pierce University

Online MBA in Sports Management

Rindge, New Hampshire

Website

Franklin Pierce University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Online MBA in sports management – an ideal choice at Franklin Pierce University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $17,200

The Franklin Pierce University online graduate sports administration degree is designed to develop students for leadership and administration roles in the sport industry. The program offers an MBA with sports management emphasis, but to be eligible, applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution. Competency in accounting, business, computers, and statistics is also helpful. Online courses cover topics in business and sport management. These courses include economics for managers, facilities management, financial management, media relations and technology in the sports industry, and operations management for leaders. Franklin Pierce is fully accredited and its graduate business programs have received IACBE-accreditation. Also, the school ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 136th-176th best regional university in the North.

#43 – Gonzaga University

Online Master’s in Sport and Athletic Administration

Spokane, Washington

Website

Gonzaga University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Ranked and affordable! Gonzaga University’s master’s in sports administration online program.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $17,096

Gonzaga University, a top-ranked private institution, offers a master’s in sports administration online program designed for busy and working students. The program prepares students for careers in sport and athletic administration and management. By earning 31 credits over a 2-year completion time, students gain knowledge and skills needed to work in the sport industry. A total of ten courses are required. These courses cover topics like ethical and legal aspects in sports, sport and athletic promotions, sport and athletics in social context, and sport media and communication. Gonzaga ranks with all major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, recent U.S. News rankings include #80 in best national universities.

#42 – Canisius College

Online Master’s in Sport Administration

Buffalo, New York

Website

Canisius College - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Canisius College – Offering affordable online graduate sports administration degrees.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $15,480

Canisius College offers affordable online graduate sports administration programs, including the master’s in sport administration. The flexibly designed program emphasizes relevant and emerging trends seen in the sport industry. Also, students complete rigorous coursework teamed with internships that prepare them for management roles in the field. Courses cover topics like leadership in sport, professional sports, risk management and contract negotiation, sport finance and business, and strategic sport marketing. Recent graduates of Canisius College’s sport administration program have acquired positions with the Chicago White Sox, Penn State Football, and Syracuse University. Canisius ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 19th best regional university in the North.

#41 – Virginia Commonwealth University

Online Master’s in Sport Leadership

Richmond, Virginia

Website

Virginia Commonwealth University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
A degree in sports leadership that’s ranked and accredited – Virginia Commonwealth University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $15,086

Virginia Commonwealth University’s online master’s in sport leadership prepares graduates to assume leadership roles in sports facilities and organizations. The program consists of 36 credits and explores a range of management, business, and sport industry topics. These courses include leadership models in sport, marketing of sport, research methods in sport, sociology of sport, and sport business. In addition to being fully accredited, Virginia Commonwealth ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, recent rankings with U.S. News include #160 in best national universities and #105 in best value schools. Several online graduate programs at VCU have received top rankings.

#40 – Fresno Pacific University

Online Master’s in Sport Administration

Fresno, California

Website

Fresno Pacific University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Ranked with U.S. News! Fresno Pacific’s online graduate sports administration degree programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $15,000

Fresno Pacific University’s online sports administration programs include the master’s in sport administration. The graduate program is highly affordable and flexibly designed, fitting the needs of busy and working students. Courses cover industry-related topics like legal aspects of kinesiology and sport, research methods in kinesiology, sport career development, sport leadership and administration, sport marketing, and sport revenue and finance. To be eligible for admission, applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree in sport administration or closely related discipline, and have a minimum GPA of 2.75. Fresno Pacific ranks with major publications. In fact, U.S. News and World Report ranks FPU #37 in best regional universities in the West, #27 in best value schools, and #3 in top performers on social mobility.

#39 – University of Cincinnati

Online Master’s in Sport Administration and Sport Management

Cincinnati, Ohio

Website

University of Cincinnati - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
University of Cincinnati offers a fully online master’s in sports administration and sport management!

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $14,468

The University of Cincinnati offers a fully online master’s in sports administration and sport management for individuals seeking careers in a variety of sports-related careers. Graduates have the opportunity to sit for the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association Certification Program that provides important certification that increases job opportunities. The program welcomes individuals from any academic background and discipline, provided they have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution. In addition, students need a 3.0 minimum GPA. Those with GPAs less than 3.0 can substitute this requirement if they have at least three years of professional experience. Cincinnati ranks #143 in national universities according to U.S. News and World Report.

