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Why I Decided To Enter The World Of Athlete Representation

Sometimes I am asked the question, “Why did you decide to enter the world of athlete representation?”  It is a loaded question that is extremely difficult to answer.

Up until high school, the plan was to become a doctor.  You know that put a smile on my Jewish mother’s face.  When I realized that I could not bare even looking at blood, I started to think about new lines of work.  From the day I was born, my father pushed sports on me.  I loved watching athletes perform, but enjoyed being a part of the action even more.  I picked up a tennis racket at the age of 3 and a baseball bat at the age of 4.  So with Sports Doctor out of the question, how else could I incorporate my passion for sports in my professional life?

Leading up to my freshman year of high school, I had heard many great things about High School Debate, and more specifically, my high school’s (Nova High) debate team.  Never one to back down from arguing my view and stubborn to the nth degree, debate seemed like it would be a good fit.  I ended up specializing in Student Congress, where I was responsible for crafting Bills and Resolutions, and arguing the Affirmative or Negative stance on a provided docket of legislation at various national tournaments.  By senior year, I was Captain of the Student Congress section of our debate team, which was known for having the strongest Student Congress competitors in the United States.  I was reading Supreme Court cases in high school and citing precedents practically every weekend.  When I applied to various universities, the plan was to Major in Political Science and then go to law school, with the goal of entering the world of politics.

I chose the University of Florida as my college destination.  Upon stepping foot on campus, I was ignorant as to how politics in the real world actually operate.  I still believed that those with the brains and those with the drive were the people who were awarded positions.  Boy was I wrong about that.  The University of Florida opened up my eyes to how politics really works.  After being denied positions that I was certainly qualified for, mostly due to the fact that I joined one of the newer, less politically powerful fraternities on campus (we are now amongst the strongest – and it is nice to know that I had a part in that), my desire for politics started to diminish.  At the University of Florida there is an honor society called Florida Blue Key.  It is a very selective group of the most involved and powerful people on campus.  I knew I wanted to be a part of it.  And I was told many times by very powerful people that I would never get in and one former President of the organization told me that he would make sure that I wouldn’t be invited.  So much for that, as I am now a member, but that is another story.

So after I realized that I wanted something other than a political future, but still very interested in going to law school and always passionate about sports, I decided to give the whole sports agency business a try.  Again, I had no idea what I was getting myself into.  I figured that the qualified applicants get invited to participate in internships and that the business operates on merit as a whole.  I quickly found out that was not the case.  Luckily, I had a connection to the President of a major agency.  My girlfriend (at the time) was roommates with the niece of this President.  The company had less than 10 summer internships available, and over 800 applicants.  Only 1 person would be interning in the particular area that I wanted – Client Services.  The company does a lot of work outside of athlete representation, which is where the other interns worked.  My connection allowed me to skip the in-person interview and do a phone interview instead.  And I failed.  I did my research on the company, but living in Florida my entire life and being used to the way Floridians communicate with each other, I came off as not having enough of the “southern hospitality” this company was looking for.  But I got a 2nd chance in another phone interview, and I knocked it out of the park.  I interned with the company over that Summer between my sophomore and junior year of college.  That’s when I decided that I wanted to be in this industry.  The internship confirmed it and made me believe that I had the skills to separate myself from the competition and do great work for my future clients.

By Darren Heitner

Darren Heitner created Sports Agent Blog as a New Year's Resolution on December 31, 2005. Originally titled, "I Want To Be A Sports Agent," the website was founded with the intention of causing Heitner to learn more about the profession that he wanted to join, meet reputable individuals in the space and force himself to stay on top of the latest news and trends.

Heitner now runs Heitner Legal, P.L.L.C., which is a law firm with many practice areas, including sports law and contract law. Heitner has represented numerous athletes and sports agents as legal counsel. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at Indiana University Bloomington from 2011-2014, where he created and taught a course titled, Sport Agency Management, which included subjects ranging from NCAA regulations to athlete agent certification and the rules governing the profession. Heitner serves as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law, where he teaches a Sports Law class that includes case law surrounding athlete agents and the NCAA rules.

10 replies on “Why I Decided To Enter The World Of Athlete Representation”

Interesting, UF is where I plan on going to law school after I finish my undergrad in Business at UCF.
Question: When did you starting studying for your LSAT? With whom did you study with (kaplan, ect…) Any do or don’ts you could recommend?

I stumbled across your “blog” 4 days ago and must say I have been hooked.
Keep up the good work!
Jon G

Hey Jon. Glad you are enjoying the blog.

I started studying for the LSAT roughly 2 months before the test – whenever my LSAT class began, and no earlier. I used TestMasters, which I can easily recommend, as it definitely helped me raise my score.


I have become “hooked” on your blog as well. I am looking to venture into the sports agent world too. Currently I am a Company Commander in the U.S. Army (in Iraq). I will be applying to Law School in about 2 years. Early next year I plan on taking the LSAT (through TestMasters of course) and I would like to know if the LSAT loses its validity or becomes outdated with time. Seeing as how I won’t actually be applying to Law school for at least another year after I take the test. Thank you for your wisdom and sharing your experiences with us would be sports agents.


My plan will work then. Thank you for your praise and I look forward to picking your brain some more in the future =)


great article and great blog. i’m a rising sophomore at rutgers right now and I’m looking to intern at some sports agencies specializing in basketball soon. any tips? thanks a lot.

As I mentioned in my post – I had an internship between my soph/junior years. Most agencies want you to do your internship a year or 2 later. Start looking around.

I can’t pick one over the other. A lot depends on who your teacher is, and that varies by location. I used TestMasters for the LSAT and I was happy. I am using Kaplan for the Bar Exam, and thus far I am happy (although it is so painful).

I am a sports medicine doctor and orthopedic surgeon. I am considering a new way to utilize my knowledge and experience as an in-house expert for a sports agency. I would no longer be the treating physician but I feel I could be an advocate for the athlete clients in their dealings with the treating physicians. I can alo be a medical resource for the agents as it concerns injuries and their implications. Your thoughts as to the viability of this avenue?

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