Bryce Carpenter is a 22-year-old CEO and certified NBPA agent for Proactive Sports Agency. He graduated from Southeastern Louisiana University where he received a Bachelor’s in Sports Management and is currently pursuing his Juris Doctor at the Thurgood Marshall School of Law. Carpenter has assembled a team of professionals including an attorney and marketing coordinator that will help his clients achieve their dreams on and off the court. Check out our interview with the youngest NBPA-certified agent below.
SAB: What steps did you take to become NBPA certified?
BC: The NBPA requires an undergraduate college degree. One who doesn’t have an undergraduate college degree can show sufficient and relevant negotiating experience in place of the degree requirement. Any legal violations or professional discipline, especially involving dishonesty or fraud are evaluated in the background check done that can result in denial of your application. A fee accompanies the application and is paid yearly by the agent to the union. The union holds yearly seminars in which they discuss economic developments, changes in the CBA, salary and contract information, drug and steroid policies, financial planning and other relevant topics. The NBPA requires attendance at the yearly seminar every year for the first three years as a certified agent. After acceptance of the application, a multiple-choice exam is taken that totals 50 questions. To pass, you cannot miss more than 8 questions. The materials someone would need to use to study for the exam are the collective bargaining agreement and the agent regulations issued by the NBPA.
SAB: Tell us about your industry experience prior to Proactive.
BC: Before Proactive Sports Agency, I was the marketing coordinator for an NFL agency called Agility Sports. I worked directly with the lead agent and CEO, Joseph Clayborne. My tasks included researching comparable player statistics, advanced analytics, and market assessments for client contract negotiations. I also coordinated the summer youth football camps for the clients and obtained marketing/endorsement deals for the clientele.
SAB: How do you differentiate yourself from industry veterans?
BC: I think that because I am 22, I have something to prove. I have to find innovative ways to ensure that I develop trust between the player, their family and myself because of it. Socially, I believe I have more in common with the athlete which allows them to understand that I’m genuinely invested from more than just a business sense. We are growing and developing together and our lives have molded us in similar ways. When I recruit I have been very selective with who I recruit, which most agents don’t do. However, the players and their family members notice that I am more invested in them because my focus isn’t on a big group of guys. I also believe that because of all these things combined with my knowledge and passion for the game, I will stand out. Last, my brand on social media will differentiate me from industry veterans, because my brand will help the player’s I sign. My tweet announcing my sports agency was seen over 2.5 million times. Everyone is now paying attention to see who I sign and if I even will sign anyone at all. When I sign my draft class, I’ll not only be one of the youngest agents but the youngest agent with a player on an active roster. The media marketing behind that is going to be huge not only for my brand but for the players’ brand as well. 22 is the age of most seniors in college but I am a certified agent and about to graduate with a law degree. My passion, qualifications, and work ethic are second to none and I think it shows.
SAB: Do you have any plans to become FIBA-certified to recruit international players?
BC: I am currently in the process of getting FIBA-certified to represent an international player in the 2021 draft. As a certified NBPA agent, FIBA gives an exemption from having to take their test so the process is quite easy. Currently, I am focused on this upcoming draft and the player I will sign.
SAB: What is the pre-draft process like for the NBA Draft?
BC: The NBA pre-draft process for Proactive Sports Agency clients will begin on April 2nd and end June 24th. Our clients have the option to train at IMG Academy in Florida or Impact Basketball in Las Vegas. During that time, players are on a strict schedule. During each day, our players will go through position-specific training, physical conditioning, movement training, practice interviews, recovery therapy, etc. Throughout their time training, players will have to attend NBA team workouts and the combine as well.
SAB: As one of the youngest NBPA-certified agents, what advice do have for aspiring sports industry professionals, who likely aren’t much younger than you?
BC: Set your goals and go after them. I knew from a very young age I wanted to be an agent, so I made it happen. I set a plan at a very young age and followed it. I truly believe that writing down your goals will help you to see your progress as you try and complete each one. I used to reach out to agents when I was in high school and no one ever replied with advice. Now that I’m in the position to help others, I would say reach out to me with any direct questions you have. I would hate that I never could get a reply, so I want to make sure people interested in sports have that direct access to me.
SAB: Where can our viewers follow your professional journey?
BC: My Instagram and Twitter accounts are the same: @BryceTheAgent. Website: ProactiveSportsAgency.com. Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions about the business. I’d love to answer any questions or give advice for those interested in becoming a sports agent.