#38 – New England College

Online Master’s in Sport and Recreation Management

Henniker, New Hampshire

Website

New England College - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
No GRE or GMAT required! New England College – a top choice for an online master’s in sport management.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $14,228

New England College offers an online graduate sports administration degree as part of its MBA program. The program is designed for current or aspiring intercollegiate coaches. Designed for both full- and part-time professionals, the program is an excellent option for those that seek flexibility and rigor. Sports-related specialties include current issues in sports and recreation, management and practice in sports and recreation, and legal issues in sports. Application requirements include resume, transcripts, and bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university. No GRE or GMAT testing required. The program is fully online. New England College ranks #136 in regional universities North by U.S. News and World Report.

#37 – University of Louisville

Online Master’s in Sport Administration

Louisville, Kentucky

Website

University of Louisville - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Affordability! University of Louisville’s online master’s in sport administration.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $13,196

The University of Louisville offers a master’s in sports administration online administered by the faculty and staff of the College of Education and Human Development. The program admits students on a rolling basis three times per, year so there is no need to wait to apply. Candidates must submit a resume, 500-word statement of purpose, two letters of recommendation, and transcripts. The 36-credit degree features courses such as financial principles of sport, legal aspects in the sport industry, and sport communication theory and practice. The University of Louisville ranks in seven U.S. News and World Report categories including #176 in national universities.

#36 – Old Dominion University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Norfolk, Virginia

Website

Old Dominion University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Ranked with U.S. News! ODU’s online master’s in sports administration.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $13,128

Old Dominion University offers an online master’s in sports administration through its Darden College of Education and Professional Studies and the Department of Human Movement Sciences. The program consists of 36 credits that allow students to maintain balance between their personal obligations and working towards a graduate degree online. The program is known for its flexibility and rigor. Students can choose from internship or thesis options. Graduates have gone on to work in professional and collegiate sports, high school athletics, government, and private industry. Old Dominion University is ranked #258 in national universities according to U.S. News and World Report.

#35 – SUNY Cortland

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Cortland, New York

Website

SUNY Cortland - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
SUNY Cortland – a top school for affordable online graduate sports administration programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $13,046

SUNY Cortland’s online master’s in sport management program requires the completion of 24 credit hours of online classes followed by six credits of an internship or master’s thesis. Required courses cover industry-related topics like business and finance of sport, policy and strategic management in sport organizations, research methods in sport management, sport enterprise, sport law, and sport marketing. Admission to the program requires an undergraduate degree with at least a 2.8 GPA. Also, the GRE or GMAT taken within the last five years must be documented if the applicant’s undergraduate GPA is less than 3.3. For those with a higher GPA, a graduate exam waiver is offered. SUNY Cortland ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, SUNY Cortland’s rankings include #71 in best regional universities in the North.

#34 – Louisiana State University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Website

Louisiana State University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
LSU’s online master’s in sport management takes 12 months to complete.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $13,035

Louisiana State University offers an online graduate sports administration degree accredited by the Commission on Sport Management Accreditation. Application requirements include an accredited bachelor’s degree, 3.0 grade point average, three letters of recommendation, and combined GRE score of 295. Courses may include administrative problems in kinesiology, financial issues in sport, and organizational behavioral and development in sport. The 36-credit degree can be completed in just 12 months and available fully online. The program is an excellent option for those seeking flexibility along with challenging coursework in an online environment. LSU is ranked #153 in national universities according to U.S. News and World Report.

#33 – Tiffin University

Online MBA in Sports Management

Tiffin, Ohio

Website

Tiffin University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Tiffin University – ranked and accredited – online graduate sports administration degree programs!

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $13,000

Tiffin University’s offers an online MBA in sports management for individuals seeking online completion business and sport programs. The 14-month MBA is recognized primarily for its affordability, boasting no tuition increases in the past five years. Courses are delivered entirely online and taught by Tiffin’s esteemed faculty. These courses cover topics like business strategies in sports, communication and fund raising in sport, personnel management in sport, and sport mentorship. As stated above, the average completion time for full-time students is 14 months, while the part-time student typically completes the degree in less than 2.5 years. In addition to being fully accredited, Tiffin ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report as the 119th-156th best regional university in the Midwest.

#32 – California University of Pennsylvania

Online Master’s in Sport Management

California, Pennsylvania

Website

California University of Pennsylvania - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
13-17 months to earn an online master’s in sport management at California University of Pennsylvania.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $12,919

California University of Pennsylvania offers a master’s in sports administration online that prepares graduate for successful careers in coaching, management, and a wide variety of top positions within the sport industry. Students can choose from concentrations in intercollegiate athletic administration, sport management generalist, and strategic sport analysis. Students can complete the program in just 13 months through the accelerated cohort or 17 months through the traditional cohort. Applicants must have a 3.0 GPA and an accredited bachelor’s degree. Those with a GPA less than 3.0 must also provide two letters of recommendation. GRE scores are not required. California University of Pennsylvania is ranked ##136 in regional universities North according to U.S. News and World Report.

#31 – University of Northern Colorado

Online Master’s in Sport Administration

Greeley, Colorado

Website

University of Northern Colorado - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Affordability! University of Northern Colorado – a top pick for cheap online graduate sports administration degree programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $12,894

University of Northern Colorado’s online sports administration programs include the master’s in sport and exercise science with sport administration emphasis. The program has earned top rankings from prestigious publications, including Sport Business International magazine and U.S. News and World Report. In addition to school rankings, the expansive network of sport administration alumni from University of Northern Colorado set this program apart from competitors. The school’s network of alumni includes professionals working with the Denver Broncos, New York Yankees, and U.S. Olympic sport organizations. Upon completion of required courses, students have the option of also completing a thesis. However, a non-thesis pathway is also offered.

#30 – Colorado State University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Fort Collins, Colorado

Website

Colorado State University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Earn a sport management online degree at Colorado State University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $12,871

Colorado State University’s master’s in sports administration online offers students the opportunity to earn a graduate degree from a nationally ranked university in a flexible format in a growing industry. Students can choose from four specialty tracks including business foundations, generalist, marketing, or sports media and communications. The tracks allow students to focus on a specific career trajectory based on their interests and make them more employable by learning in-demand skills and knowledge. Courses vary depending on specialty track but may include communications and media in sport, economics and data analytics, sport governance and policy, and sport facility and event management. CSU ranks #153 nationally by U.S. News and World Report.

#29 – University of Florida

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Gainesville, Florida

Website

University of Florida - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Accredited and ranked! UF’s online graduate sports administration degree programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $12,737

University of Florida’s master’s in sport management may be completed entirely online and for an affordable price. What makes University of Florida’s online sport management degree unique is its number of specialization options and access to large football and collegiate athletic programs. Students have the option of choosing a specialization to enhance their online master’s in sport management degree. These specializations include athlete development, high performance coaching, or sport law. Also, students electing to complete the athlete development specialization become qualified to pursue certification through the Professional Association of Athlete Development Specialists (PAADS), which is rare among sport management programs. UF ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report, so you’ll also get a quality degree and solid return on investment.

#28 – Campbellsville University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Campbellsville, Kentucky

Website

Campbellsville University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
IACBE-accredited online master’s in sport management – Campbellsville University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $12,690

Campbellsville University offers online graduate sports administration programs that include the master’s in sport management. The 30-credit, IACBE-accredited degree presents eight-week courses, rigorous curriculum, and a fast completion time of two years. What sets Campbellsville’s program apart from other sport management degrees is the emphasis availability. Students may tailor their degree in areas like administration and marketing. Classes are delivered online and cover topics like ethics in sport, facility development and management, human resource management, managerial finance, and sport administration. Admission to the program requires an official college transcript and undergraduate GPA of 3.0. In addition to being fully accredited, Campbellsville University ranks with U.S. News and World Report. These rankings include #94 in best regional universities in the South and #93 in top performers on social mobility.

#27 – The University of Texas at Austin

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Austin, Texas

Website

The University of Texas at Austin - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Ranked and affordable! Online graduate sports administration degree programs at UT Austin.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,998

The University of Texas at Austin offers online graduate sports administration programs, including the master’s in sport management. With no GRE requirement and small online class sizes, the program stands out among others. Courses are delivered online and taught by UT Austin’s experienced faculty. Courses cover topics like ethics in sport, human resource management in sport organizations, leadership in sport organizations, legal issues in sport, sport finance, and theories and issues in sport management. University of Texas ranks with all major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, 2021 rankings include #42 in best national universities and #176 in best value schools.

#26 – Millersville University of Pennsylvania

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Millersville, Pennsylvania

Website

Millersville University of Pennsylvania - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Millersville University of Pennsylvania’s master’s in sports administration online is ranked and accredited.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,930

Millersville University of Pennsylvania’s master’s in sports administration online focuses on developing students’ leadership and management skills within the context of sport. Alumni work in various leadership and management capacities within professional, collegiate, scholastic, and recreational sports and fitness. The program provides an interdisciplinary perspective that covers pertinent topics in management, law, education, marketing, and research that provides the graduate with a balanced perspective. Admission is open to those with a regionally accredited bachelor’s degree and 2.75 GPA. Those with a GPA of 3.0 or higher are waived from taking standardized tests. The institution is ranked #96 in northern universities by U.S. News and World Report.

#25 – Clemson University

Online Master’s in Athletic Leadership

Clemson, South Carolina

Website

Clemson University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Affordability and prestige! Clemson University – a top pick for online master’s in sports administration degrees.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,796

Clemson University’s name is synonymous with collegiate sports, so it should come as no surprise that the university offers a top master’s in sports administration online program. For less than $12,000 per year, graduate students may earn a master’s in athletic leadership online. Courses cover a wide range of industry-related topics like ethical issues in intercollegiate athletics, legal issues in intercollegiate athletics, marketing and communications responsibilities, and sociological dynamics in intercollegiate athletics. In addition to offering reputable intercollegiate athletic programs, Clemson ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, Clemson ranks #74 in best national universities.

#24 – University of Kansas

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Lawrence, Kansas

Website

University of Kansas - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
University of Kansas – affordable online graduate sports administration degree program offerings!

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $11,045

Known for its rich tradition in collegiate athletics, the University of Kansas offers an online graduate sports administration degree through its School of Education and Human Sciences. The program features a unique mentoring component allowing existing students to be mentored by a sport graduate management. The curriculum’s applied philosophy concentrates on critical decision-making skills and applied knowledge that helps graduates leave the program with the ability to hit the ground running on their careers. First-year courses include ethics in the sport industry, organizational behavior in sport, socio-cultural dimensions of sport, sport finance, and sport marketing. Kansas is ranked #124 nationally by U.S. News and World Report.

#23 – Lasell University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Newton, Massachusetts

Website

Lasell University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
No GRE or GMAT and 12-24 months to finish! Lasell’s online graduate sports administration program.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,960

Lasell College’s online sports administration programs include the sport management master’s degree, which can be earned entirely online. What makes the Lasell program unique is the access to major sport teams in the nearby Boston areas. The program takes 12-24 months to complete, and there is no GRE or GMAT requirement for admission. Also, several specialization options allow students to tailor their degree toward areas of interest or to meet career goals. Specializations include athletic administration, parks and recreation, sport leadership, and sport tourism and hospitality management. Lasell ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 125th best regional university in the North.

#22 – Wesley College

Online Master’s in Sport Leadership

Dover, Delaware

Website

Wesley College - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Wesley College’s online master’s in sport leadership takes under 24 months to earn.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,800

Wesley College’s online master’s in sports administration programs include the master’s in sport leadership or M.A.S.L. The program can be completed as a fully online degree and takes just under 24 months. Two tracks of study allow students to tailor their degree toward areas of interest. Specialization tracks include coaching and sport management. Admission to the program is highly competitive. Applicants must hold an earned baccalaureate degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA. In addition to stringent admission requirements, the school stands out among competitors thanks to its rankings with U.S. News and World Report. In fact, U.S. News ranks Wesley #41-#53 in best regional colleges in the North and #30 in top performers on social mobility.

#21 – University of Memphis

Online Master’s in Sport Commerce

Memphis, Tennessee

Website

University of Memphis - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
University of Memphis – a top-ranked school for online graduate sports administration programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,746

Offered through the Kemmons Wilson School of Hospitality and Resort Management, the University of Memphis’ master’s in sports administration online focuses on sport commerce, approved by the Sport Management and National Association for Sport and Physical Education. Students learn the skills essential in the functions of production, promotion, and consumption of sport in a competitive global environment with advanced technology. Students can transfer up to 15 of the 33 credits to shorten the time to complete the program. The program can be completed entirely online or in a blended format. The University of Memphis is ranked #258 nationally according to U.S. News and World Report.

#20 – Belhaven University

Online Master of Sports Administration

Jackson, Mississippi

Website

Belhaven University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Online sports administration programs – Available at Belhaven University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,620

Belhaven University offers an affordable online master’s in sports administration degree designed to prepare students for leadership roles within sport organizations (both private and public sectors). Successful graduates of the program have secured positions as athletic directors, media relations directors, and sports writers. All classes are delivered online and taught by Belhaven’s experienced faculty. Classes cover topics like advanced organizational leadership, current issues in human resources, leading high performance teams, sports finance and budgeting, and strategic leadership. Admission to the program requires a regionally accredited bachelor’s degree with an undergraduate GPA of at least 2.50. Belhaven ranks with all major publications. In fact, recent rankings from U.S. News and World Report include #53 in best regional universities in the South and #23 in best value schools.

#19 – Jacksonville State University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Jacksonville, Alabama

Website

Jacksonville State University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Ideal for working students – Jacksonville State University’s online sports administration degree.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,600

Jacksonville State University’s online sports administration programs include the master’s in sport management. A fully online program designed for working students, the master’s in sport management program is ideal for busy students balancing life obligations. Job placement for recent graduates has included partnerships with the Houston Texans, Los Angeles Chargers, and the Talladega Superspeedway. Jacksonville’s extensive network of alumni provides access to unique internships and opportunities. Courses are delivered online and cover topics like current issues and trends in athletics, law and ethics in wellness and sport studies, and public and media relations in sport. In addition to being fully accredited, Jacksonville State ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 62nd best regional university in the South.

#18 – Missouri Baptist University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Saint Louis, Missouri

Website

Missouri Baptist University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Affordable online master’s in sport management – Missouri Baptist University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,197

Missouri Baptist University offers an affordable online graduate sports administration program in sport management. The fully online degree consists of 31 credits and takes 12-24 months to complete, depending on pace and enrollment status. Full-time and part-time options are available. Classes are delivered online and taught by Missouri Baptist faculty. Courses cover topics relevant to working in the sport industry. These courses include advanced sport marketing, sport finance, and sport psychology. In addition to being fully accredited, Missouri Baptist ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 119th-156th best regional universities in the Midwest and the 141st top performer on social mobility.

#17 – Texas A & M University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

College Station, Texas

Website

Texas A & M University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Texas A&M – a top choice for online sports administration programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,173

Texas A&M University offers one of the most affordable online graduate sports administration degree programs on our list. The program consists of 36 credits and a thesis or non-thesis pathway. Classes include a research core, sport management core, electives, and field experience opportunities. Also, depending on the student’s life obligations and schedule, part-time or full-time enrollment options are available. Admission is competitive. Applicants with an earned bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution and minimum 3.0 GPA make strong candidates. In addition to being fully accredited, Texas A&M ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 66th best national university in the country.

#16 – West Virginia University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Morgantown, West Virginia

Website

West Virginia University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
WVU ranks with U.S News and World Report for top online graduate sports administration programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,134

The West Virginia University online sports administration program offers in-state tuition for all online students. This unique incentive makes the master’s in sport management online program one of the most affordable programs on our list. Enrolled students complete a total of 30 credit hours in order to satisfy degree requirements. Two areas of emphasis add to the uniqueness of the program, allowing students to tailor their degree toward areas of interest. Emphasis areas include comprehensive sport industry management and interscholastic athletic administration. WVU ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. In fact, rankings include #241 in best national universities and #117 in top public schools.

#15 – University of Southern Indiana

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Evansville, Indiana

Website

University of Southern Indiana - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Highly affordable! University of Southern Indiana’s online graduate sports administration degree programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $10,046

Offered by the Southern Indiana Pott College of Science, Engineering, and Education, this 33-credit 100% online master’s in sports administration prepares students for leadership roles in the sport and recreation industries. Admission requirements include a bachelor’s degree with a 2.5 minimum GPA. The program welcomes any applicant to apply with these credentials and prefers those with bachelor’s degrees in fields such as business administration, communications, sport management, and related fields. The GRE or GMAT is not required to apply. Featured courses include contemporary issues in sport or exercise, dimensions of diversity and society in sport organizations, leadership skills and innovation, and research methods and statistics in sport management. Southern Indiana ranks #98 in Midwestern universities according to U.S. News and World Report.

#14 – Ohio University

Online Master of Athletic Administration

Athens, Ohio

Website

Ohio University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
An online degree in athletic administration! Ohio University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $9,720

Ohio University offers one of the few athletic administration master’s degrees online with unique specialization options. Enrolled students may select an area of specialization that complements their career interests and goals. For example, the interscholastic athletic director specialization is designed to prepare students for careers as athletic directors. The program is fully accredited and operates in the tradition of fifty years of world-leading sports business education. One unique aspect of the program is the preparation students receive for National Interscholastic Athletic Administration Association (NIAAA) certification. In addition to the program’s long-lasting reputation, the school ranks with U.S. News and World Report. Recent rankings include #176 in best national universities.

#13 – Colorado Mesa University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Grand Junction, Colorado

Website

Colorado Mesa University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
100% online graduate sports administration degree! Colorado Mesa University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $9,578

Colorado Mesa University’s online graduate sports administration degree is designed for current or aspiring professionals working in sport, recreation, or fitness. The 100% online delivery offers flexibility for those balancing outside obligations, such as work and family. Admission requirements include a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution, 3.0 GPA, statement of goals, resume, recommendations, and satisfactory test scores (GRE/GMAT/MAT). Students who do not meet the above standards may be offered conditional admission pending satisfactory completion of 12 credits within the program. According to U.S. News and World Report, Colorado Mesa University ranks #95 in regional universities West.

#12 – University of Southern Mississippi

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Hattiesburg, Mississippi

Website

University of Southern Mississippi - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Southern Mississippi offers a ranked and affordable online master’s in sport management.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $8,896

University of Southern Mississippi’s online master’s in sport management is designed to provide students with the knowledge needed to be successful working as administrators and managers in the sport industry. Curriculum offers an emphasis in sport event security management, which is the first of its kind available online. The emphasis was created to prepare students as special events managers and sport security administration. All courses are delivered online and cover relevant topics like applied research methods and statistics in sport, financial management in sport, policy and governance in sport, and socio-ethical issues in sport. The program is SACSCOC-accredited and the university ranks with U.S. News and World Report. In fact, the school ranks #298-#389 in best national universities.

#11 – Troy University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Troy, Alabama

Website

Troy University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
COSMA accredited and highly affordable! Troy University’s online graduate sports administration programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $8,506

Troy University’s master’s in sports administration online is designed for busy individuals seeking a graduate degree that provides flexible scheduling and challenging content that prepares the graduate for a leadership position in the sport industry. The program is accredited by the Commission on Sport Management Accreditation (COSMA) with coursework that takes an applied approach to learning so graduates are prepared for any number of jobs in professional, collegiate, high school, or recreational sport. The program is 100% online and requires no testing for admission. Troy University is ranked #51 in regional universities South according to U.S. News and World Report.

#10 – Liberty University

Online Master’s in Sports Management

Lynchburg, Virginia

Website

Liberty University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Liberty’s accredited online sports management program costs less than $8,500 per year.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $8,400

Liberty University’s online master’s in sports administration degree options include the 36-credit, non-thesis master’s in sports management that can be completed in just 1.5 years. Courses run eight weeks in length and are delivered entirely online. Required courses cover topics like economics and financial management of sport, ethics in sport, social issues in sport management, sport marketing and public relations. Admission to the program requires a regionally or nationally accredited bachelor’s degree with a 3.0 GPA. In addition to being fully accredited, Liberty ranks with U.S. News and World Report as the 298th-389th best national university and 340th top performer on social mobility.

#9 – Indiana State University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Terre Haute, Indiana

Website

Indiana State University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Highly affordable! Indiana State University’s online master’s in sport management.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $7,742

Indiana State University offers an affordable online master’s in sports administration program that emphasizes sport management. Students work at their own pace and have up to seven years to complete degree requirements. Core curriculum emphasizes the eight areas of competency established by the North American Society for Sport Management (NASSM). Areas include ethics, leadership, and research. Online courses focus on topics like financial management of sport program, legal aspects of and risk management in sport, and marketing of sport programs and facilities. In addition to being accredited, ISU ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report. Rankings include #298-#389 in best national universities and #154-#209 in top public schools.

#8 – Western Carolina University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Cullowhee, North Carolina

Website

Western Carolina University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
A degree in sport management online and at an affordable price! Western Carolina University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $7,414

Western Carolina University’s master’s in sports administration online ranks as one of our top programs due to its quality coursework and affordable tuition. The program welcomes people from all academic backgrounds who possess an accredited bachelor’s degree. All coursework is 100% online and there are no program course prerequisites. Students who are accepted may attend full- or part-time. Admission requirements include a recommended 3.0 GPA, 500-word essay, and two letters of recommendation. Testing is not required for admission but applicants may send in their GMAT or GRE scores as part of their application. Western Carolina ranks #25 in regional universities South by U.S. News and World Report.

#7 – Saint Leo University

Online Master’s in Sport Business

Saint Leo, Florida

Website

Saint Leo University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Ranked and accredited! Saint Leo’s online master’s in sport business.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $7,296

Similar to an online graduate sports administration degree, Saint Leo University offers a master’s in business administration with a major in sport business. In short, the degree is an MBA focusing on the business and leadership aspects of the sport and recreation industries. In addition to sport management classes, students also receive broad business training at the MBA level that includes core business management functions, effective project management, analytical decision-making, and more. Students can graduate from the 36-credit program in just one year. In addition to federal and state financial aid, Saint Leo offers scholarship opportunities to well qualified applicants. Saint Leo ranks #26 in regional universities South by U.S. News and World Report.

#6 – Georgia Southern University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Statesboro, Georgia

Website

Georgia Southern University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Affordability! Georgia Southern’s online sports management degree.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $7,069

Georgia Southern University’s online master’s in sports administration is a 36-credit program that can be completed in just 24 months. Graduates from the program have gone on to work in collegiate athletic departments, professional sports franchises, and more. Application requirements include a personal statement, transcripts, 2.5 minimum GPA, resume, and a 1-2 minute YouTube video on how the degree will impact their career. Courses in year-one may include current trends in sport administration, financial and strategic management in sport, and sport facility and event management. Georgia Southern University ranks #298 in national universities according to U.S. News and World Report.

#5 – Eastern New Mexico University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Portales, New Mexico

Website

Eastern New Mexico University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Eastern New Mexico University’s 100% online sport management program is highly affordable.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $7,044

Eastern New Mexico University offers a master’s in sports administration online that ranks as one of our top programs due to its quality content and affordable tuition. The program is 100% online and specializes in helping working professionals achieve their goal of a graduate degree from a respected institution. Interested applicants should submit transcripts and a letter of intent along with their transcripts. A 3.0 GPA is recommended for full admission. Those with a lower GPA may be accepted on a provisional basis. Featured courses include ethics in sport, management and leadership in sport, and sport law and risk management. ENMU is ranked #95 in regional universities West by U.S. News and World Report.

#4 – University of Central Arkansas

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Conway, Arkansas

Website

University of Central Arkansas - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
University of Central Arkansas – a top choice for sport management online programs.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $6,539

The Central Arkansas online graduate sports administration degree is designed for those currently working in the sport industry with a desire to earn a graduate level credential with the hopes of upward career mobility into management positions. Individuals with a bachelor’s degree in business, kinesiology, marketing, psychology, or a related discipline are preferred. Candidates with degrees in other fields will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Applicants must also have a 2.8 cumulative GPA or a 3.0 GPA within their last 60 credits. No test scores are required to apply. The University of Central Arkansas ranks #298 in national universities by U.S. News and World Report.

#3 – Arkansas State University

Online Master’s in Sport Administration

Jonesboro, Arkansas

Website

Arkansas State University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
Arkansas State’s COSMA-accredited online graduate sports administration degree is for working and busy students alike.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $6,422

Arkansas State University ranks #3 for most affordable online graduate sports administration degree programs. The online master’s in sports administration at Arkansas State offers an accredited degree that is designed for working professionals. The program consists of 36 credit hours and takes just 12 months to complete. Accredited by the Commission on Sport Management Accreditation (COSMA), the program offers rigorous courses taught by the same university professors who instruct on campus. Recent program graduates have acquired leadership roles in collegiate athletic departments, health and fitness clubs, professional sport organizations, and stadiums and arenas. In addition to being fully accredited, Arkansas State ranks with major publications like U.S. News and World Report as a top national university and public school.

#2 – Missouri State University

Online Master’s in Sport Management

Springfield, Missouri

Website

Missouri State University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
One of the most affordable online graduate sports administration degree programs on our list! Missouri State University!

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $6,250

Missouri State University’s master’s in sports administration online prepares its graduates for leadership positions in all areas of sport including professional, collegiate, international, and secondary environments where an in-depth understanding of the unique challenges and opportunities of the industry are needed to run a successful organization. Students learn key leadership functions within the context of the job by taking courses that cover concepts such as budgeting and accounting, ethics and regulatory issues, and leadership and project management. Specialty tracks are available in 12 fields. Missouri State ranks in five U.S. News and World Report categories including #298 in national universities and #90 in social mobility.

#1 – Southeastern Oklahoma State University

Online Master’s in Sports Administration

Durant, Oklahoma

Website

Southeastern Oklahoma State University - Top 50 Affordable Online Graduate Sports Administration Degree Programs 2021
#1 most affordable online graduate sports administration program – Southeastern Oklahoma State University.

Graduate Tuition/Fees: $5,022

Coming in at number one on our list of top 50 affordable online master’s in sports administration programs is the online master’s in sports administration from Southeastern Oklahoma State University. The 30-credit program is entirely online and can be completed in just 12 months from the time of enrollment. The overall emphasis is to give graduates the skills to develop nutrition and strength-training programs for all levels of athletes, from amateur to professional as well as advanced coaching and leadership techniques and strategies. Professionals with a bachelor’s degree, 2.75 GPA, and two years of professional experience in the industry are encouraged to apply. Southeastern Oklahoma is ranked #95 in regional universities West by U.S. News and World Report.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What can I do with an online graduate sports administration degree?

From coaching to athletic training, scouting to administration, an online graduate sports administration degree will open doors to a wide number of career possibilities. Earning a master’s in sport administration will equip you with an in-depth look at the sports industry, which is recognized as one of the largest industries nationally and globally.

Various jobs exist for graduates of sports administration programs. Choosing which pathway to take usually occurs while you are still in school. In fact, many online sports administration programs offer specializations or emphases that allow students to tailor their degree to meet career goals. These specializations might include athletic training, coaching, or interscholastic sport administration.

College athletic departments vary in size. Large programs often have hundreds of people working for them, while smaller programs at smaller schools have an athletic director, assistants, and coaches. The NCAA routinely posts jobs for individuals with sports administration degrees.

Other opportunities for careers in sports administration exist through large organizations like the North American Society for Sport Management and the National Association of College Directors of Athletics. These organizations often have affiliations with colleges and universities and offer networking opportunities.

While various jobs in sports administration exist, leadership roles often call for advanced degrees. To remain competitive in this growing industry, an online graduate degree in sports administration may be required.

What is the job outlook for individuals with online graduate sports administration degrees?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Occupational Outlook Handbook, the employment of coaches and scouts is projected to grow 13 percent through 2026, about twice as fast as all other occupations. At the high school and collegiate level, rising participation and increased enrollment should create a demand for coaching and athletic director positions.

For higher-paying jobs in sports administration, especially at the collegiate level, applicants will face competition. Candidates with an advanced degree, such as online graduate sports administration degrees, or individuals who have acquired certification in specialized sports disciplines, should have the best job prospects. Also, as the need to replace the high number of school coaches and athletic directors grows, institutions will seek highly qualified individuals with ample education.

Fierce competition for scout jobs, especially for professional teams and popular collegiate programs, is expected. To help set yourself apart from your competitors, consider earning an advanced degree in sports administration.

While the demand for sport industry jobs is expected to increase, funding for smaller athletic programs at secondary schools, as well as smaller colleges and universities, will be cut when budgets become tight. Budget cuts can impact hiring new coaches. However, in an effort to avoid budget cuts, booster clubs and parental fundraisers help keep programs alive.

How much will I earn with an online graduate sports administration degree?

The money you make with an online graduate sports administration degree depends on the career pathway you take. While the degree qualifies you for a number of positions in the sport industry, not all jobs offer high-paying salaries.

BLS reports the median annual wage for coaches and athletic scouts is $33,780. The lowest ten percent earned less than $18,970, while the highest ten percent of earners in these positions made more than $77,880. Colleges and universities, both state and private, paid more than elementary and secondary school coaches.

Athletic directors, according to PayScale–a global research compensation organization–earned $60,137 yearly salary, though this number varies by experience and location. According to PayScale, an entry-level athletic director with less than one year experience earns an average compensation of $49,811. Late career athletic directors with more than twenty years of experience earn $79,239.

The highest paid sports administration jobs are sports agents. Most agents have law degrees or other specialized business education, though some have earned sports management or sports administration degrees. According to USA Today’s Sports annual survey, agents pull in between $16,000 and $4 million annually. This is quite a range and depends on many variables, such as location, experience, and industry.

What are the admission requirements for online graduate sports administration degree programs?

Admission requirements vary by programs and schools for online graduate sports administration degrees. There are several factors that influence admission requirements. In fact, institutional rankings, delivery method (online or in-person), and the type of degree impact requirements. Overall, we found common admission requirements for the affordable online graduate sports administration degree programs.

The top-ranked institutions on our list ask for satisfactory GRE or GMAT scores. In some cases, graduate test scores may be waived when the applicant showcases a stellar undergraduate performance. In fact, there are many programs on our list that waive the GRE for applicants with undergraduate GPAs of 3.0 or better. Mid- and low-tier programs generally do not require the GRE or GMAT.

The majority of schools on our list ask for an earned bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university prior to admission. While the degree does not have to be in sports administration, some programs ask for a related discipline.

Other admission requirements may include letters of recommendation from individuals who can attest to academic performance, work experience in a related field, official transcripts from all schools attended, and a statement of purpose or goals. Admission requirements vary, so it is important to review program criteria prior to sitting down and completing the online application.

How long does it take to earn an online graduate sports administration degree?

The time it takes to earn an online graduate sports administration degree varies by program. However, the average length of time to complete a master’s degree is two years. Depending on enrollment status, the online programs listed above may take less than two years. On average, the online graduate sports administration degree takes 1.5 years to complete.

There are several factors that impact completion time. First, part-time or full-time enrollment can shorten or lengthen the time it takes to earn an online degree. Part-time programs offer more flexibility than full-time programs. However, part-time enrollment means you will typically take one class each term. If you want to complete your degree at a quicker rate, full-time enrollment offers a compressed timeline.

While time to completion varies among programs, one should expect to earn a master’s in sports administration in one to two years. As mentioned above, full-time programs take less time but require students to move at a rigorous pace. If you plan to work full-time, carrying a full-time course load may not fit your schedule. However, part-time programs allow you to work at your own pace and fulfill course requirements at a slower and steadier rate. Understanding enrollment expectations before applying to programs helps alleviate scheduling problems down the road.

BCO Staff
January 2021

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This concludes our list of the top 50 most affordable online graduate sports administration degree programs for 2021.